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Review Group Punisher #11

guitarsmashley had the pick for new comics shipping November 18th and he selected Punisher #11 by Rick Remender and Tony Moore.

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The Review Group is a collection of posters who get together and review a new comic each week that we each take turns selecting. Our threads can be found in The Outhouse’s News Stand forum and is open for anyone and everyone to participate in.

Frankencastle. 'Nuff said.
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Review by 48THRiLLS

I don't like The Punisher. I did like this but it was not the issue itself that made me want to get the next issue, it was the last page... the next issue cover preview. Seeing Frank with all the monsters behind him is pure genius and so full of win how could I not want to read that. This issue was mostly set-up and pretty ridiculous but fun as hell. My only problem is that I am not sure who some of the monsters were, it felt like I should have known who they are but I don't... it didn't ruin the story for me but I kept thinking to myself 'should I know who this is?' The art is fantastic, Tony Moore is awesome. Between the outrageous story concept and Tony Moore's pencils I am pretty sure I will grab the next issue. I was not too stoked to review another Punisher book especially one written by the same guy who wrote the last one we reviewed but I did like this one much more than the last... good pick.

STORY - 8
ART - 10
OVERALL - 8.9
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Review by guitarsmashley

I just finished this, my god what a horribly amazing comic it is. I mean you have perhaps one of the worst ideas ever for Marvel to attempt to dig itself out of, unless they just let Punisher not be a part of the Marvel universe, if that is the idea here then great but otherwise, the only way to come back from this story is a one word answer, Magic. As awful as the idea is the issue itself is pretty good and filled with enough cool moments or little jabs to make it enjoyable. Where the issue really shines is the art. Tony Moore is one of my favorite artists out there and anything he draws is instantly at least a 7. If it weren't for Tony this story wouldn't hold water and I don't even think he's drawing the entire arc since the issue just solicited didn't have his name on it. Ultimately I think it's Moore that carries this title and makes the issues even stomachable since he's well...incredible. My only complaint on Moore is Morbius. He looks like an old Jewish doctor unsure of what he's doing but beyond that he's perfect. So now the score, like I said, based on art alone the issue would get at least a 7. So its final score is an 8.

And just to fuck with Punchy, Best line; Your dog's been eatin' crap. Stinks.
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Review by starlord

Well, the world is going to end. Why? Because I finally read a Punisher issue that I actually enjoyed, and all a writer had to do was kill him and turn him into a bigger joke than he already was! It's excellent! In fact, I'm very tempted to pick up the next issue just to see where this story leads FrankenCastle.

The dialogue was great. Funny. Now what I didn't care for (surprisingly so) was the art. It just wasn't up to the usual standards that I expect from Moore. In fact if Punchy doesn't mind, I'm actually going to say that I have a favorite line:

"Your dog's been eatin' crap. Stinks." Excellent.

Story: 8
Art: 5
My Score: 7
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Review by amlah6

This was stupidity on a level that hasn't been seen in a Punisher comic since Golden and Sniegoski turned Frank into an angel. The crazy thing about it though, it was pretty damn fun. Of course the fact that it's happening in a Punisher comic is completely arbitrary, but if that's what it takes to get Tony Moore to draw Man-Thing it's worth it. It's not like this will have a long term effect on the character, be it magic or a dream 616 Punisher will be back in his shiny white boots sooner than later.

Tony Moore is better than just about anyone when it comes to drawing crazy shit and this had crazy shit in abundance and I loved every page of it.

Story: 2
Art: 10
Overall: 6
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Review by doombug

Rick Remender has a very huge brass set on him. Reading that comic was like watching Army of Darkness. A b movie that while corny has great one liners, awesome moments and you can't help but to love it. Remender takes a ridiculously insane idea, throws everything at the fan and bribes Tony Moore into drawing the chaos that ensues.

