Review: The Punisher Season 1 Episode 9 “Front Toward Enemy”

Effectively balancing a solemn, grief-struck tone with explosive intensity and brutal potency, ‘The Punisher’ delivers an episode which is impactful on the surface, playing to the viewers’ emotion, but doesn’t carry the same complexity in its depths. While Lewis’ overall intentions and motivations draw upon well developed strains and issues personally, the political stance still seems generic, as the supposed Government tyranny has only been briefly showcased, and only from Frank’s perspective, not as an American problem. It may speak to an ideological perspective from Lewis, noting terrorism as not being grounded but as fanaticism, but it undermines the overall need to relate to Lewis. Furthermore, while the gun commentary gives Karen a genuine, organic role in the series, continuing to develop her advocacy for the common person, some of it feels clunky and doesn’t reflect enough within Frank’s discussions. The overall serial narrative is excellent however, and provides a brilliant forward focus for the series. Castle is superbly positioned and the writers’ continual ability to highlight the character’s ability to switch mindsets is compelling. 8.5/10


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