Writer: Fred Van Lente / Artist: Pere Perez / Marvel Comics
This book is back at it again in the white Vans! The lull that came across in the second book was really just the set-up to one hell of an upset for issue #3.The plot here is thicker than grits left out overnight:
Punisher (The Bank’s enemy) is using Deadpool (The Bank’s friend) to help him take out The Bank (organized-crime money launderer) by getting Pooly D shot in the head and scrambling his memory each issue. On top of Frankie giving Wade the runaround, Marvel is breaking out its biggest A-list fighting B-list villain: Taskmaster to round out this exposé of the organized crime world of the 616. I know everybody sleeps on Taskmaster, but he is used by the writers to assess Punisher and Deadpool’s skills in a series of kickass voiceovers where readers get to see why he’s a pro and deserves your respect.
There is some serious character and world development going on here. If any of this underworld narrative carries over into the overall continuity, the street level of the Marvel comic universe will hold real weight with indispensable characters and stories. DVP3 gives us a three-dimensional Deadpool seemingly experiencing loss for the first time and a fun to read Punisher doing what he does second best (behind Logan, of course).
For the low, low price of one issue we get Taskmaster chopping heads off with his off-brand Cap shield, Punisher grinding out the “Chimichanga” war cry, The Bank getting in over his head with the Serpent Society, and two bombshells: Taskmaster trains ALL of the 616 organized crime goons in combat AND The Bank uses his adolescent son’s savant math skills to keep his money off the books!
For a one-shot, Deadpool vs. Punisher is making some big waves. I hope nobody sleeps on this series, it’s proving that more than just large-scale crossover events deserve your respect.
Reading Deadpool vs The Punisher? Find BNP’s other reviews of the series here.