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MAX (Earth-200111) Punisher
AKA: Francis David Castiglione/Frank Castle
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #129 (1974)A traumatized former Marine turned brutal vigilante, Frank Castle lost his family in the crossfire from a Mafia conflict, and declared his own personal war on the criminal underworld using a vast arsenal of weaponry. He mainly works alone, his relations with the superhero community being strained at best.
"They laugh at the law. The rich ones who buy it and twist it to their whims. The other ones, who have nothing to lose. Who don't care about themselves, or other people. All the ones who think they're above the law, or outside it, or beyond it. They know all the law is good for is to keep good people in line. And they all laugh. They laugh at the law. But they don't laugh at me."
- Aesop Amnesia: In his first appearances in Spider-Man comics, he would repeatedly think that Spider-Man is a criminal, only to learn that he truly is a good guy that he says he is at the end of the story. But then again, this is Spider-Man we're talking about.
- Anti-Hero: Varies between an Unscrupulous Hero and Nominal Hero in the Marvel Universe. He spends his days on two things: Killing the worst scum on earth and planning to kill the worst scum on earth.
- Ax-Crazy: Depending on the Writer, he's a calculating killing machine or a nut who offs criminals for the sake of it.
- Badass Beard: On occasion when it goes beyond his usual Perma-Stubble. He sported one for most of Greg Rucka's run.
- Badass Longcoat: He frequently dons a black trenchcoat.
- Badass Normal: Castle has no superpowers of his own, and typically most of his foes are either just mooks or other badass normals. However, he has gone toe-to-toe with various superheroes and villains in the past.
- Badasses Wear Bandanas: A bandana was a regular part of his ensemble during the nineties, usually in stories drawn by Jim Lee.
- Berserk Button: Hurting kids.
- Blood Knight: Why does Frank kill? 33% justice, 33% revenge, 33% because he likes it, and the other 1% is just plain Ax-Crazy.
- Celibate Hero: Modern characterization; he used to border on Really Gets Around, though it was almost always nothing more than a fling, being caught up in the heat of the moment, or simply satiating an annoying biological urge.
- Chest Insignia: The Punisher's iconic skull. Like Batman, it serves as a heavily armored target and in the earlier issues the teeth were spare ammo magazines.
- Cold Sniper: Has the persona and was one in Vietnam.
- Colonel Kilgore: Even though he was only a Captain in Vietnam, he still fits this trope
- Combat Pragmatist: The following quote from "Welcome Back, Frank" sums it up:Frank Castle: "When you're on your own, behind enemy lines, no artillery, no air strikes, no hope of an evac, you don't fight dirty. You do things that make dirty look good."
- Cool Mask: During Edmondson's run, Punisher sported a balaclava with his skull insignia on it.
- Crusading Widower: He seeks vengeance then effects genocide on the American criminal element for the murder of his family during a botched mob hit.
- Deadpan Snarker: Frank occasionally shows a sense of Black Humor.
- Death Seeker: It has been suggested more than once that Castle's ultimate goal in life is suicide by gangster.
- The Don: Became briefly one for the Geracis, a minor crime family in New York, after they rescued him from an electric chair and convinced him that the best way to fight the crime is to control it.
- The Dreaded: Every crook and mobster (and most "street" level supervillains) brown their trousers at the mere mention of Frank.
- Empowered Badass Normal
- When he was recruited to be an agent for Heaven, he gained an ability to summon weapons from his jacket and make them as lethal as he wanted them to be.
- After his death at the hands of Wolverine's son Daken during the Dark Reign event, he was built into a Frankensteinian Mix-and-Match Man who was physically much stronger in undeath than in life.
- Evil Wears Black: He's easily the darkest of Marvel's nominally heroic characters, and his all black costume (military-goth chic, as Spider-Man dubs it) is intended to contrast with the brightly colored outfits of the more traditional superheroes.
- Eyepatch of Power: Sported one for most of Greg Rucka's run, after he nearly lost an eye during a battle with the sixth Vulture.
- The Friend Nobody Likes: Among the Marvel super hero community Frank is easily the most reviled. Even Namor, post Phoenix Five, has a few other heroes that he can call friend. Frank has absolutely no support among the larger hero community because he deems himself Judge, Jury, and Executioner to virtually every criminal he meets. Even people that are willing to put up with that won't work with him because he point blank refuses to compromise, even for the sake of pragmatism. The closest thing he's had to a consistent ally is Wolverine, and even then it's a Vitriolic Best Buds (really Depending on the Writer) thing.
- Friend to All Children: While not necessarily good with kids, Frank nonetheless is shown to have a soft spot for them.
- Good Is Not Nice: He isn't a very pleasant individual, but he nonetheless hunts down the worst of the criminals.
- He Who Fights Monsters: Skirts the line here a lot.
- I Work Alone: Repeatedly discussed. In his opinion, "no one should be like me."
- Iconic Item: His skull T-shirt.
- Immune to Mind Control: Once No Selled a sexuality-based mind control power from two villainesses who ordered Spider-Man to attack him (something about his using his reptilian brain more than other brain functions).
- Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique: Frank's a big fan of this.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He may be a violent, deranged sociopath and a jerk to almost everyone he meets but it's shown that Frank does genuinely care about the people he saves and his few friends.
- Karmic Thief: He swipes the cash that he finds on his raids to finance the war.
- Knife Nut: If Frank uses a close combat weapon, it'll be a knife.
- Knight Templar: At his most brutal, he's this. He's still on the side of good, but his methods are way beyond what most people find acceptable and his moral absolutist tendencies generally don't help sway anyone.
- Lightning Bruiser: What he lacks in straight heroic based powers (Super Speed, durability, strength) He makes up for in highly trained reflexes, sheer determination, and the upmost brutality he brings to the table in any bouts.
- Mentor: To Rachel Cole-Alves. Might qualify as an Evil Mentor depending on how you want to look at it.
- Mighty Glacier: As Franken-Castle, he was much stronger than in life but since he lacked the muscle memory of his old self, he was much slower and cumbersome in combat.
- More Dakka: His solution to most problems
- Never Hurt an Innocent: One of the reasons why the Punisher is an Anti Hero. Well, he won't kill innocents, and he probably won't give them any permanent injuries.
- Nineties Anti-Hero: The Ur-Example despite debuting in the '70s.
- One-Man Army: Toyed with. So long as Frank remains within his own weight class (baseline human and just above), his Marine training, tactical skill, and vast arsenal will give him a significant edge, and enable him to mow down Mooks as if it were going out of style. Put him up against a superhuman adversary, conversely, and it's frequently all he can do to stay alive.
- Pay Evil unto Evil: This trope defines him
- Papa Wolf: The catalyst for his continuous Roaring Rampage of Revenge against criminals everywhere is his family being killed.
- Perma-Stubble: Quite regularly.
- Perpetual Frowner: Frank's default expression.
- Powered Armor: He had to resort to using this against the Reavers, a pair of thugs hopped up on a kind of "super-PCP" and the Red Hulk.
- Phrase Catcher: When Frank enters a room, the response is usually some variation of...
- Rape Is a Special Kind of Evil: While Frank Castle hunts down, kills, and tortures every criminal he comes across, he has an extra hatred towards rapists and reserves the worst form of torture he can think of for them (particularly sex traffickers and child rapists).
- Semper Fi: Frank was a marine.
- Shell-Shocked Veteran: Frank definitely fits the bill. After three brutal tours of duty in The Vietnam War, Frank Castle lost his wife and children to Mafia thugs and now wages a one-man war on crime. Various authors have toyed with Frank's mental state, and Garth Ennis has suggested that in Vietnam, Frank started to love combat and killing people, with the death of his family possibly being only the final straw that caused his killing sprees.
- Sociopathic Hero: The comic book mascot of this trope. He was, by far, the most popular costumed "superhero" to kill his enemies rather than putting them to jail. And he's been doing it way before The Dark Age of Comic Books.
- The Stoic: Frank is either calm, detached, and homicidal, or (much more rarely) pissed off and homicidal. That's it. To quote the 2005 videogame (written by Garth Ennis):*after blasting Bushwacker through a wall* I don't smile much. Don't smile ever. But if I did, this would be one.