Can I tell you how beautiful this comic is? Well it's very beautiful. My only complaint is that Morbius is looking like Jeff Goldblum out of the fly. Honestly this was some of the most fun I had reading a comic this week. (Other then Merc with a Mouth #5 where Deadpool blows an A.I.M. agent’s head off for professing their love for the prequels).

Seriously I can't get over how awesome that was. It's interesting to see a certain supporting character still in the book as well and I hope he convinces Frank to let him back into his life. Though obviously Frank is never going to be the same. I'm amused at the fact that Castle was very much like Frankenstein’s monster when first woken up. Not to mention the last page where Frank thinks he's going to be okay going into public looking like that?

I also really dug the use of some of Marvel's pantheon of monsters. From Man-Thing to I swear I saw Fin Fang Foom.

Story: 9
Art: 10

Overall score: 9.5
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Review by Punchy

Story - Ever since Garth Ennis revitalized and reinvented The Punisher as an adults-only crime comic, it's been a challenge for other writers to make the character fit into the Marvel Universe, he just seems too serious, too deadly to go up against guys in Spandex. Rick Remender has made a game go at putting Frank in situations that Ennis would never do, taking on Norman Osborn, fighting The Sentry, The Hood, having his family resurrected and then Frank kill them, and then finally, having Daken decapitate him.

Yeah, that's right, decapitate, Frank Castle is now dead, he's joined the choir invisible, he has ceased to be, he is an ex-Punisher. But of course, it's not the end. We pick up almost immediately after The List special, as HAMMER agents hunt down his dismembered body bits, but then... Man-Thing shows up. And it just gets crazier from there. Frank is taken by Man-Thing to the Legion Of Monsters, including such Marvel mainstays as Morbius The Living Vampire, Werewolf-By-Night, Moleman's Moloids and the Living Mummy. Seeing these characters in Punisher... it's not something you'd expect. And then seeing Frank patched together as a Frankenstein is even weirder. I think you can safely say this isn't re-treading an old story, Remender is truly breaking new ground now.

But this isn't just for laughs, the Legion Of Monsters have a reason for getting Frank back, they are being hunted by a group of gloriously over the top Japanese Monster-Hunters who spout glorious non-sequiturs about killing all monsters. They have been hunted down, and they need a military strategist like Frank to lead them and help them. It's an interesting new villain for Frank to face, and it's actually a pretty solid explanation for why all this madness is happening. I do worry a bit that Remender has dropped all of his continuing subplots such as The Hood's machinations or Frank's new 'Microchip' Henry, for this new direction, but Henry does make an appearance here, and I hope Remender manages weave the new world of Frank with the old one.

So Punisher purists may balk at such a different type of story, it's reminiscent of the Angel Punisher or other such bollocks, but I say that this is different, and it's being done with its tongue firmly in cheek. I would say that as long as there is a quality MAX book like Jason Aaron's which launched last week, the 616 Punisher should be allowed to go as crazy as it likes, otherwise what we'd get is sub-MAX stories without any of the violence or language, PG-13 Punisher has to go for broke, and this is it, it's a great ride, and for once, the Punisher in the Marvel Universe is totally unpredictable. All it took was his death to make things interesting.

Art - I think Tony Moore is part of what makes this concept work, his art really pops here, and it sells the madness and insanity, as well as the personal moments. Seeing an artist like Moore draw the Man-Thing is awe-inspiring, as is seeing his take on the various Kirby Monsters that are dotted around. Moore knows horror comics, as we've seen on the first arc of Walking Dead or his recent 3-issues of Ghost Rider, and there are some scenes here, such as when a HAMMER agent knows fear and burns at the touch of the Man-Thing. Moore even manages to make Frankencastle look not totally ridiculous. This book is a lot of fun, but it wouldn't be half as much fun without Tony Moore.

Best Line - 'Slay all Monsters. Make the Earth clean. Complete our reputations' I love Engrish.

