A fully-stocked armory of weapons the rain destruction and punishment down upon the criminals of the Marvel Universe has never been something that Frank Castle as been lacking. This fall for Marvel Legacy, he’ll gain one of the greatest weapons he’s ever had.
As revealed by Newsarama, the brand new creative team of Matthew Rosenberg and Guiu Vilanova are coming aboard the ongoing The Punisher series with the new legacy numbered issue #218 and are bringing along the War Machine armor of the recently departed James “Rhodey” Rhodes. The powerful walking weapon that once belonged to a hero will now fall into the hands of someone that lives within the murky gray middle ground.
“Frank is the most goal-driven character in all of comics. He wants to kill bad people. He will use whatever he has at his disposal and take every opportunity he gets to do that, but in the end it’s just about maximum death,” Rosenberg said. “Understanding that, it doesn’t take much to envision a scenario where Frank would get the armor. He wouldn’t take it from Rhodey while he was alive. He respects the man, he respects what he does, and he respects his rank. But with the armor unmanned now, Frank figures it might as well be put to use. ‘A weapon unused is a useless weapon’ and all that. If he could pick up Thor’s hammer, he would. If he could take Wolverine’s claws, he would.”
In the past Castle picked up the legacy of Captain America after Steve Rogers was believed dead, but this time around it will be something very different.
“Frank likes Rhodey. He respects him more than he respects almost any other superhero. Rhodey is a soldier and a man of principle. But that has nothing to do with this,” Rosenberg said. “Frank isn’t taking over for Rhodey or carrying on what he started. Frank is using his weapons after he died to kill bad guys. And that’s how Frank works. There is a logical dissonance for him. He will do whatever he needs to accomplish his goal and nothing else matters. To Frank, it was Rhodey that made War Machine the hero, not the suit. In the same way that if he grabbed Hawkeye’s bow and used it to shoot a mobster he wouldn’t be Hawkeye, he’d just be practical. There are, of course, bigger ramifications and implications by using the armor than he thinks or cares about. But as long as he is putting bad guys in the dirt nothing else matters.”
As for the how of Frank taking on the War Machine armor, that comes down another long-time Marvel character: Nick Fury.
“Nick Fury finds himself backed into a corner. There are messes he wants cleaned up, some of them are of his own making. And Fury has always been good at finding the right tool for the job. In this case, he needs a whole lot of bad people removed from the face of the Earth. There is one person who is very good at that, but he’s not a great team player. In fact, he’s basically a monster,” Rosenberg said. “Nick Fury works in the darkest corners of the Marvel Universe. He does the things heroes won’t or can’t. He is a necessary evil, or at least that’s what he tells himself. But even to him, using someone like the Punisher is a hard pill to swallow. But, like I said, Nick doesn’t have a ton of choices on this so the Punisher becomes an Agent of Fury. Maybe.”
Arriving in November, check out the solicitation & cover for The Punisher #218 below.
THE PUNISHER #218
MATTHEW ROSENBERG (W) • GUIU VILANOVA (A)
Cover by CLAYTON CRAIN
FRANK CASTLE: WAR MACHINE Part 1
For years, Frank Castle has been fighting a one-man war against criminals who endanger the innocent, but when a certain one-eyed operative offers him the tools to take his fight global…how could he say no? Find out how Frank found his way into the WAR MACHINE Armor!