- That Man Is Dead: A favorite saying of his; Frank Castle died with his family. He's the Punisher.
- Tragic Hero: Despite gunning down organized crime as fast as he can, it never ceases to exist, which condemns him to do it until the day he dies.
- Torture Technician: Push one of his Berserk Buttons, and you'll wish he was just using the Jack Bauer Interrogation Technique.
- Ungrateful Bastard: Rare 'heroic' version. If you aid the Punisher, even save his life repeatedly, don't expect him to show much gratitude if you're on his 'bad' list. Or his 'good' list either, as Yorkie has found out.
- Vigilante Man: One of the ultimate examples in the Marvel Universe
- Villain Protagonist: Sometimes, most notably in Greg Rucka's 2009 War Zone miniseries when he goes up against the Avengers.
- Villainous Underdog: Given how underpowered he is compared to most superheroes, any story in which he's the bad guy is likely to make him this. Notable examples include his early Spider-Man and Daredevil appearances, and especially War Zone (2009) miniseries where he goes up against The Avengers with nothing but his guns and his tactical acumen.
- Villainous Widow's Peak: When Frank was still an antagonist in his early appearances, he had a pronounced widow's peak.
- Would Hit a Girl: Castle has no problems killing female villains.
AKA: David Linus Lieberman
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 2, #4 (1987)A computer and engineering whiz, Linus "Microchip" Lieberman joined the Punisher's crusade after his nephew was murdered under orders of the Kingpin, and worked alongside the vigilante for years, becoming the closest thing Frank had to a best friend. Unfortunately, a series of tragedies and clashing ideologies led to the two butting heads, and becoming bitter enemies, which ultimately led to Micro's death at the hands of a rogue S.H.I.E.L.D. agent called Stone Cold.
"I hacked computers to find him targets. I customized guns and ammunition. I put him in the right place at the right time to kill the maximum number of people; without me the body count for those ten years would be a third of what it is. I turned a lone gunman into a machine that runs at optimum efficiency. Because of me, what he does can be truly defined as war."
- Back from the Dead: He's Resurrected for a Job by the Hood. Micro is initially peeved, claiming he was fine with being dead, but is convinced to go along with the Hood's plans after the villain promises to also bring back Micro's son, Louis.
- Killed Off for Real: He was first killed by a rocket launched by Stone Cold, and later had his throat sliced open by the Punisher.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: Even people who didn't know about his activities usually just called him "Micro" or "Chip". Frank refers to him by his first name once during their entire partnership.
Debut: The Punisher War Zone #1 (1992)A low (almost subterranean) level criminal, Mickey was strong-armed by the Punisher into helping him infiltrate the Carbone crime family. After that misadventure, the Punisher reluctantly kept Mickey around as a source of information regarding the various goings-on in the criminal underworld.
Punisher: You know better than to lie to me, Mickey.
Mickey: You're nuts. You can't do this to me.
Punisher: That's where you're wrong. I asked you a question and you tell me you're not connected anymore.
Mickey: Buh-but you kill connected guys.
Punisher: Not ones I have a use for. Give me something big.
- Accidental Misnaming: Mickey referred to Frank as "Johnny", the alias he was using when they first met.
- Adaptation Name Change: Fondozzi became Duka in the 2004 film.
- Chronic Villainy: Despite being a main source of information for the Punisher, he tended to be embroiled in various petty crimes whenever Frank contacted him. Frank had to remind him of their arrangement. Often with extreme prejudice. Mickey at least once tried to use this to his advantage by ripping off counterfeiters with the intention of siccing the Punisher on them, but Frank was out that day, so Mickey ended up with Microchip instead.
- Fauxreigner: He managed to become a made man despite the fact that he's not Italian. He's actually Albanian.
- Heel–Face Turn: In the original Marvel Knights series, he got hit by one of Dagger's light daggers, which sometimes cure someone's criminal impulses. Seeing that he genuinely turned over a new leaf, Frank let him be.
- The Informant: Whether he liked it or not.
- Running Gag: Mickey's small-time criminal venture du jour (cigarettes, car parts, bootleg videos, counterfeit jeans, etc.) is shut down in an over-the-top violent fashion by the Punisher.
- Suspiciously Similar Substitute: The Resurrection of Ma Gnucci saw the introduction of Charles B. Schitti, a similarly downtrodden and low-level mob affiliate who the Punisher agrees to spare in exchange for his aid against a crime family.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 5, #2 (200)Martin Soap was dropped on his head seconds after being born, and things just went downhill from there, from being abandoned as a child to becoming the New York Police Department's biggest joke, and the sole member of the pointless "Punisher Taskforce". After the Punisher dismantled the Gnucci crime family, the hapless Soap became his informant within the NYPD.
"You know how they say it can't rain all the time? They're lying through their teeth. Really. I should know, I've been getting rained on my whole life."
- Bigger Is Better in Bed: Apparently. At the end of the series he's left the force and found a career in porn.
- Butt Monkey: He's the biggest joke in the NYPD.
- The Chew Toy: Some of his highlights include getting dropped on the head as a newborn, finding an ax murderer by getting drunk and sleeping with him, going out with an obvious crossdresser, and accidentally dating his own mother.
- Childhood Brain Damage: A variation of the trope occurs: We see the nurse dropping him on his head just after being born, but he doesn't end up with any mental handicap for it (it's just there to show the crap life shoves on him started very early and never let up).
- Interrupted Suicide The first time he tried to commit suicide, the Punisher talks him out of it and convinces him to be a mole for him. The second time, he Ate His Gun in the restroom of his favorite bar, but the bartender stops him, though only so he wouldn't have to clean up the blood. This leads to...
- Took a Level in Badass: He threatens the cruel bartender, breaks the nose of a snitch, and even shoots the Punisher and almost arrests him. Then subverted almost immediately as the Punisher just gives him a mean look in the middle of his attempted arrest and Soap breaks down whimpering.
Colonel Yorkie Mitchell
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 6, #18 (2002)A British officer who served with Castle in Vietnam. Shows up periodically to provide intelligence or recruit Frank for a mission in Britain.
"He's going to kill you. Not over me. You're going up against him, so he'll kill you. Because you're a joke in spite of it all, and he's the most dangerous man that ever walked this earth."
- Ascended Extra: His only appearance in the main Marvel Universe was in the story Downtown. He was promoted to a recurring character in the MAX series, showing up in Kitchen Irish, Man of Stone, Long Cold Dark and Get Castle.
- Badass Mustache: He's an old British soldier, so him having one is requisite.
- Mister Exposition: When it comes to The Troubles.
- Old Friend: Well, as much as you can be one to the Punisher.
- Old Soldier: He's in his fifties, at least.
- Secret Intelligence Service: Although still very much on the military side.
Debut: Punisher Vol. 7, #1 (2009)The bastard son of Frank's archnemesis Jigsaw, Henry becomes the third Microchip and the youngest of Frank's allies.
"Knowing how much he hated you made you my favorite person in the world."
- Abusive Parents: Jigsaw, unsurprisingly.
- Friend to All Living Things: Rescued a pair of kittens but was forced to kill them when his father threatened to kill his mother. He's also a vegetarian. This doesn't extend to the criminals he aids Frank in killing, though.
- Kindhearted Cat Lover
- Hero Worship: Towards the Punisher, his father's worst enemy.
- Shoo the Dog: Recieves it from Frank at the end of In The Blood: Frank, who has come to view Henry as a son, regrets putting him in danger. So he threatens to kill him if he ever sees him again.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 9, #1 (2011)A Marine sergeant and decorated Afghan War veteran, Rachel saw her husband and entire wedding party die when they got in the way of a gangland hit ordered by Stephanie Gerard and Chris Poulsen. She worked alongside the Punisher for a time, eventually donning the same skull insignia worn by him.
"But I feel. I can't stop. God, I've tried, and I can't stop... and you do, too, I know you do... the gnawing that isn't anger and isn't rage and isn't guilt but it's all of it, a thousand times over. Feeding on you, devouring you, stealing your breath and you never stop seeing it... seeing them..."
