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Comic Book / The Punisher Presents Barracuda

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A miniseries spun-off from The Punisher MAX, written by Garth Ennis and released in 2007.

Barracuda, after being defeated by The Punisher in his introductory storyline, is planning to gather large amount of resources to take revenge on the vigilante. An opportunity to do so presents itself when he is hired by the crime boss Christopher "Big Chris" Angelone to help his son Oswald to take out a business partner who refuses to play by the rules. Instead doing what he was told, Barracuda devises a plan to take control of both Angelone's crime enterprises and the Banana Republic he's being sent in.

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This comic has examles of:

  • Alliterative Name: President Leopoldo Luna, the president of the Banana Republic that Oswald is supposed to kill to make a man out of himself for his father.
  • And Call Him "George"!: 'Cuda ends up accidentally killing Oswald by slapping him too hard on the back to congratulate him.
  • Appease the Volcano God: Mount Muerte, a volcano that President Luna takes Barracuda and Fifty to see, was used to perform human sacrifices according to him. Luna himself uses it to execute his political enemies.
  • Armored Closet Gay: President Luna really hates gays, but his wife says he can't get it up unless she dresses up as Che Guevara.
  • Artistic License – Biology: Oswald's hemophilia is taken Up to Eleven and portrayed as more ridiculously severe than even the most severe real world cases. His medication is also portrayed as pills, when actual hemophilia medication is an injection.
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  • Ass Shove: Barracuda shoves one gangster's own gun up the guy's ass.
  • Banana Republic: The fictional country of Santa Morricone fits this trope. It crosses off just about everything associated with this trope, from impoverished streets, militant dictators, and of course, tropical jungles.
  • Bigger Is Better in Bed: Wanda, being a former hardcore porn star, is rather jaded about sex, but mentions that it's been a while since she climaxed like she did after sleeping with Barracuda. Barracuda states that "it reaches places others dont".
  • Break Out the Museum Piece: Deconstructed by the Santa Morricone military, whose post-WWII American surplus M4 Sherman tanks demonstrate dubious reliability after sixty years of service, with its ammunition proving just as dangerous to the tank crews as well as their targets.
    • This is actually a minor example of Truth in Television, as surplus Sherman tanks were used in Latin American nations up to the late 1990s, with a handful still in active or reserve service among these nations today.
  • Bring My Brown Pants: A tough-talking gangsta wets his pants immediately after he turns around and finds himself face to face with Barracuda.
  • Bullying a Dragon: You'd figure that those tough talking gangsters sent by Angelone would be just a little bit nicer when addressing Mr. Barracuda. What with him being a giant 6'10 beast built like a brick shit house, but no. And 'Cuda responds to their bullish rudeness accordingly.
  • CIA Evil, FBI Good: Averted: The FBI agent providing exposition on each agency's motivations sees the CIA guys as still living in the era when they ran dictatorships, but they seem the most competent of the bunch (the NSA guy is portrayed as The Load).
  • Comicbook Fantasy Casting: Big Chris's appearance is based on Christopher Walken. The placement of his speech bubbles are even meant to emulate Walken's speaking patterns.
  • Cool Guns:
    • When all hell breaks loose 'Cuda's partner in crime "Fifty" whips out a Dragunov rifle to deal with some troublesome rebels.
    • Luna shows a fondness for the model 500 S&W revolver.
    Luna: The Five Hundred Magnum from our mutual friends at Smith and Wesson. Makes the gun of Dirty Harry look like a weasel's cock.
  • Creepy Crossdresser: Fifty, one of Barracuda's old army buddies, turns out to have become a flamboyant crossdresser since the 1980's. Whats more, he's still in the military as a general!
  • Damned by a Fool's Praise: Leopoldo Luna, a druglord/dictator who Barracuda helped put into power during the 80s, has an enormous statue of Ronald Reagan in his mansion's yard. While showing it to Barracuda, Luna mentions that everything he knows about being a head of state, he learned from Reagan.
  • Dare to Be Badass: Barracuda gives a speech of this kind to Hemo when he's in the middle of shock after finding out his father wants to kill him off. Becomes especially poignant considering it's a paraphrased speech that Barracuda's own abusive father once gave him while torturing him and why Barracuda is the monster that he is.
    Barracuda: You gotta learn, boy. I tol' you back when shit started, you gonna have to change if you wanna be a gangsta. Yo' pops out to waste my ass, an' he don't give a fuck who gets got while he doin' it. Not you. Not nobody. He one hard muthafucka, no doubt. He gotta be that way 'cause that's how the world fuckin' is, Hemo. Shit comes to shit, ain't no one gonna be there for you. Every muthafucka alone in this world — so you best be gettin' used to that, an' you best man up an' learn to be hard as the goddamn world itself. You gotta be a hardcore. Muthafuckin'. Gangsta.
  • Denser and Wackier: The miniseries is noticeably more off-kilter and way more out there than the main Punisher Max series.
