These are two issues I read today. I am combining them into one entry because they are both one-shots and therefore outside of any current storylines running through their titles. Surprisingly, I liked both of them quite a bit. I usually hate one-shots because they just steal my money because they can. I read Punisher Max: Get Castle and Wolverine: Under the Boardwalk.
The cover date for Under the Boardwalk is February 2010. I have mentioned several times that I am sick of Wolverine and any one-shots they do with him. Its the over-exposure thing. Plus, I feel like there are so many stories that could be written with other characters but writers just seem to keep hammering Wolverine. Eventually, I believe, the well will run dry, and the character will be ruined. Supersaturation is not a good thing. That being said, I did not buy this issue full price. It was one of the 40% off back issues, but the cover price is $3.99. I grudgingly bought it because, well, I am a comics nut. I was not excited to read it – assuming it would just be another issue of blood and guts.
The cover is pretty cool, though, right? It was done by Thomas Coker and Daniel Freedman
Wasn’t I pleasantly surprised?! This one shot has quite a bit less blood and guts compared to all the other one-shots of the previous two years. And, it has a storyline that is readable. Its not just pointless “watch Wolverine slash some dudes!” I really appreciate that. Thank you writer Stuart Moore for a real story! The ending, i.e. the last three pages, is really good as well. Overall, the story has a noir feel to it, as Wolverine traipses through some old memories peppered by women and gangsters. Nicely done.
This issue I got as part of my subscription to the regular PunisherMAX title. Immediately, I was put off by the Brit flag in the background. But I do like non-busy covers. This looks like the Punisher in the rain in England? Still, for $4.99 I was somewhat annoyed.
Its a MAX title, so you know there’s gonna be some “stuff” in it. Which is okay. Its the Punisher, remember. (Oh, as an aside, my eye caught somewhere that Marvel has a Punisher Noir miniseries. I would like to check this out. Does it take place in the 1920’s? That tickles me.) Anyway, no doubt there is some “adult” material inside, but its not just for show. There is a storyline! Imagine my joy – two one-shots with characters known for their blood and guts and yet I find actual storytelling! So, Punisher goes to England, and removes some of the corruption in a little town there. Corruption caused by some squad of Britain’s elite fighting force. Throughout, we are reminded that patience and careful reconnaissance are what make the Punisher successful. Also, there is a hint that Castle still understands the symbols and loyalty of a military unit.
At the end, Punisher doesn’t hesitate to do what he’s gotta do. All in all, a worthwhile story. Written by Rob Williams.