- Anti-Hero: Unscrupulous Heroine. Possibly a Nominal Heroine by the end.
- Broken Bird: Though she notes that's she still far from being on Castle's level ("No one can be like you").
- Captain Ersatz: Her backstory is lifted from the Bride from Kill Bill.
- Chest Insignia: Castle allows her to wear a copy of his chestplate and its skull insignia.
- Dark Action Girl: Given her general instability she fits this better than Action Girl.
- Distaff Counterpart: To Frank Castle.
- Evil Wears Black: Mimics Frank in this regard.
- Fiery Redhead: Rachel's even less stable than Frank, and has flaming red hair.
- Foil: To Castle, with her fiery temper and immediate need for revenge, contrasting his cold-blooded pragmatism. She's him as he was at the start of his career.
- Guns Akimbo: As prone to Frank at charging in with a weapon in each hand.
- Hot-Blooded: Contrasting the far icier Castle.
- Insistent Terminology: She prefers to be called by the last name of Alves instead of Cole, as she took her husband's name upon being married.
- Legacy Character: Preceded by Lynn Michaels as the "Lady Punisher".
- More Dakka: Shares Castle's conviction that bullets solve all problems, and that more bullets solve more problems.
- Murder by Mistake: Kills Detective Walter Bolt when she panics and mistakes him for Poulsen.
- Put on a Bus / The Bus Came Back: Rucka's run ended with Frank taking on the Avengers to distract them and allow her to escape, with her ending up continuing her vigilantism in Los Angeles. Edmonson's run features the Punisher in LA, however, she only appears once during the storyline, giving Frank a car ride, and has not appeared since.
- Nineties Anti-Hero: Evokes this in her mimicry of Castle.
- Revenge: Wants revenge on Gerard and Poulsen.
- Revenge Before Reason: Repeatedly jeopardizes her own safety and Frank's in order to get at Gerard and Poulsen.
- Semper Fi: Like Castle she's a former Marine.
- That Man Is Dead: Forced to cut all ties to her past by Castle.
- Woman in Black: Wears a black special ops suit at first, and then dons a replica of Castle's Punisher costume.
"My own list of troublemakers? Let's just say it's getting shorter all the time. However, some of them seem to keep coming back, like the pain from an old wound..."
— The Punisher, The Punisher Annual Vol. 2, #5 ("The Punisher's Top Ten Villains!")
AKA: Billy "The Beaut" Russo
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #161 (1976)A hitman for the Maggia and the Costa crime family, pretty-boy Billy "The Beaut" Russo had his face mangled when the Punisher shoved him through a plate glass window. Left with a tattered mess of a face, Billy took the name Jigsaw, and set about doing his best to ruin Castle's life.
"See, guy, see—before I get to the punchline I gotta back up a second. Let me tell you about Frank—let me tell you about the Punisher. Because he's—he's my—see, the first time we met, I was just this guy, y'know? I was this, I was this guy, I had my things goin' and he—well, he's got his thing goin' too. And our things, they don't go together so well. So the guy—the guy who kills so many, so often—me he decides not to kill. Me he decides to just put through a window. Again and again and again. Frank Castle just kinda drives me a little crazy. See? Just you look at what that maniac brings out of me. We scrap. We tussle. Loads of times, me and him. And you know what? I can't never seal the deal and he—he always lets me live. A little worse for wear, of course. I'm tellin' you, Irish, he's like a kid what pulls off the wings off flies just to watch 'em wiggle. He digs the torture. I mean, what kind of sick, sad, insane—what kind of lunatic—"
- Abusive Parents: Billy abused his son Henry, even forcing him to kill a cat that he had let inside by telling him that he'd kill his mother if he didn't.
- Affably Evil: In Matt Fraction's The Punisher War Journal, he's extremely personable (if still a psychotic sociopath). Probably because he's tired of the whole "try to kill the Punisher" circus and just wants to move on with his life.
- Archenemy: He's the closest thing that Castle has to one, being one of his few recurring enemies, his Evil Counterpart and, in his mind, The Only One Allowed to Defeat You.
- Axe Crazy
- Back from the Dead: Frank actually did kill him during the "Jigsaw Puzzle" arc, but his boss The Rev brougt him back to life. He also came back after being shot through the head during John Ostrander's run, but there was no explanation for that.
- Big Bad: Of most arcs he appears in.
- Bishōnen: Billy used to be this. Then the Punisher got his hands on him...
- Butt Monkey: Sometimes played this way.
- Chest Insignia: When dressed in his knockoff of the Punisher's costume.
- Cold-Blooded Torture: He and the Hood inflicted this on Tigra when they captured her.
- Create Your Own Villain: Year One revealed it was Jigsaw who the Costas hired to tie up all of the loose ends connected to the massacre of the Castle family. After surviving the bomb that Billy planted in his house, Frank (now the Punisher) tracked down and mutilated him, turning him into Jigsaw.Punisher: When I do my job, it gets done. No screw-ups, no errors, no mistakes. So yes, you are going to die. But not tonight. You'll die next time I see you. Tonight, you're going to live, so you can tell the Costas face to face how they're going to die. Tell them there is a soldier after them. An instrument of justice. A punisher. Tell them I won't be long. Now look at that.Billy: What? The cops outside?Punisher: No... your reflection, "Beaut" Russo. Remember it.
- Evil Counterpart: Has worn a copy of the Punisher's costume during some runs (first during Circle of Blood when he was a member of the Trust's brainwashed Punishment squad). During War Journal Vol. 2, his outfit was a color inverted version of the Punisher's (white suit with a black skull) while in the John Ostrander series it had normal coloration, but with a grey-ish tint to the white and lots of sutures. He has also has trained himself to be Frank's physical match.
- Genre Savvy: Every now and then. In the Suicide Run arc, Jigsaw shows up at a meeting between several big wig criminals for the sole purpose of telling them that no matter what they have planned; Frank will turn it back on them and kill them. During John Ostander's run, when Jigsaw has kidnapped a mafia family Frank has befriended and hears that Frank is coming for the hostages, he orders his men to kill them because he knows that Frank can't win if he can't save his friends.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: His scars are about as evil as you can get, horribly disfiguring his face.
- Informed Deformity: He looked 99% fine in the John Ostrander series, where he was depicted as having a couple of extra lines (and this was the 1990s, when that was in vogue) on an otherwise entirely normal face. Averted in both earlier and later depictions, where he is seriously mangled.
- In-Series Nickname: Before his run-in with Frank, he was known as Billy "the Beaut".
- Joker Immunity: Jigsaw even lampshades this, and the Punisher justifies letting him live since Jigsaw is more of a danger to his fellow criminals than innocents.
- Mad Eye: The reconstruction of his face left his left eye larger in appearance.
- Man in White: Favors white suits, and a color-inverted Punisher costume much of the time.
- Nightmare Face: He's been mutilated to a grotesque degree, to the point that his surgeons were forced to reconstruct his features from scratch.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: When he heard that Castle had been fried in an electric chair, he started killing those responsible while ranting about how inappropriate it was that he didn't get to kill him.
- Power Armor: His first appearance had him wearing an exoskeleton said to increase his strength. The 2005 video game also had him using stolen IronTech armor to fight Frank.
- Professional Killer: Was an assassin for the Maggia before reaching his current station in life.
- Rogues-Gallery Transplant: Like the Punisher, he was an antagonist in The Amazing Spider-Man, although he was introduced with his grudge against Frank already established. When Frank got his own book, Billy's villainy was taken there. Distance did not make the heart grow fonder◊.
- Supervillain: One of the few in Punisher's limited rogues gallery. He's a classic, Batman-style freak, with no actual powers, a grotesque physical deformity, and a seeming inability to be put down for good.
- Took a Level in Badass: Has gone from a failed assassin to one of the few criminals who can match the Punisher's combat skills.
- Unknown Rival: Frank only sees him as just a mid-level Mafiosi. In fact, he doesn't even remember their initial meeting.