8/10
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Review by Jubilee

I'm not a hardcore Punisher fan, but I just can't read this book, it's over the top silliness taking an interesting concept like the Punisher and turning it into something which goes against everything the character has been through before, the art was nice, but didn't make up for the story. Whilst some people love the over the top craziness, this definitely isn't for me.

3 out of 10
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Review by Old Man

Wowsers, did that suck.

Frankencastle sucks.

The writing sucks.

The art sucks.

For publishing this, Marvel sucks.

This review sucks.

5-

That grade is a 5 minus, not a negative 5. It is so damn close to being a 4, meaning that it is below professional level. As much as I wanted to, I just couldn't put it that low.

I've never been a fan of the Punisher. He is not a hero. He is not even an anti-hero. He is a murderer. As a pulp character, he would have worked. As a non-hero is a series of 80 or so nondescript, cheaply made, quickly written, dull and boring novels, he would have worked (to the extent that those kinds of books actually work).

I've heard that Remender is a good writer. It doesn't show here. The first 3 pages are set on Monster Island, but appear to have nothing to do with the rest of the story. That Frank Castle has been turned from a human being into a Frankenstein's Monster is something that can't be undone. The character is forever changed. Marvel has lost the character that so many have cared for in the past.

I've seen Moore's art before, and it was better than this. There is no depth to the work. I would guess that this was done on a computer -- the inking sure looks like it. As drawn, Man-Thing looks to be at least 20-25 feet tall. Do they actually make sewers that big? I suppose it's possible.

And I must harp on editorial a bit, because they are the ultimate hands that control the outgoing product. Whoever wrote the re-cap left out a few commas, (arguably) changed tenses for one word, and let confusing wording stand that allows a mis-reading of who the subject of the sentence is.* They may have also let one paragraph be separated into two. But looking at it, they may have done this for the sake of the readers who might enjoy this type of story -- people who get confused by too many words in one paragraph. (Hmmm, maybe I should split this paragraph.)

To sum, this is the lowest edge of mediocrity. I'm sorry I read it, and sorry that I can't get back the time spent. If all of Marvel's books were this bad, they'd soon be out of business. I suppose this book had to see print, though, as Marvel has first printing rights at the printer, so the more books they publish, the fewer that can be printed for other companies. That's one way to control the market.

* And my English is not perfect by any means. I'm not sure which is proper usage in this case, 'who' or 'whom'...mis-reading of who the subject of the sentence is...or even if that is a proper sentence construction en toto.
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Review by thefourthman

To read thefourthman's full review, go here: http://brokenfrontier.com/reviews/p/detail/punisher-11

"Well, Remender had other plans for us. Fans may be left wondering why Marvel would green light the story, but in the long run it makes sense. Jason Aaron just got done revitalizing the Ghost Rider franchise after one of the dumber storylines by making it a pulp horror book. On top of the critical and somewhat bolstered sales success of that storyline, why wouldn’t Marvel want to do more of what it was famous for in the Seventies? Especially when you are brought the idea by the creative team behind the awesome Crawlspace: XXXombies. Talk about crazy storylines - porn stars saving us from zombies has to take the cake, right? Problem was that book was an amazing spectacle of fun comics storytelling.

Here we see that magic working again. The moloids snatch away Frank’s body from Norman’s cronies. Next thing we see is Frank waking up to Morbius and Werewolf by Night talking about his usefulness. Then we see it, Frankencastle. The rest is just good comic hijinks. The Legion of Monsters are scared of some force headed their way and there is a lava priest guy preaching to the monsters. Morbius has a proposition for the newest Marvel monster, but will Castle listen or will he just smash stuff?

With all the fun of the script, Moore creates some of his most fun looking art. Man-Thing is playful. The moloids look like they have bred with the iszs and Frankencastle is just ludicrous looking. It’s all in good comics fun."

