It’s no secret that The Punisher is incredibly violent. There’s plenty of brutality throughout the other series’ in the Defenders stable, including Daredevil — Season 2, which features the Punisher himself, Frank Castle. But The Punisher is next level. Episode after episode, scene after scene, the violence keeps coming, with some genuinely savage moments.
The Punisher star Jon Bernthal shares his two favourites of the show’s many violent scenes exclusively with FANDOM, and why he likes them so much. Showrunner Steve Lightfoot also shares his thoughts.
“I like it when it’s intimate,” says Bernthal. “So the stuff in Episode 12 with Rawlins and being face to face, I really enjoyed that, and I really enjoyed the moment when [Frank] gets back up and the fight at the end of [Episode] three. I’m talking really from experiencing it, not seeing it, but I enjoy [on-screen violence].”
Bernthal is quick to point out that the extreme violence is a necessary part of Frank Castle’s story, and therefore it’s important that we see it.
“It’s not just violence for the sake of violence, there’s something behind it. And I think for Frank there’s a bit of momentary — I’ve always thought it — [it’s] a little bit like addiction for him,” he says. “He’s in this constant world of darkness. There’s no light at the end of the tunnel, and he’s not searching for light. This is where he is and he’s accepted it, and if there’s ever any relief for him I think it’s watching someone take his last breath or seeing the fear in his eyes. It does something to him.”
Bernthal adds, “We all have our deepest darkest fears and his have been realised, and everything he does is in reaction to that. So I hope we’ve made a version [of The Punisher] that’s brutal enough to do it justice and has enough art to give him justice.”
It’s All About the Emotion
Showrunner Steve Lightfoot agrees with Bernthal about the necessity of the graphic nature of the violence we see — and picks the fight with Rawlins at the end of Episode 12 as well as the climax to Episode 13 as his favourite scenes.
“I don’t think I can really choose between them,” says Lightfoot. “And the reason it’s those is because there was so much build up to them. Both of those are the final scenes with the villains who have put Frank through so much. And for me, sort of what Jon was saying, I think violence for its own sake is one thing, but when there’s so much emotion attached to it, and the whole season has been about those two scenes, what I love about those [is] there’s just so much emotion in them. They’re both really sad scenes in the end and I just love what Jon and the other cast did.”
The Punisher premieres on Netflix on November 17.