- Useless Accessory: He had some kind of neck cast/brace in his early appearances. One would assume that it was part of the strength-enhancing exoskeleton he wore under his clothes, though him being allowed to keep it in prison casts doubt on that theory.
AKA: Lieutenant Burt Kenyon
Debut: Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-Man #4 (1977)A Marine in Vietnam, where he saved the life of Frank Castle, Burt Kenyon became a costumed assassin for the underworld after the war, bringing him into conflict with Spider-Man and the Punisher.
- Badass Bandolier: Two.
- The Cameo: Appears in a flashback in Punisher: Return to Big Nothing.
- Cool Bike: A jet-powered motorcycle.
- Cool Plane: His base of operations is a jet.
- Disney Villain Death: Fell off the Statue of Liberty.
- Dissonant Serenity: When he gunned down a group of enemy soldiers which had surrounded Frank in Vietnam.
- Evil Versus Evil: In his first appearance, he is hired by a mobster with a grudge against the Vulture.
- Face–Heel Turn: A soldier turned contract killer.
- Human Shield: Enjoyed making one out of J. Jonah Jameson.
- The Mentally Ill: Section 8'ed, meaning he was deemed mentally unfit for military service.
- Monumental Battle: His final battle with Spidey and the Punisher occurs on top of the Statue of Liberty.
- Jack the Ripoff: An unnamed criminal became the third Hitman after buying the name and gear from the Hobgoblin.
- Pet the Dog: The Punisher owed his life to the Hitman. While dangling from the Statue of Liberty, the Hitman informs Frank that he owes him a life, not his life, and tells him to save Spider-Man and J. Jonah Jameson instead.
- Professional Killer: Hence the name.
- Rogues-Gallery Transplant: Introduced as a new Spider-Man villain, he was given ties to the Punisher in his second appearance.
- Rooftop Confrontation: With Spider-Man and the Punisher, on top of The Daily Bugle.
- Tracking Device: Employed these against Spider-Man and the Vulture.
- Walking Arsenal: He whips out a lot of gadgets and weapons.
AKA: Samuel Smith
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 2, #4 (1987)Sam Smith was the leader of a would-be suicide cult called Church of the Saved, whose zealousness was stopped by the Punisher. He struck a deal with Satan note , and returned later with a plan to sterilize the American populace.
Punisher: Oh yeah. The Rev. A heavyweight—sending off vibes like crazy. Crazy vibes. Like a psycho, con and holy man all mixed into one.
- Alliterative Name: Just like his real life counterpart.
- Big Bad: Of two separate storylines.
- Dark Messiah: Fashions himself as a savior of his people, while being completely insane.
- Good Powers, Bad People: He is a crazy cult leader who has Healing Hands, which he notably uses to resurrect Jigsaw when he was working for him.
- Hollywood Satanism: After his cult fell apart, he became a worshipper of Satan.
- No Celebrities Were Harmed: Of Jim Jones, the leader of People's Temple cult whose base of operations was also in South America.
- Sinister Minister: They don't call him "The Rev" for nothing.
AKA: Rich von Burian
Debut: The Punisher War Journal #4 (1989)Von Burian was part of Frank's military unit in The Vietnam War. After the conflict, he was hired by the DEA for illegal drug operations. He later became a mercenary whose brand of work made him a target to the Punisher.
"I know that slippery *#%&# as well as I know myself. I know how he feels - what he thinks. That makes him predictable to me. I'm ready to nail his hide."
- Adaptation Name Change: He was likely the basis for Gosnell from Season Two of Daredevil.
- Cold Sniper: As his mercenary-name suggests, he is quite handy with the sniper rifle.
- Good Scars, Evil Scars: Has some serious facial scarring in his last appearance, even missing his lips.
- Hired Guns: He's loyal to anyone who pays him enough.
- Knife Nut: He uses a triangular punch-knife as a melee weapon.
- The Only One Allowed to Defeat You: He feels that the Punisher owes him big time, and is not happy when the "honor" of killing him is given to someone else.
- The Von Trope Family: And definitely part of the evil side of the trope.
AKA: Jaime Ortiz
Debut: The Punisher War Journal #8 (1989)Damage was a gang member who was mangled by the Punisher's Battle Van's defense-mechanisms. In an act of Cruel Mercy, Frank decided to let him continue to live in agony, and dropped his crushed body off at a nearby hospital. He was then recruited by a project of the Kingpin's that rebuilt him into a killing machine.
"Geez! That would've hurt if I was still all flesh and blood. Now I'll just have to order a spare from the shop!"
- Ax-Crazy: He's introduced frenziedly machine-gunning down a defiant shopkeeper in the streets in broad daylight, not noticing or simply not caring that a woman and her baby are in the way.
- Badass Moustache: His former gang didn't allow its members to have beards or moustaches, but he was deemed tough enough to be an exception.
- Cutscene Boss: He's the owner of the crack house that makes up the tutorial level of the 2005 game. The confrontation with him at the end of the stage consists of an interrogation mini-game that ends with the Punisher throwing him off of a multi-story ledge and into the path of a car.
- Evil Knockoff: He is turned into a duplicate of the Punisher so that Frank can be framed for killing innocents.
- Fire-Breathing Weapon: One of his weapons is a flamethrower.
- Gang Bangers: Former member of the Bunsen Burners.
- Pet the Dog: A thoroughly unpleasant individual, when he's first testing his new abilities, he's seemingly attacked by the Punisher, who he kills. Afterwards, the Kingpin's assistant informs him that it wasn't the real Punisher, but a disobedient employee of the Kingpin's who was told he'd be forgiven if he could beat Damage, or his family would be compensated as long as he put up a good fight. When she asks Damage if he thinks he put up a good fight, he says "He was pitiful—but he tried. What the hell!"
- The Power of Hate: He would have departed from life when he was comatose if it wasn't for the Kingpin's lackey questioning him about the person he hated the most.
- Shock and Awe: He can use his cybernetic features to generate electricity.Damage: You look tired... no energy left? I can fix that! *TZZZAPP*
- Shoulder Cannon: It's a minigun.
- We Can Rebuild Him: He was rebuilt into a Cyborg with the Kingpin's money and Reaver technology, with a variety of tricks up his sleeve. After his defeat at the hands of the Punisher and Wolverine, it is suggested that he can be rebuilt again, if he ever was.
AKA: Muzzafar Lambert
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 2, #22 (1989)A mercenary and terrorist-for-hire of Middle Eastern extraction, Muzaffar Lambert, alias Saracen, brooked no interference with his operations. When Frank Castle destroyed one of his missions, Saracen took it personally, kicking off a rivalry that would result in the deaths of Castle's only remaining relatives, and Lambert himself.
"You're an interesting man... life will be duller without you."
- Badass Moustache: Saracen was an evil, evil guy, but there was no denying that both he and his moustache were very badass.
- Badass Normal: Like most of Castle's enemies, Saracen had no superhuman powers. He earns points, however, for being one of the most wanted terrorists in the world, in a 'verse where a sizable portion of the population can shoot lasers out of their orifices and throw cars around like dolls.
- Characterization Marches On: In his two-part debut he spoke slightly broken English, and displayed none of the traits he would later possess. Adding to the oddity is the fact that neither he nor the Punisher bring up their previous encounter when they meet face to face again in The Sicilian Saga.
- Even Evil Has Standards: He kills without remorse, but he refuses to be unfaithful to his wife.
- Good Counterpart: His equivalent on Earth-1009 is a hero, and a member of the Royal Avengers.
- Good Hair, Evil Hair: Has a classically evil moustache.
- Greed: His primary motivation.
- Happily Married: Apparently, given his refusal to betray her.
- Highly Visible Ninja: Highly visible assassin anyway. Saracen's purple and red costumes are pretty obvious.
- Hired Guns: Lambert has no particular allegiances, save to his money.
- It's Personal: He kills the Punisher's aunt and uncle, Frank's last remaining family members.
- Killed Off for Real: The Punisher hacked him to bits in a Sword Fight.
- Master Swordsman: Saracen was very proficient with his scimitar.
