Brandon Borzelli's Geek Goggle Reviews
Max (Marvel Comics)
Aaron, Dillon & Hollingsworth
Jason Aaron is on a roll lately. He's created an amazing world in Scalped, a fresh take on Wolverine in Wolverine Weapon X and he is telling a great story with powerful characters in Punishermax. This issue is no different than the strength found in the first three issues, but this issue is more focused on action. While previous issues have been spent building up Kingpin, this issue brings the focus squarely on the Punisher and how he faces the unstoppable foe. This is a comic worth picking up if you like classic Punisher fights.
The Mennonite shows up at Rigoletto's door ready to take on the Punisher. The character was introduced last issue and this issue helps to solidify him as a force to be reckoned with. After he declines using firearms to take on the Punisher, it would appear this hitman is the underdog.
The Punisher finds Kingpin but before he can act he's ambushed by the Mennonite. This is an effective and believable way to cast the Punisher as the underdog. He's taken off guard by a brute. The Punisher is unable to draw firepower to combat the Mennonite before both of the Punisher's hands get broken. This might be the only reasonable way to keep a fight with the Punisher going for an issue and keep it believable. This is a character that usually shoots first and often.
As the issue gets wrapped up the Kingpin manages to rise to his full power in New York City as the Punisher is in a world of hurt. This comic manages to position two characters above the Punisher in the pecking order and that is nothing short of an amazing feat considering neither have any sort of superpowers.
The art is amazing as ever. This issue is all out bloody action and Dillon's style provides a detailed step-by-step glimpse into the fight. It's precise and manages to keep a fast pace without leaving any of the action off panel or assumed. This was a fantastic display of comic book art.
Punishermax is bringing into the fold characters that have roots in the regular Marvel Universe, but can be reinvented in the MAX Universe where they are more grounded in reality. We are seeing this in this arc and issue. The fight between the Punisher and Mennonite is a street brawl. Sure, both bodies take more punishment than seems possible for any one human being but it works because the characters have such tough personalities in this comic book. There is a lot to like here because of the characters involved and the story flowing quickly and naturally. This is definitely a comic book worth checking out.
4 out of 5 Geek Goggles