By Kevin Maurer, Nathan Edmondson, Carmen Carnero, Terry Pallot & Antonio Fabela
Frank Castle was shot in the chest in the aftermath of the war against the Dos Soles gang, and has escaped, heading south of the border. However, it wasn’t long before he found himself captured by “El Diablito” Ortiz, a South American crime lord with the intentions of selling him to the highest bidder. However, Frank isn’t alone. He’s got a Special Forces soldier for backup and with the help of a drone; both men have managed to escape. However, their journey isn’t over yet, because Ortiz has found a buyer. And he wants Crossbones to make sure that the Punisher is delivered alive.
That’s basically the plot of El Diablito so far and it’s been pretty intense stuff. Whilst we haven’t seen anything really new to this story, the combination of Kevin Maurer and Nathan Edmondson on this title have been delivering a very good read that helps make this book continue to stand out. We’re well into the series now and it’s maintaining a consistent quality that deserves more readership than it currently has, as it offers some brutal action that should please anyone who’s a fan action blockbusters, because there’s some real fun to be had here.
This issue is very much an action packed but down-to-earth thrill ride that will have you on the edge of your seats from the first page to the last, with some brutal and unpredictable action that weaves a compelling narrative. Taking place entirely in the jungle, this allows Maurer and Edmondson to keep this book feeling fresh after a an arc that mostly took place in a city. The change of location has really helped this book standout and has given Maurer and Edmondson whole new toys to play with
The pencils are handled by Carmen Carnero, who does a pretty good job with a dark, gritty feel, especially when combined with the inks of Terry Pallot and the atmospheric colours of Antonio Fabela. They add another layer of awesomeness to this book and it’s really good that even without Mitch Gerads, the book has been able to find a stable artistic team to take its place.
Punisher #8 isn’t perfect though, and there are a few problems with this issue. A Crossbones/Punisher showdown may have been what some were expecting but this issue didn’t quite deliver on that front. However, with both characters still well and truly in the game then it’s still on the cards for a future showdown, but regardless of whether we get one or not this is still going to be an enjoyable book – purely because Nathan Edmondson and Kevin Maurer are handling the character so well.
Whilst we may not be getting an entirely new Punisher story, Kevin Maurer and Nathan Edmondson are weaving a tale that keeps a fresh feel from what we’ve had before and will keep satisfying fans of the character. The book’s creative team is certainly the right choice for the title and it’ll be interesting to see where this book goes from here.