- The Mole: Castle first met Saracen when they were both infiltrating a so-called ninja school. They allied at the time, with neither aware of the other's real goals or reasons for being there.
- Only in It for the Money: Saracen was loyal only to his paycheck.
- Professional Killer: As a terrorist-for-hire, assassination is certainly within his purview.
- Recurring Character: Made nine appearances, which for a Punisher villain is pretty good.
- Sinister Scimitar: As part of his stereotypically Arab persona.
- Sleeves Are for Wimps: As seen in the picture, Saracen's uniform is void of sleeves.
- Terrorist Without A Cause: A terrorist-for-hire to be exact, with his only cause being enriching himself.
- You Killed My Father: You killed my aunt and uncle, actually. There's a reason Castle wanted this guy dead.
Colonel De Sade
Debut: The Punisher Summer Special #1 (1991)A sadistic former interrogator for "the company" during The Vietnam War, De Sade later caught the Punisher's eye when he went into bank robbing business and, after their first confrontation, directing snuff movies.
"The fact I derive pleasure from cruelty doesn't make me feel guilty, Frank... guilt is ridiculous. There is no "good" or "bad". There is only pleasure and pain... with no heaven or hell at the end of it!"
- Combat Sadomasochist: His weapons put more emphasis on causing pain (i.e. a bazooka that shoots barbed wire) than permanently neutralizing his targets. He also enjoys being in the receiving end of Punisher's hurting during their confrontations.De Sade: Oh this is beautiful Punisher... so sadistic!
- Shout-Out: He is obviously nicknamed after Marquis de Sade, whose controversial literary works inspired the use of the term "sadism".
- Torture Technician: His job in the Vietnam conflict was to torture locals for answers.
- Whip It Good: He dual wields two whips in his second and final appearance.
AKA: Salvatore "Sal" Carbone
Debut: The Punisher War Zone #1 (1992)Sal was the younger brother of mob boss Julius Carbone, who was nearly killed when Frank (who was infiltrating the Carbone organization as Johnny Tower) chased him into a frozen lake. He barely survived, but now shows no reaction to pain, and has no memory beyond knowing who tried to kill him.
"Cannot rest until the stone-face man dies. Cannot rest until I stand over him. Until I see him breathe his last breath."
- Dull Eyes of Unhappiness: Develops these when he turns into what can be described as a walking corpse.
- Feel No Pain: Sal doesn't register any pain, no matter how often he's shot or hit.
- The Gunslinger: His last appearance shows him easily wielding dual assault rifles.
- Identity Amnesia: He doesn't (initially) know who he is, but he knows whom he's out to get.
- Implacable Man: After his dip in the lake, Thorn would push through bullets, shark-infested waters, and even more bullets to get his revenge.
- Line-of-Sight Name: When a trucker who is giving him a lift asks about his name, he gives out "Thorn", a word which he saw on a passing road sign.
- Miles to Go Before I Sleep: Thorn refuses to sleep while preying on his targets. This extends to refusing to die from his wounds and exhaustion.Thorn: I was killed so long ago. But I cannot rest. Not until I have destroyed those who destroyed me.
- The Quiet One: Speaks only when he has to, the rest is left to Inner Monologue.
- Revenge Before Reason: He only wants to take revenge on those who left him for dead, nothing else.
- The Stoic: His near-death experience left him devoid of any emotion.
- That Man Is Dead: Even when he learns about his past, he rejects it and continues his quest.Thorn: Name is Thorn now. Not Sal. Thorn.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: After his last encounter with the Punisher, he lands on a moving vehicle which takes him into Newark. Presumably, he is still there.
Debut: The Punisher War Zone #2 (1992)Rosalie was the spoiled daughter of Julius Carbone, who had a fling with Frank during his infiltration of her organization. After the death of her father, she swore revenge on the Punisher due to his part in knocking the Carbone family from top of the food chain.
"You stupid #$%@! Stop #$%@ing around and come kill this #$%@!!"
- Arranged Marriage: She was arranged to marry an Italian Mafioso's son, but the massacre at the Island of the Sleeping Sharks put a stop to that.
- Daddy's Little Villain: Even though she was just a pawn for her father, she still wants to avenge him.
- Genre Savvy: Since she has personal experience with Punisher, she is smart enough not to take part in the skyscraper trap in Suicide Run.
- The Informant: Frank, as Johnny Tower, used their relationship to get information out of her family's businesses.
- Killed Off for Real: Since Frank sometimes has an aversion to killing women, it took a while before she met her end at the hands of Leslie Geraci.
- Mafia Princess: Was one before Punisher became part of her life.
- Ms. Fanservice: A lot of her appearances had her bathing or in a bikini.
AKA: Roussel Dupont
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 2, #65 (1992)A former member of the French Foreign Legion turned mercenary-for-hire, with a chain-gun in place of his right arm.
"Would you look at this. I have seen some terrible things in my day, but this... this is the work of a true master!"
- Arm Cannon: What his chain-gun arm basically is. It can also shoot grenades.
- Badass Beard: It started out big and bushy, but he apparently took to better grooming after "Suicide Run".
- The Bus Came Back: After an absence of over a decade following the "Eurohit" reunion story in The Punisher Annual #7, he reappeared in Fear Itself: Black Widow, and Captain America and Iron Man.
- Cyborg: The most obvious indication of his status as one being his Arm Cannon.
- Gatling Good: His right arm was replaced with a chain-gun.
- Hired Guns: He'll work for whoever is willing to pay him, including the French government, which reluctantly brought him on to help patrol France's border during Civil War.
- Made of Iron: During the Suicide Run arc, Rapido was shot, then blown up when Frank detonated the bombs he had placed at the base of Manhattan Tower, where a cadre of criminals had gathered to trap him. Rapido survived this.
- More Dakka: If having a minigun/grenade launcher for an arm wasn't enough, it was later upgraded by A.I.M. to fire lasers.
Debut: The Punisher War Zone #8 (1992)Roc was one of the six mercenaries hired by Rosalie Carbone to kill the Punisher after he offed her father, and the only one to survive to challenge him for the second time.
"I'm gonna kill you, Castle. With my bare hands— like I always kill."
- Born in the Wrong Century: As he's beating the Punisher up, he claims that he should have been a gladiator in the Roman colisseum.
- The Brute: He's the muscle among the killers hired by Rosalie Carbone, specializing in close combat with his strength and size.
- Feel No Pain: He was born with dead nerve endings, making him unable to register any pain inflicted upon him.
- Hired Guns: He's a mercenary who prefers to kill with his bare hands.
- Made of Iron: First of all he survived being shot in the head, and during his final fight against Punisher, he keeps on going even after his neck is snapped and has his head is twisted sideways.
- No Kill Like Overkill: Punisher manages to defeat him by ripping out his throat, but to make sure he stays dead, he puts Roc's body on a barge, fills it with plastic explosives and blows him up.
- Spanner in the Works: Before attacking Punisher again directly, he follows him and keeps calling cops to the places he's about to hit to mess with his war.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 2 #71 (1992)Recoil was an enforcer working for a drug pusher calling himself The Master of Crack (MC for short), who was fond of cartoons.
"It's wabbit, duck and Punisher season."
- The Dragon: For his boss MC.
- Horned Hairdo: His hair from the sides of his head stands up, giving this impression.
- Perpetual Smiler: He's constantly smiling through carnage and destruction. He stops doing it when he completely loses it while trying to kill the Punisher.
- Sinister Shades: He wears a pair of round specs.
- Spikes of Villainy: He wears a longcoat that has spiked shoulderpads.
- Villainous Breakdown: He treats his encounters with the Punisher as a game until he ends up taking a faceful of his employer's product by force and goes completely out of his mind.
AKA: Edmondo Paina
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 2, #85 (1993)A demented psycho who was contracted to deal with The Punisher. After Castle humiliated him, Pain forced his way into another group that he knew The Punisher was targeting, in order that he might gain his revenge.
"You don't know who I am, do you? They call me Mondo Pain. I like to think there's a reason for that. Go ahead. Pick it up. Of course, if you shoot and miss... well... I'd barely be able to contain my rage. I might hurt you—without thinking about it—and I much prefer to think about it..."
