Marvel's The Punisher – "3 AM" [Recap – S1E1]

Frank Castle, known throughout New York City as “the Punisher” after exacting revenge on those responsible for the death of his family, uncovers a larger conspiracy beyond what was done to him and his family.

In case you didn’t know about the Frank ‘The Punisher’ Castle, season one – episode one opens with Frank finishing up his murder spree of the Mexicans (long-range rifle) and the Kitchen Irish (bludgeoning).
After that, it’s six months later and Frank is wearing a beard and beating a wall to death with a sledgehammer. His coworkers think the savant with the sledgehammer is mentally handicapped or something… unfortunately, none of them guessed he might be a well-conditioned psychotic.
New on the job is Donny a young and idealistic construction worker who just wants to be loved. The rest of the crew is mainly made up of school-yard bullies who really hate Frank’s (now going by Pete Castiglione and Fran is supposed to be dead) work ethic because they really love overtime.
Donny tries to buddy up to Pete with stories about his dead parents, including a father who served in the Marines, and an ailing Grandmother who makes great sandwiches. Pete summarily shuts down Donny’s attempt to befriend him.
Emotionally needy, Donny turns to the bullies and follows them around like a lost lamb. After tricking him into buying almost $350 worth of drinks at a local bar they, for some strange reason, invite Donny to pull a heist with them. For even less clear reasons, Donny agrees to join them in robbing an underground card game run by gangsters. As expected, he fucks it up beautifully: BY DROPPING HIS WALLET—OPEN TO HIS DRIVER’S LICENSE.
Meanwhile, Castle can’t sleep because he’s haunted by recurring nightmares of that time his family was murdered in his face. He, like anyone, decides that if he can’t sleep he should go to work at 3 AM and whack at that wall he hates with that hammer he loves.
Super pissed, as expected, the bullies decide Donny needs to die… At the construction site where they all work. Strongly disagreeing with this turn of events, Donny runs for his life and then puts up the saddest of sad fights for his life. Donny gets tossed off the roof into pouring cement.
Frank feels now he should intervene and suggests the bullies turn off the cement machine. They decline.
He bludgeons everyone to death with his hammer, asks Donny about the club they robbed, tosses Donny a rope so he can save his own dumb ass. At the end of the rope is the bag of money with a note written in blood suggesting Donny, “LEAVE TOWN.”
Because no one likes loose ends, Frank goes to the club where the gangsters are planning to follow-up with their assailants, firstly the self-identified Donny Chavez. He kills them all and then twists the main guy’s arm so he shoots himself with his own gun. Ta-da: Murder-suicide!
Jon Bernthal as Pete Castiglione / Frank Castle / Punisher
Deborah Ann Woll as Karen Page (from Daredevil)
Ebon Moss-Bachrach as David Lieberman / Micro
Jaime Ray Newman as Sarah Lieberman
Ben Barnes as Billy Russo
Jason R. Moore as Curtis Hoyle (the Black Friend)
Clancy Brown as Ray Schoonover
Amber Rose Revah as Agent Dinah Madani
Michael Nathanson as Jr. Agent Sam Stein
Paul Schulze as William Rawlins
Daniel Webber as Lewis Wilson
Shohreh Aghdashloo as Farah Madani

Free Comic Book Day 2014: IMAGE Comics

Gasp! Not only will there be free comics on Free Comic Book Day but Image Comics  is using this wonderful geek holiday to allow even more newbies entry into the wonderful world of comics and stories with pictures.  Image Comics is launching $1 first edition first issues!
Comics are an investment and people want to know if there worth the price of a mediocre sandwich or nah. This way you can get a variety of stories from Sex Criminals to Lazarus to try and, maybe, like.
Check out the list of Image firsts below:

