Comic Vine Review


Punisher: War Zone #5 Review


Greg Rucka's run with Frank Castle ends here!

The Good

Greg Rucka's time with Frank Castle has come to an end and I'm happy to say it's one helluva swan song. You know you've just read something special when your immediate reaction is a slow clap once you're done with the read.

We all know Frank has a zero percent chance of fully eluding or defeating the Avengers -- but that's not his goal, now is it? Castle just wants to save Rachel Alves from the system, and that feat is far more obtainable. But now that he has her, how can he save her from all of the Avengers? Well, Rucka knows exactly how Frank would react in this situation and, believe it or not, the fight against the Avengers is written in a mostly believable and highly entertaining manner (Spider-Man's speed is downplayed at one time). It's a safe bet you'll be seeing this one in Friday's 'Best Battles' feature.

The script is tight and absolutely hysterical at times (most notably with Iron Man). This may be Frank's last stand against impossible odds, but Rucka still manages to make it an action packed event that'll give you quite a few chuckles ("Spider-Man's never going to let me hear the end of this.").

The art is a little rough around the edges at times (especially when characters aren't close up), but overall it's a good looking issue filled with plenty of cool panels. We're treated to everything from Thor's lightning to Iron Man's high tech vision modes.

The Bad

The art feels a bit rushed at times, but aside from that this is a solid conclusion.

The Verdict

This issue comes as a double-edged sword. On one end, it's a stellar conclusion to Rucka's run with Frank and a wonderful way to end the story. On the other end, it's the end of Rucka's run and that's something to be sad about! It certainly ends on a very interesting note and I'm very anxious to see if Marvel is crafting a follow-up to this conclusion. He's leaving the character(s) with a lot of potential and I would love to see the story continue. Regardless, this is definitely a must read for any Punisher fan out there.

Posted by Bluefox170

Such a great run and spectacular ending, I certainly wouldn't mind a follow up on this cliffhanger.

Posted by Cap10nate

What a great issue. I loved Rucka's whole run and this was a fantastic conclusion.

Posted by HushoftheWind

Man if Frank had 2 more people with him(Maybe somebody to negate Thor and Iron Man) i think he would won the day. Ol way, Frank did a damn good job taking on the 5 Avengers.

Edited by Mucklefluga

I wish it wasn't cancelled! It would've been cool to see their whole plans pan out. Perfect conclusion to the story tho.

Posted by HollowPrince665

Is there a new Punisher series coming up after this? or is this going to be a conclusion for a while?

Posted by Bionder

@HollowPrince665: Steve Wacker hint us with something at the end of the issue.

It's probably something related to "Marvel 1st" thing that no one knows about it.

Posted by HollowPrince665

@Bionder: I hope so. I got into Punisher way way that I mean like Warzone #1. I'd love to continue with Frank and Rachel. I'd also love it if they'd have shown a bit of Matt and Rachel...all well. Maybe if the series wasn't being cancelled.

Posted by MSchiwal

I loved Rucka`s Punisher.... but the ending made me despise Thunderbolts even more

Posted by Captain_Yesterday

@MSchiwal: I refuse to even acknowledge that comic.

Fantastic ending by Rucka.

Sad thing is now The Punisher is in comic book limbo, because the Thunderbolts doesn't exist.

Posted by MadeinBangladesh

Thank You Greg Rucka!! What an awesome Punisher Run!!!

Now Punisher is stuck in Way's Crappyass Thunderbolts. -_-

Posted by MSchiwal

my only explanation is that thunderbolts Punisher is not frank. no scar over his left eye. obviously its a skrull 

Posted by CBninja

Loved the story. My only complaint is how downplayed spiderman was in one scene.

Posted by Trevel8182

@Bionder: Or maybe Wacker's being a troll as usual.

Posted by NICKXH

Why didn't Marco Chechetto do any of the interiors?

Posted by Agent_Prince

Rucka deserved better, and is one of my favorite writers. Having his run cancelled and replaced with a 5-part Avengers team up (that still requires the reader to have read the ongoing series anyway) is like a sick joke. Don't get me wrong, it's a very good series, but the ending was pretty predictable, and didn't need 5 issues to get there either. Still, a suitable conclusion nonetheless. So while Frank is off being drawn oddly in Thunderbolts, it looks like we'll be seeing a new Punisher on the streets.....

Posted by silentecko711

Can Anybody tell me whats going on with The Punisher's eye ??? I didnt get a chance to pick this series up But its killing me to know if he lost it or is it healed by now

Posted by Manbehindthewires

No more Rucka or Punisher in the foreseeable future...sad times :(

Posted by ThexX

@MadeinBangladesh said:

Thank You Greg Rucka!! What an awesome Punisher Run!!!

Now Punisher is stuck in Way's Crappyass Thunderbolts. -_-


Posted by neiliusprime

This issue was phenomenal. Rucka's run on Punisher is probably my top favorite out of all the Punisher stories. I just hope we can see something in the future with the ending ;)

Posted by longbowhunter

Bravo Rucka. This was a perfect ending to a perfect run. Wish it had lasted longer...thanks Marvel.

Posted by sparty-dbq

I just realized that this is not only the end of Rucka's Punisher run, but it's also the last comic book (for the foreseeable future, anyway) to feature the real Peter Parker as Spider-Man. And now I'm doubly sad.

Posted by Bionder

@Manbehindthewires:We got the Punisher in that "Marvel's 1st" thing or whatever that is. Soon we will now more info.

Posted by krexxxx4

Did no one else notice the scene where cap is in his civilian clothes and then on the very next panel he is in his costume? My only nit pick for this issue... It's a shame they had to cancel such a great run.

Posted by SavageDragon

@MadeinBangladesh said:

Thank You Greg Rucka!! What an awesome Punisher Run!!!

Now Punisher is stuck in Way's Crappyass Thunderbolts. -_-

Agreed. A solid ending to a great Run, Ruckas Punisher was great.

@silentecko711: He got its messed up/really damaged against this new mutant Vulture dude in the first trade of the Rucka series. Pretty awesome sky battle.

Posted by k4tzm4n

@SavageDragon: Oh man, that fight was vicious.

Posted by SavageDragon

Great ending to an even better run.

Btw does anyone know what was with Franks hand at the very end.

Posted by Ren_

This mini was perfect. I'm really not a Punisher fan, but I am very much a Greg Rucka fan and Rachel Alves has always intrigued me.

Honestly picked this up just to see how Widow was handled, as much as I did for the actual story.

Wasn't disappointed on either count.

Posted by k4tzm4n

@SavageDragon said:

Great ending to an even better run.

Btw does anyone know what was with Franks hand at the very end.

Posted by SavageDragon

@k4tzm4n: Ok yeah i re read it again and I see that after that hit his hand was mangled, then to add insult injury Peter webbed his mangled hand forcefully to Franks own chest. His hand is probably badly broken along with his fingers. But at the "Bone" prison it showed Punisher with what looks like a mechanical hand and forearm, do you think thats just a advanced Stark Industry's cast for repairing broken limbs, or do you think that they had to surgically attach cybernetic implants to Franks hand and arm? Im not sure either way cause it looks like it is attached pretty seamlessly down his forearm and at the last shot of Frank he's examining a pick or slim piece of metal of some kind. Crazy.