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Daredevil vs. Punisher #3

Posted: Tuesday, August 30, 2005
By: Michael Deeley



Writer/Artist: David Lapham

Publisher: Marvel
Price: $2.99 USD

The Punisher is about to kill Jimmy Sweets, a hit-man who can testify against rising crime lord Hammer head. Daredevil stops him, but they’re all attacked by Bushwacker. Bushwacker and his shape-changing gun arm are working for The Jackal, a.k.a. The Professor, Hammerhead’s brain trust. In true comic book style, the heroes escape and fight Bushwacker later. Sweets talks, and Hammerhead and his boys are arrested. The Punisher decides Daredevil must die.

Meanwhile, Martin Bastelli becomes a hero and gets a girl thanks to his handgun.

We’ve got two stories going on here. The antagonism between Daredevil and Punisher is reaching a new level of intensity. Frank Castle now sees Daredevil as an obstacle in his war against crime. But is Castle actually looking for revenge against The Jackal? The second story is how Martin’s life is being changed by his gun. It’s the kind of story you’d see in Lapham’s Stray Bullets. Lapham does a wonderful job writing this story. The scenes of young Martin shocked by the adult behavior in a nightclub are funny and dead accurate.

I noticed that two different styles of narration are used for DD and Punisher. Daredevil’s actions and thoughts are described in a third-person narrative. It’s the same style used to describe everything else. The Punisher narrates himself in the first-person. This creates a feeling of isolation for The Punisher. Only he tells his story. Daredevil is part of the larger world that The Punisher rejects.

Finally, a few words about Bushwacker: still a loser. Bushwacker is a second-string Daredevil villain with a cybernetic arm that can turn into a gun. He literally eats bullets for ammo. Bushwacker used to be a preacher and a mutant hater, so religion and racism usually drove him. Now he’s been “improved.” He’s learned he is a mutant and can turn both of his arms into weapons. Now he just kills for pleasure. And he gets taken out by a stick. Dork.

At the risk of offending my fellow liberals, I’m made uncomfortable by the new comic book ads for Bod-brand body spray. It’s a drawing of a lean, muscular young man with piercing blue eyes and low hung jeans. Three girls are pictures saying, “I want your Bod”. Honestly, this ad makes me uncomfortable. We’ve got a man flaunting his sexuality. Something about this guy just says, “Do me." To which I immediately answer, “No.” It makes me wonder if Bod is targeting straight men. I also wonder if women really go for guys who look like that.



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