- Combat Sadomasochist: Getting hurt just gets him in the mood for more.
- Foolish Sibling, Responsible Sibling: While laying low, the Punisher had the misfortune of running into Mondo's sister, Viva, who was also an assassin, albeit a far more professional one.Viva: There's no price for him! He's nobody! When someone pays us to kill him, then we kill him.Goose: Okay. Yeah, okay. You're right, but your brother would've done him.Viva: And that's why my brother's a--
- Names to Run Away from Really Fast: If the info boxes are to be believed, Pain is his actual surname.
- Nightmare Face: He likes to psyche out his opponents by displaying a rictus grin, which coupled with his scarred face is enough to give them a pause. Except for the Punisher, who has seen worse with the likes of Jigsaw and proceeds to simply shoot Mondo.
- Psycho for Hire: And sometimes he won't even bother to wait for that pesky "hiring" part, he just walks up to someone and forces himself into their organization.
Debut: Marvel Super-Action #1 (1976, as Frank Costa); The Punisher Vol. 4, #1 (1998, as Olivier)The Prince of the Archangels, Olivier sided with Lucifer in his rebellion against God, and as such was cast down to the netherworld, where he became a Hell-lord. The other devils, disapproving of Olivier's ambitions and methods, temporarily banded together to banish him to Earth, where he was trapped in the body of the stillborn Frank Costa. After committing murder, Olivier's memories of his previous life returned, and he subsequently used his powers to become the head of the Costa branch of the Maggia, and to manipulate a young Frank Castle into becoming the Punisher as apart of a complex plan that would see Olivier very nearly conquering both Earth and Hell.
"The others... the big guys... the devils, they thought I got a little too big for my britches. So they threw me out. Trapped me in a stillborn baby, purged of my memory of Hell, and my ambition... they thought. Mephisto. Satannish. Lucifer. Satan. Murray. I'll bet they thought that was really funny. They didn't count on me being born into a mob family. They didn't count on me killing. They didn't count on the blood giving me back my memory. If I was going to go back, I needed an edge. I needed power. An engine of death and sacrifice. I made you that engine, and all it cost was your family's blood."
- Big Bad: Of The Punisher: Purgatory miniseries.
- The Cameo: His only appearance subsequent to Purgatory was as an attendee to the Devil's Advocacy during Fear Itself, though he and a bunch of other high-level demons were apparently working behind the scenes in the Nightcrawler storyline "The Devil Inside".
- Canon Welding: It's not too difficult to fit together Purgatory and Born from the MAX series.
- Greater Scope Villain: For the franchise in general, being the one who created the Punisher. Khonshu implies that the two are still connected, in spite of their attempts to sever ties in Purgatory.
Debut: Wolverine/Punisher: Revelation #1 (1999)The second major threat during the Punisher's "angelic" phase, Revelation was a Morlocknote , who was put into cryogenic sleep some time ago due to her mutant power that slowly caused everyone close to her to die. After she is accidentally woken up, she starts making her way to the surface without realizing that her mutant power is still causing people to get sick.
"I'll reach paradise. Somehow. And then I can see my parents again, in Heaven. I can finally tell them I'm sorry."
- Big Bad: Of Wolverine/Punisher: Revelation crossover miniseries, though not out of malice.
- Obliviously Evil: Due to her Christian upbringing, she started to hallucinate her time being cryogenically frozen as being in Hell. Once she is freed, the hallucinations continue and she sees the underground surroundings around her as being Hell as well, and she thinks that her journey to surface is one to Heaven. Because of that, she also sees any living creature in her way as a demon trying to stop her.
- Typhoid Mary: After being woken up from her cryogenical sleep, she starts making her way up to "Heaven" (actually the regular surface) through "Hell" (the underground tunnels), without realizing that the death field around her is still hurting living beings.
AKA: Isabella Carmela Magdalena Gnucci
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 5, #4 (2000)The cantankerous head of the Gnucci crime family, which rivaled the Maggia, Ma and her organization became the Punisher's primary targets when he returned to combating mundane crime following the events of Purgatory and Revelation. After eliminating her three sons and her brother, the Punisher sicced a sleuth of zoo polar bears on Ma, but she survived (sans her limbs and scalp) and pooled all of her resources into taking down Castle.
"You scum! You vicious, evil scum! You're no better than I am, Punisher! You think you're better, you think you're on the side of justice, but you're wrong! You're a serial killer, Punisher! You're insane! It's mass murder, whatever you want to call it! It's genocide! What'll you do, keep going 'til we're all dead? Will that make you happy, you sick, twisted creep?! You should put a bullet in your own head, Punisher! That's the only way you'll get any peace! And you know, it too! You're a dead man walking, Punisher! You are damned!"
- Back from the Dead: Years after her fiery death at the hands of the Punisher, Ma supposedly came back from the dead seeking revenge, but this turned out to merely be an elaborate hoax orchestrated by the second Elite.
- Bad Boss: She's pretty nasty to her employees. After her cousin offends her by asking how she's doing after she loses her limbs. She orders one of her henchmen to shoot him. When he refuses, she tells another mook to shoot them both. When he refuses, she finally gets another goon to kill all three of them. She also makes of her men throw up up after he sees her without her wig, purely for the fun of it.
- Determinator: She vows that no matter how long it takes or how much money it costs, one day she'll walk again. That picture you see is of her throwing herself out of her burning house, and then trying to attack Frank by biting his ankle.
- Evil Cripple: Lost all of her limbs to polar bears, but that didn't stop her from running her organization.
- Evil Matriarch: Being an old woman didn't stop her from becoming an utterly ruthless crime boss.
- On One Condition: She left everything to her nephew, but a clause in her will meant that he could only claim the inheritance in the event of the Punisher's death. Deadpool gets wind of this, and convinces the nephew to hire him to rub out Frank. Hilarity predictably ensues.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 5, #8 (2000)A hulking giant from Smolensk with clear, if undisclosed, superhuman powers, the relentlessly cheerful Russian exists to mock Frank Castle's ability to kill people. Initially hired by Ma Gnucci, the Russian has clashed with the Punisher on several occasions, and despite seemingly dying a number of times, always comes back.
"Dosvidanja, Big Boy! The Russian really has to hand it to you!!"
- Adorkable: A rare evil example. Affectionate towards his allies/friends, wants to get "lots of Levis and CD's" with a million dollar reward, and is openly a fan of GOOD superheroes (Mighty Thor Good Communist, with that Big Hammer of his!).
- Affably Evil: Murderous, violent and psychopathic. He is, nonetheless, incredibly friendly to his enemies, actively complimenting and joking with them mid-fight.
- Ascended Fanboy: He is a huge fan of the Fantastic Four, the X-Men, and Spider-Man, and is the president of his local chapter of the Daredevil: Man Without Fear Fan Club.
- Blood Knight: He went to Afghanistan for a vacation and is described as taking jobs for money or for fun.
- Boisterous Bruiser
- The Brute
- Came Back Wrong: The resurrection process gave him ridiculously huge breasts, but he's the only one not to care. In fact, he likes them.
- Dirty Commies: Expresses some Communist sentiments, though he's also a big fan of capitalism and consumer society.
- Dumb Muscle
- Foil: The always happy Russian makes for an effective comedic foil to the grim and serious Punisher.
- Go Out with a Smile: Was last scene hanging onto an ICBM, laughing and waving as it detonated.
- Husky Russkie: Eight feet tall, five hundred pounds, and hailing from Smolensk, Russia.
- Immune to Bullets: Doesn't react at all when shot.
- Joker Immunity: He's been stabbed, shot, beaten, burned, decapitated, and nuked. Only the last one seems to have taken, and even that may be temporary.
- Kick the Dog: Upon noticing the Punisher's neighbors, he exclaims, "Ah! These are your little friends, yes? When the Russian gets through with you, imagine the terrible things that will happen to them!"
- Made of Iron: May actually stray into Made Of Titanium territory, if it is a superpower.
- Nuke 'em: His most recent exit was at the hands of an atomic missile.
