Review: Welcome Back, Frank by Garth Ennis, Steve Dillon and Jimmy Palmietti

“Thats what I’m going for with this series, folks. Entertainment. Plain and Simple. Not a complex analysis of the causes of crime, not a portrait of one man’s tragic descent into murderous psychosis, not an in-depth examination of the vigilante down the ages. Not the recipe for Coca-Cola either, come to that. Just a laugh, a thrill, and plenty of sustained automatic weapons wire for your buck”

Welcome Back

Garth Ennis, writer extraordinaire (Preacher, Judge Dredd, Hellblazer, Hitman) with a bent for black comedy, over the top unapologetic violence, and a signature visceral style, always seemed the perfect candidate to reanimate Marvel’s most brutal vigilante with a more than welcome attitude towards killing – The Punisher.

Punisher fans (read: me, as the only Marvel character I still follow – and diligently so – is him, though I have currently been disillusioned by the whole FrankenCastle business) rejoiced when it was announced that Ennis would not only be writing the character but he would also be bringing in his highly acclaimed team from ‘The Preacher’ series – which meant Steve Dillon on art, and Jimmy Palmietti on inks.

Their first run of 12 issues for the Marvel Knight’s Imprint has been collected together as ‘Welcome Back, Frank’

And what a run it is!

True to its name, this 12 issue series redefined without changing anything what this oft misunderstood character is like. Frank Castle’s one man war against crime has never been so delightfully presented in its whole publication history (in my opinion) and for comic book/graphic novel fans, irrespective of whether you like the character or are familiar with it, this book is highly recommended.