Punisher is hitting up L.A. in his new series by writer Nathan Edmondson and artist Mitch Gerads. The second issue will be hitting local comic shops on February 19th, and Edmondson answered a few of our questions about this character and the series.
Comic Vine: Were you ever a fan of Punisher? What do you like or dislike about the character?
Nathan Edondson: I was discussing with another reader the other day that The Punisher is perhaps the most ubiquitous comic character, world-wide. Soldiers wear him on their uniforms who haven’t read a comic in their lives; sex toys are nicknamed for him, racecars and wrestlers take on the skull or namesake, despite having little awareness of the actual comic. This is very different than say, Spider-Man, for whom you need some affinity to the character and story in one of its forms to really wear a t-shirt or get a tattoo. I have always liked The Punisher, the simplicity of the uncompromising death dealer; even his costume is simple, no-nonsense, fierce.
With our take we sought to see beneath that, to stir the depths and see what rose to the surface.
CV: What's new in Punisher's world in your new series?
NE: Frank himself isn’t changed, but we do see perhaps new sides of him. Oh, and if you haven’t heard, we’ve got a badass black-ops squad, none other than the (SPOILER AHEAD) Howlin’ Commandos. Frank’s doomed.
CV: What's something you wanted to do with Frank to make him stand out from the other series?
NE: As I mention above, we wanted to explore some new sides we haven’t seen before—we wanted to see a more human side of the killing machine. We also wanted Frank to be as much on the defensive as the offensive. Thirdly, Mitch and I decided to infuse our version of The Punisher with tactical military precision—which should come as no surprise to readers of THE ACTIVITY.
CV: How will Punisher adapt to working/living/hunting in LA?
NE: With sunglasses and shotguns.
CV: Will we be seeing any old villains from Frank's past or will this focus on new baddies?
NE: I can’t really give anything away, but while we’re exploring a whole new sets of scenarios, shall we say, some familiar faces will certainly come into focus as we move forward in the story.
CV: Was it always in the works to have ACTIVITY co-creator Mitch Gerads work with you on this book?
NE: It was something I demanded early on; but it wasn’t a tough sale to Marvel. Mitch’s skill and our chemistry working together spoke for themselves.
CV: Is there anything you can vaguely go over that you're very excited about in this series?
NE: There are big pieces at play. Lots of readers who loved the first issue remarked that it was fairly surface-level storytelling. Stay tuned—nothing could be further from the truth in this story.
Thanks a ton to Nathan Edmondson for taking the time to answer a few of our questions and make sure to check out PUNISHER #2 when it comes out on February 19th at comic shops everyone and online!