- Off with His Head!: How he died the first time.
- Only Known by Their Nickname: He's never called anything other than "The Russian", and he always refers to himself as such.
- Super Strength: The Russian's strength crosses into the metahuman. He can punch through walls, ripped a toilet out of the floor and swung it like a club, and once crushed a man while trying to hug him.
- Supervillain: Possess superhuman strength and durability.
- There's No Kill Like Overkill: It took being chained to a dropped atomic bomb to kill him for good. Maybe.
Debut: The Punisher vol. 6 #9 (2002)An oddball criminal mastermind who has a tendency of coming up with various bizarre evil plans against the populace of New York before even finishing the previous one. He gets Punisher's attention when he is amidst of making taxicab drivers wage a war against each other.
"I shall embark upon nothing less than a thorough cleansing... an organized, self-escalating campaign... a war of the taxicabs! Drivers killing drivers! Passengers in the crossfire! Big weapons giving way to bigger! Body counts climbing! Valor! Cowardice! Women in mourning! Orphans in the street! And songs! Great songs!"
- Cloud Cuckoolander: He insists on being nude while scheming with his cohorts. He also habitually abandons said schemes when he comes up with a crazier one.
- Expy: His face is similar to Goldfinger from the James Bond movie of the same name. To hammer this in, he even has a butler who serves mint juleps and a mook refers to him as a person "who thinks he's Goldfinger".
- Fat Bastard: He's very fat, and unfortunately insists upon being in little clothing as possible most of the time.
- Offscreen Villain Dark Matter: He clearly has great amounts of wealth to sink into pointless schemes, but it is never revealed where it comes from.
Man Down Below
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 6, #24 (2003)An unnamed man who had homeless people bring him corpses so that he could hide under them.
"You bring me people like you and I give you lots of money. And then you can buy stuff, like clothes to wear and food to eat. Then the strong ones can stay with you... and the weak ones can stay with me...."
- Freudian Excuse: Because he was trapped for days under his grossly overweight mother's corpse when she died from a heart attack as a child, he developed a fixation of lying under corpses so that he can be reminded of her.
- King of the Homeless: By paying the homeless of New York, he orders them around to kill and collect the weaker members among themselves to provide corpses to the pile he likes to be under of. He is discovered when one of them attacks a social worker who is then rescued by the Punisher, who then finds about his operation.
- Momma's Boy: He was heavily doted by his mother as a child, and after her death, he started become sickly depended to their last moments together.
- No Name Given: He and his mother are never named.
- Offscreen Villain Dark Matter: No real explanation is given for where he's getting the resources (especially the money) that he uses to keep his minions content, especially since it's insinuated that he spends all of his time lounging around in his mountain of festering carcasses.
- Psychopathic Manchild: It's noted that he talks and sounds like "a little boy or something".
AKA: Tanya Adrian
Debut: Punisher War Journal Vol. 2, #20 (2008)An assassin for the ninja organization The Hand.
"Stubborn little soul. You hold too tightly—oblivious to the inevitable conclusion. You can't run from a telepath, Frank. You shouldn't run at all. Death is but the first step and once through you will be more powerful than you can imagine. You needn't be afraid. I'm going to show you, Frank. Show you how glorious the release will be. It's so easy, Frank. Swimming in the Land of the Dead will liberate you of all you were or ever will be. Return to me. Accept me as your Jonin. You will rise from the darkness. You will carry my mark and serve the holy cause of the Hand."
- Another Man's Terror: She has Psychic Powers that allow her to project a dying person's thoughts into someone else's mind. She uses this to give herself an upper hand in combat.
- Fangs Are Evil: Her teeth are all razor sharp.
- Dead Person Impersonation: The In the Blood miniseries has her pretending to be Frank's wife, whom he had torched some time ago when she was brough back from the dead by The Hood, to mess with him psychologically.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 8, #12 (2010)A monster hunter who was the Punisher's first major villain during his days as Franken-Castle.
"His brutal kind massacred my family. So I hunted and killed his. Though gruesome, our families died for a reason: To set us on our crusades. With their lives torn away—we are left empty. And only a man who is wholly vacant can effectively wage war."
- The Call Knows Where You Live: Despite his genius in engineeering, he just wanted to live happily with his family doing common work. Then he was forced to kill werewolves that were attacking his village, including his now-transformed family. After being recruited by Ulysses Bloodstone, he dedicated his craft to coming up with effective ways to slay monsters.
- Evil Counterpart: Much like the then-current incarnation of Frank, he is an undead guy who is kept alive artificially. However, he is evil because he wants kill 'all monsters, while Frank seeks to protect them.Henry: Figures since his family was killed by monsters he's within his rights to kill whoever he sees as a... um... anyway...
- Eyepatch of Power: He lost his right eye during his days with Ulysses Bloodstone, and covered it with an eyepatch.
- Hoist by His Own Petard: Happened to him twofold when he first donned his trademark battle-suit; first he was fried by the suit's internal workings when Dracula cut off the tubes that protected him from that, and then he was thrown into the dimension that he had intended to use to get rid of unkillable monsters.
- Remember the New Guy: His former partner Ulysses Bloodstone has appeared in Marvel titles since the seventies; Hellsgaard's contributions to his work weren't mentioned until his appearance in The Punisher.
- Van Helsing Hate Crimes: He hunts all monsters, even the sapient and docile ones that are no danger to anyone. Henry also mentions that he's begun targeting mutants and baseline humans who just happen to be physically abnormal in some way.
Doctor Stephanie Gerard
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 9, #2 (2011)A former AIM scientist, Stephanie Gerard left her parent organization to set up a new criminal organization, the Exchange. Wearing civilian clothes instead of spandex, she and her allies recruit former AIM and Hydra personnel in the interests of creating a new force in the underworld.
"If you want attention, feel free to dust off your costumes and go back to being beaten bloody by the likes of the Avengers. I'm sure A.I.M. or Hydra or even Hive will be glad to have you back. They're always looking for fresh cannon fodder. Meeting is adjourned. Happy Thanksgiving."
- Anti-Villain: At least when compared to most of the Punisher's other foes. Stephanie has no interest in hurting innocent people (executing the sole surviving one of her thugs who shot up Rachel's wedding), tries to run her organization with a minimum of casualties, and in general tries to get things accomplished with a minimum of bloodshed and fuss.
- Big Bad: Of Greg Rucka's sixteen issue run.
- The Chessmaster
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: Is friends with Chris Poulsen, and may be starting to return his crush by the end.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Reads the henchmen who shot up Rachel Cole-Alves' wedding the riot act before executing him for his sloppiness.
- Evil Genius
- Four Eyes, Zero Soul
- Hot Scientist: Just look at her picture.
- Mad Scientist: She used to be.
- Morally Ambiguous Doctorate: She's "Doctor" Gerard, used to work for AIM, and is now going into organized crime.
- Non-Action Big Bad: Stephanie's not a fighter, which is why she keeps Poulsen on the payroll.
- Pragmatic Villainy: Gerard wants to get things done as efficiently as possible, with no unnecessary violence. The reason she left AIM was because she felt that status as borderline Card Carrying Villains was preventing them from accomplishing anything.
- Spanner in the Works: Despite all her plans, one group of trigger happy Henchmen leads to the Punisher and Cole-Alves gunning for her.
- Underestimating Badassery: Gerard was so confident of her technology and superior planning, she let Cole-Alves (posing as a weapons dealer) right into her office despite knowing who she was and who she was working with. She even shoots down Poulsen's warnings and orders him to stay in his office while she decides to gloat at Cole-Alves. This leads to her getting garroted.
- Villainous Friendship: Type I with Chris Poulsen.
Christian "Chris" Poulsen
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 9, #2 (2011)A one-time operative for SHIELD, Chris Poulsen is Stephanie Gerard's partner, confidante, and muscle. He handles the wet work for the Exchange, and has a massive crush on Stephanie.