  • Eye Scream: Oswald pokes out one of Flannery's eyes when the creepy old bastard tries to hold him hostage.
  • Gag Boobs: Wanda, being a former porn actress, has a comical set of fake tits. In fact, they're so much plastic that she gets a bullet right through them and doesnt even bleed from the wound.
  • Hand Cannon: President Luna brings a Smith & Wesson Model 500 with him to kill Barracuda over Mount Muerte. He gets no chance to use it, but it is later picked by Oswald so that he can blow his father away.
  • Hellish Copter: The CIA, NSA, and DEA agents decide to overfly the battle with guns blazing. Cue the Stinger missile.
  • I'm a Humanitarian: After Wanda and Barracuda, the only two surviving characters, are stranded on a rubber raft in the middle of the ocean with no supplies, Barracuda implies he's going to eat Wanda (having already done so in his first appearance).
  • Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: After being punched through a window by Barracuda, Flannery falls on the raised hand of President Luna's Ronald Reagan statue, which impales him.
  • Interservice Rivalry: The FBI, NSA, DEA and CIA are all cooperating to find Barracuda before he can restore the flow of drugs from Santa Morricone. Naturally, each agency has its own agenda and will make sure to prevent the others don't interfere with it. The senior FBI agent explains to your younger assistant why each are incompetent in their own way.
  • Irony: Leopoldo Luna is extremely homophobic, but has no clue that his latest lover Fifty is a man dressed as a woman.
  • Ironic Echo: Barracudas frequent command of "Gimme the pig." echoes Frank's Castles repeated "Give me the sixty." in Punisher:Born.
  • It Has Been an Honor: Subverted. Fifty is mortally wounded during the climax and decided to stay behind to hold off the advancing troops. He and Barracuda part with a respectful nod ("Sergeant-major." "General.", only for Barracuda to smirk like an asshole and call Fifty a "dumbass" as soon as his back is turned, showing that, true to form, he doesnt give a shit about anyone other than himself.
  • Leave No Witnesses: After realizing that the men he brutalized were actually sent by Big Chris to pick him up, Barracuda arranges them to die in a car crash to not get on Big Chris' bad side just yet. And by "arrange", we mean he just matter-of-factly pries their car off the freeway in the most casual way possible.
  • Nerd Glasses: Oswald Angelo has a very typical nerdy appearance thanks to his thick glasses that cover almost half of his face.
  • No Honor Among Thieves: The overarching theme of the series, there is no one Barracuda and his ilk wont screw over to fill their own pockets. Even your oldest friend is only kept around as long as he can be useful for something. Barracuda even tries to pass this message over to Oswald to explain why his father doesnt seem to care if he dies.
  • Older Than They Look: Would you believe that little Oswald Angelone is actually twenty years old. Even "Cuda" seems surprised by this revelation. He barely looks 13.
  • Pedophile Priest: Flannery used to be a priest, but got defrocked for being a pederast and now advises Leopaldo Luna on spiritual matters.
  • Pet the Dog: Subverted. 'Cuda seems to display a genuine fondness and concern for Oswald, the hemophiliac son of the mob boss who hires him. He nicknames the kid "hemo", enjoys talking to him and spending time with him, encourages him to be more assertive and outgoing, and does not hesitate to risk his life to save Oswald during a gunfight. However, after he accidentally kills Oswald, he seems upset...for like a second, before getting annoyed that he won't get the money.
  • Refuge in Audacity: Barracuda uses this to escape death by volcano; he and his group of eccentric mercenaries are working for Luna, a homophobic dictator who falls for 'Cuda's Cross Dresser second-in-command Fifty. Luna's sudden but inevitable betrayal lands 'Cuda and Fifty in a helicopter over a volcano with Luna about to force them to jump in at gunpoint leading 'Cuda to make fifty buy them some time...
    Barracuda: Fifty? Why'n't you show this mothafucka yo' dick?
  • Self-Made Orphan: Oswald shoots his father during the climax as revenge for not caring if he gets killed in the attempt at getting Barracuda.
  • "Shaggy Dog" Story: After all the trouble to get rid of both Luna and Big Chris, Barracuda momentarily forgets about Oswald's haemophilia and thoughtlessly slaps his back, causing him to bleed to death in seconds.
  • Shout-Out: The setting is Santa Morricone.
  • Unsettling Gender Reveal: As Luna has them both on gunpoint above a volcano, Barracuda tells Fifty to show his dick to him. Luna, who up to this moment had thought Fifty as a woman (and even had sex with him), freaks out at the sight so strongly that he leaps out from the helicopter that they are in, falling down to the lava below.
  • Villain Protagonist: Barracuda, who is still the same vile and manipulative villain like in the Punisher comic where he debuted.
  • Weaksauce Weakness: Osawald is a haemophiliac, which is presented that he'll die instantly if he gets as much as a paper cut.
  • Went to the Great X in the Sky: Barracuda asks his old army associate what might've put the local mafia family on his ass, "Outsida the same ol' lista complaints they always got". He responds with "Outsida all them guineas you sent to the great olive garden in the sky, you mean".
  • Wham Line: Leopoldo does not take Fifty's Unsettling Gender Reveal well.


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