Review: Punisher War Journal: Brother #1 (2022) by Torunn Grønbekk, Rafael Pimentel & Matt Milla

Punisher War Journal: Brother by Torunn Grønbekk, Rafael Pimentel & Matt Milla was a very entertaining comic book that reminded me of the classic Punisher stories. It’s action packed with a very simple premise that pits Frank Castle against the “world”, which is great.

A network of criminals are attempting to hunt down Frank Castle at any cost, including paying big bucks to anyone who can send information about his location or kill Frank. This leads to Frank having to watch his back from the general public, including ignorant bystanders such as kids to civilian opportunists. I really liked the detail of all the payments to these individuals being made by non-traceable funds (Bitcoin).

The question about Frank’s lack of firearms continues to be a major problem. Frank goes against heavily armed foes with just a katana and the practicality of this is nonsense. Despite this bit of a “problem”, the story was well structured and was very entertaining. So far, this is the best War Journal one shot for this current run, if we compare it with “Blitz” already reviewed here.

The big appearance of this book was destined to be a well known character from Punisher fans. Long time Punisher nemesis, Jigsaw, makes his big debut in this issue, looking to cash in the bounty on Frank’s head. It was nice to see Jigsaw back in action and his battle with Frank made up some great action panels. It’s funny how Frank has been taunted by his villains about how he changed his ways in this run and Jigsaw’s shots at Frank are no exception.

I must say that at first, I didn’t like the artwork of Rafael Pimentel or even how Matt Milla colored the first pages. The art style didn’t give off the grit expected of The Punisher, but after page 5 it did really grow on me. Rafael Pimentel and Matt Milla did great work on the artwork and coloring this issue.

Overall Thoughts

It’s odd seeing ninja Frank take on foes armed mainly with his katana, when we are so used to seeing The Punisher with firearms, a ka-bar and his fists…any tool to get the job done effectively. So far, Frank has displayed poor swordsmanship and failed to take out a simple Hand instructor in the current ongoing, which doesn’t seem to justify his reliance on swords.

Aside from this big detail, I can’t complain much about how this issue. It’s entertaining with top notch action scenes and a simple story that fits perfectly with the Punisher.

Overall Rate: 7.5 /10


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