"I know you saw that, Frank... you and your girlfriend, you saw that and you couldn't do anything about it. I called the police, you know, right after you killed Stephanie... called the N.Y.P.D. and told them you were in the building, that you were murdering all these people... they're coming in any second, now, coming with gas and guns to put you down like the rabid dog you are... you killed her, Frank. She never looked at me until twice today, but I loved her, and you killed her... and when you did that, you killed me, too. So we'll all die together. You and me and the missus... all us like the bastards we are... like we deserve..."
- Antivillain: There was nothing particularly nasty about Poulsen, at least prior to his Villainous Breakdown.
- Axe Crazy: By the end.
- Badass: Takes on Castle, Cole-Alves, and half the police force during his last appearance.
- The Bad Guy Wins: Chris' killing spree in issue fifteen gets him everything he wanted, leaving the Punisher and Cole-Alves on the run from the police, their relationship with law enforcement apparently ruined.
- Berserk Button: Hurting Stephanie. When Alves kills her, Chris goes on a rampage that results in a double-digit body count.
- Bodyguard Crush: On Stephanie
- The Coats Are Off: Ditches his Badass Longcoat and his suit during his last battle with Castle and Cole-Alves.
- Cop Killer: Guns down two police officers, and, as a bonus, sets up the events that result in Rachel Cole-Alves killing Detective Walter Bolt.
- The Dragon: To Stephanie, whom he allows to take the lead in most of their operations, while serving as her muscle.
- Even Evil Has Loved Ones: His crush on Gerard.
- Frame-Up: Calls the police, claims Castle and Cole-Alves are attacking his office building, then proceeds to slaughter them all himself. The resulting shootout leaves sixteen dead, including Poulsen and three cops, and sees Castle and Cole-Alves hunted for murder (though Cole-Alves really did kill Detective Walter Bolt).
- Hand Cannon: His modified nine millimeter, with which he's able to hit police officers on the street from several stories up in an office building.
- Handicapped Badass: He's walking with a leg brace during his final confrontation with Castle and Cole-Alves, courtesy of injures from their first clash, and the subsequent torture he endured at the hands of Black Spectre. It doesn't slow him down much.
- Roaring Rampage of Revenge: Goes on a killing spree after Dr. Gerard is killed, ending with his own death.
- Sanity Slippage: After Stephanie Gerard's death.
- Suicide by Cop: Suicide by Frank Castle. With Stephanie dead, Chris doesn't have much to live for.
- Taking You with Me: The purpose of his final rampage. He rants to The Punisher that he, Frank, and Cole-Alves are "going to die together. Like the bastards we are."
- Unstoppable Rage: When Gerard dies, he flips out and goes on a rampage. The only thing ceasing it being his death.
- Villainous Breakdown: Undergoes a massive one when Stephanie dies.
- Villainous Friendship: Type I with Stephanie Gerard.
- We Have Reserves: Baits a trap for Castle with The Exchange's less competent henchmen.
AKA: James "Jimmy" Natale
Debut: The Amazing Spider-Man #592 (2009)Originally a Spider-Man villain, the fourth Vulture, Jimmy Natale, was a freak science experiment gone horribly, horribly wrong. Contracted by The Exchange to put Frank Castle out of their misery, Jimmy was killed in aerial combat with The Punisher above the streets of New York.
- Ax-Crazy: He doesn't have much in terms of sanity, if at all.
- Absurdly Sharp Claws: To the point of punching through Kevlar.
- Beast Man: Incredibly bestial, and barely capable of speech.
- Character Death: Castle inflicted a mortal wound on him with his knife, which caused him to plummet to the streets and his untimely death.
- Eye Scream: Deals a nasty injury to one of Frank's eyes, which remains bandaged for the remainder of the arc.
- Flight: Thanks to his wings.
- Hired Guns: Worked for The Exchange as one.
- Obviously Evil: A slavering beastman dressed all in black and red and drooling acid? Pretty obviously evil.
- Psycho for Hire: A cannibalistic monster hired to take out Frank Castle.
- Rogues-Gallery Transplant: A Spider-Man villain who was hired to deal with the Punisher.
- Super Spit: Acidic spit to be precise.
- Supervillain: One of the few bonafide supervillains Castle has clashed with.
AKA: Jake Niman
Debut: Punisher: Nightmare #1 (2013)Niman was a special forces soldier whose family was gunned down in Central Park, much like with Punisher's family. As Punisher works with him to avenge them, he learns that Niman was part of a goverment project to create super soldiers, which is turning him into an unstoppable monster.
"I'm Johnny Nightmare... and everybody is my enemy."
- Big Bad: Of the Nightmare miniseries.
- Blood Knight: While he was fighting in Afghanistan, he started to enjoy fighting little too much. Scared of this development, Niman eventually got himself discharged so he wouldn't completely become a bloodthirsty monster. Unfortunately, he and his family being gunned down eventually brings this mindset back, and as he turns more monstrous both figuratively and literally, Punisher has to stop him.
- Came Back Strong: Thanks to the experiments done to him, his body can regenerate, and become physically bigger and stronger each time he comes back from death.
- Enemy Without: In Afghanistan, he developed two sides: J., a soldier who tries his best to win local populace over, and Johnny, a Sociopathic Soldier who relishes in killing the enemy, and eventually, the innocent. Jake tried to get rid of his "Johnny" side for the sake of his family, but the loss of them and the fatal wounds he received in the process eventually brought that side of him back big time, and took over him mentally.
- Gone Horribly Wrong: The people behind the super soldier project that gave Niman his regenerative powers tried to have him assassinated so he wouldn't become a hard-to-kill murder monster. The opposite happens.
- Healing Factor: He can heal back from fatal wounds, like headshots and falls from skyscrapers, and become stronger each time.
- No Kill Like Overkill: Since normal firearms are not enough to kill Nightmare permanently, Punisher uses trickery to place nine bricks of C4 on Nightmare's back, which upon exploding leave nothing left of him to regenerate from.
- Shadow Archetype: Both him and Punisher were soldiers in a war that turned them into hardened killers, but who still managed to hold on to some shred of their humanity afterwards. The deaths of their respective families however drove them over the edge, and now they both kill people, albeit for different reasons: Nightmare is a monster waging a war against everyone for its own sake while Punisher is an anti-hero vigilante who thinks himself as a monster while shooting bad guys.
- That Man Is Dead: Upon being shot in the head, the little humanity that Jake Niman had left was gone and "Johnny" took over him mentally.Nightmare: Jake and me were two guys. But Jake's dead, I'm alive.
- Vigilante Man: He joins Punisher to avenge the deaths of his family; one death and return from it later and he's an enemy to every man.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 11 #1 (2016)A Marine who served alongside Frank, Olaf now works for the Condor mercenary unit, providing security for their drug trafficking operation.
"A gun this old, seen as much action as this one, if it’s still around, there’s only one thing you know for sure: it works. So treat it with a little respect, or you might find yourself on the wrong end of it."
- Dude, Where's My Respect?: Was with Condor since they started, but he has reached the glass ceiling, as younger, more ruthless associates have eclipsed him.
- Genre Savvy: Knows Frank's tactics, always has an escape plan, and eerily capable of appealing to what little humanity Frank has left.
- Know When to Fold 'Em: After witnessing Frank singlehandedly take out two amped-up mooks, he decides to cut his losses and leave.
- Perma-Stubble: Adds to his grizzled look.
- Punch Clock Villain: Is not a particularly evil man, he's working for Condor mainly just to pay the bills.
Debut: The Punisher Vol. 11, #1 (2016)The Face is Condor's second-in-command. He is also a "grade A psycho", infamous for the Creepy Souvenir he takes from each of his kills.
"This time, Castle, I came prepared. And now, you're dead."
- Badass in a Nice Suit
- The Dragon: To Condor.
- Expy: Somewhat reminiscent of Durant from Darkman, with a few elements of the New 52 Dollmaker thrown in.
- Meaningful Name: He is introduced as The Face of his organization, and cuts the faces off of his victims.
- Red Eyes, Take Warning: When he takes the EMC drug.
- Scary Black Man: If the Trophy Room wasn't enough of an indicator, then the Slasher Smile when he's ordered to go after Frank seals the deal.
- Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: He and Olaf do not get along very well.