Story 8
Art 10
Overall 9

Good fucking book.
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Review by Dragavon

Well that was an interesting comic. Visually, it was good. Nice art, decent inks, good coloring. If this was judged on the basis of the efforts of Moore alone, I'd give it 8.

The writing is decent. Characters that are distinct and interesting. Decent mix of dialogue and action. If this was something other than a Punisher comic, it would definitely get a good review from me.

However, it is a Punisher comic, and therefore the plot is completely not related to Punisher except in a very tangential way. There was a rumor going around that this was a rehash of one of Remender's existing plots that was adapted to the Punisher. Unfortunately it feels very inappropriate for Frank Castle.

Art 8/10
Story 5/10
Total 6.5/10
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Review by Kerny

This shouldn't work, really it shouldn't, but it does

I liked just about everything about this, the japanese monster hunters, the Legion of monsters, and even Frankencastle himself. This won't last, and I wouldn't want it to, but we got here is just a fun little ride. Plus Fin Fang Foom in a cast, and the punisher kicking Man-Thing in the face.

The art is what will bring people to this. Tony Moore may be a genius, and he proves it here. A finely illustrated world he has depcited here with seemingly unlimited Sewer space. I liked all of his design choices, especially his giant-size Man-Thing. (obvious joke is obvious)

Story 8
Art 9
Overall 8.5
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Review by young neil

I get the negativity I really do. Everyone who loves the punisher for what he is, is probably going to hate this. But there’s Punishermax and there’s this Punisher title, I’m glad they’re doing something totally different with the two books. Punisher #11 is a great stepping on point and wow, is it one hell of a ride. The Punisher being put back together Frankenstein style by Morbius and being asked to be a soldier in a monster war, like everyone else I know this situation won’t last, but why can’t I enjoy the ride whilst it’s in progress. I just have to say Rick Remender is a brave man for doing this story as I can see the amount of back-lash he’ll most likely receive.

Rick Remender and Tony Moore, are a favourite of mine on Fear Agent. And whenever I see Tony Moore’s art I can’t help but noticing Heath Houston from Fear Agent pop up now and again. Tony Moore’s art didn’t seem up to scratch at the start of the issue, I don’t know whether it was due to the inking or the colours but it really seemed Diluted and a little messy. But as the story rushes on Moore’s art catches up and is dead-on near perfect towards the end. Tony Moore is definitely one of my favourite artists and each issue he draws, just convinces me of his greatness even more.

A Punisher book in the proper Marvel universe has always seemed a little boring to me, I mean honestly what can he really do against a proper super villain, and I guess we saw how easily he was taken out when he went up against Daken. But this out of left field idea has broken new ground and made the Punisher an interesting addition to the marvel universe. Marvel max punisher will always be choc-full of gritty real-world crime stories. Now we have FRANKEN-CASTLE, how totally different is that, sit back and enjoy the ride. I will.

Story 7.5
Art 9
Overall – 8.25 
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That gives Punisher #11 a group score of 7.30.  Between this and the Ghost Rider issue we reviewed a few months ago, it's pretty clear the Review Group loves it some Tony Moore.

For further discussion of this week's book feel free to join us in this week's thread (http://www.theouthousers.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=32451) found in the News Stand forum where you are also invited to post your own review.
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amlah6 has the pick for November 25th and he has selected Image United #1 from Image Comics.  Look for the Liefeld fueled thread after it becomes available Wednesday morning to post your own review.

Image United #1

story ROBERT KIRKMAN
art ERIK LARSEN, ROB LIEFELD, TODD McFARLANE, WHILCE PORTACIO, MARC SILVESTRI & JIM VALENTINO

THE CROSSOVER EVENT OF THE CENTURY IS HERE! The heroes of the Image Universe are united in order to fight the greatest threat the world as ever faced! You can’t miss this historic event as the original Image Founders draw all the characters they made history with. Each page is an amazing jam piece – it’s a story told in a way never before attempted in comics!


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