ALEX + ADA #1
A sci-fi drama set in the near future and perfect for fans of the TV show Fringe and the Spike Jonze film Her. The last thing in the world Alex wanted was an X5, the latest in realistic androids. But when Ada is dropped into his life, will Alex keep her? Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148356.
BLACK SCIENCE #1
Grant McKay, former member of The Anarchistic Order of Scientists, has finally done the impossible: he has deciphered Black Science and punched through the barriers of reality. But what lies beyond the veil is not epiphany, but chaos. Now Grant and his team are lost, living ghosts shipwrecked on an infinite ocean of alien worlds, barreling through the long-forgotten, ancient, and unimaginable dark realms. The only way is forward. The only question is how far are they willing to go, and how much can they endure, to get home again? Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148357.
DEADLY CLASS #1
Welcome to the most brutal high school on Earth, where the world’s top crime families send the next generation of assassins to be trained. Murder is an art. Killing is a craft. At King’s Dominion High School for the Deadly Arts, the dagger in your back isn’t always metaphorical, nor is your fellow classmates’ poison. Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148358.
EAST OF WEST #1
He has been called Abaddon. The Reaper. Fool’s Bane. The Grey Walker. You speak his name in hushed tones, if at all. You fear him and all he represents. He is the ultimate state of all things. He is Death. But, in the past, Death found peace. For his betrayal, the rest of the Four Horsemen snatched happiness away from him forever. Now, Death rides with Crow and Wolf in search of those who wronged him. We would tell you to pray, but it wouldn’t do any good. You have earned what is coming to you. Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148359.
LAZARUS #1
In a dystopian near-future, government is a quaint concept, resources are coveted, and possession is 100% of the law. A handful of Families rule, jealously guarding what they have and exploiting the Waste who struggle to survive in their domains. Forever Carlyle defends her family’s holdings through deception and force as their protector, their Lazarus. Shot dead defending the family home, Forever’s day goes downhill from there… Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148360.
MANIFEST DESTINY #1
In 1804, Captain Meriwether Lewis and Second Lieutenant William Clark set out on an expedition to explore the uncharted American frontier. This is the story of what they discovered lurking in the wilds… Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148361.
PRETTY DEADLY #1
Sandman meets Preacher in PRETTY DEADLY, where Death’s daughter rides the wind on a horse made of smoke and her face bears the skull marks of her father. Her tale of retribution is as beautifully lush as it is unflinchingly savage. Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148362.
SEX CRIMINALS #1
Suzie’s a normal girl with an extraordinary ability: when she has sex, she stops time. One night she meets Jon… who has the same gift. And so they do what any other sex-having, time-stopping, couple would do: they rob banks. Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148363.
VELVET #1
When the world’s best secret agent is killed, Velvet Templeton, the Personal Assistant to the Director of the Agency, is drawn off her desk and back into the field for the first time in nearly 20 years… and is immediately caught in a web of mystery, murder and high-octane action. Sexy and provocative, VELVET is a dark twist on the spy genre. Image Firsts edition is available with Diamond code FEB148364.
ZERO #1
Edward Zero is the perfect execution machine—a spy who breaks the rules to get things done. When a stolen device appears in the center of a long-running conflict, Zero comes to retrieve it. The problem is, the device is inside a living, breathing, bio-modified terrorist and there’s an entire army after it. Image Firsts edition available with Diamond code FEB148365.

 

Enhanced by Zemanta

How To: Murder

We’ve said before that you aren’t going to be able to spend the whole apocalypse hiding away in a basement. You’re going to need to get out there, seize the wastes with both grimy hands. Scavenge strange new foods, barricade a whole new part of town. But there are going to be people out there who want to stop you from doing that. They want to hurt you. So you are going to have to murder them.
Now, now. Stop shaking. Definitely don’t call the police. I’m not saying you should kill someone before society collapses into an anarchic hellhole where joy and hope are far from your grasp. Wait till after. No murder now, got it? No murder. And I’m not saying it’s a good thing to do, either.  Just that if it’s you or them, you should choose you.
First, try to seperate out your guilt. You are a good person, which is why the resistance to the whole murder thing. But this person will kill you, and probably hurt you very badly before they’re done. It’s survival, pure and simple. Forget the emotions in the midst of the act.
Second, go for their vulnerabilities. No matter how big or scary they are, all people have weaknesses, and all people can be killed. Most of the time they’ll be relying on fear to keep you in check, because they know as well as you what you can do.

Murder in the Serail
Murder in the Serail (Photo credit: Wikipedia) This racist picture shows murder

You have nothing to lose. Really, nothing. You are in horrible trouble right now. If you don’t try to kill them, they will murder you – or worse. If you do and fail, they’ll still kill you, but at least it’ll be quick. And if you try and succeed, you’re out of the situation.
Don’t forget – despite what Hollywood tells you it is pretty easy to murder someone. You can do it by accident, even. The human body is pretty fragile. Push someone, they hit their head and their brains are on the floor. It’s going to be much easier to do if you have a weapon. It’s unlikely to be the physically difficult thing that TV shows you.
Emotionally? Not gonna lie. If you have even a trace of decency left in you, you are going to hate yourself after the murder. That’s good. That’s a good thing. It means you aren’t like that monster you just killed, who would have raped, tortured and murdered you with no guilt. You are still a good person. Feel those feelings. Just don’t let them make you self-destructive.
If they have friends around, they are going to go looking. If they find the body, they may be able to track you down. Hide or bury the body, then get out of there, sharpish.
Depending on how you do it, you are going to need to clean yourself off. Don’t worry about the waste of water, it’s more important that you feel safe and comfortable right now. You’ve just breached a major rule and done a dreadful thing. You had to do it, and it the modern world they’d give you a short sentence, because it was self-defense. Do whatever you need to do to get yourself back in line with the person you are, to reconnect with your basic good-person-ness.
If you can’t do any of these things and you know it, I’d suggest not scavenging alone. Instead hire a loyal sociopath (or marry one) who will attach to you utterly and murder people for you. They’re really useful. Just stay on their good side!
 
And of course, this is all hypothetical. I must reiterate that I have never murdered anyone, nor do I have plans to, though if you break into my house and try and hurt me all bets are off.
 

Enhanced by Zemanta

Etiquette for an Apocalypse by Anne Mendel

It’s the 2020 Apocalypse and Sophie Cohen, former social worker turned neighborly drug dealer, must keep her family alive amid grueling and sometimes strangely amusing end of the world issues: starvation, earthquakes, plagues, gang violence and alas more starvation. She will be forced to investigate a serial killing and then, as if that isn’t enough, needs to take down the sinister emerging power structure, all-the-while learning to use a pizza box solar oven, bond with her chickens and learn to shoot a Ruger 9MM.
Etiquette for an Apocalypse [1. copy provided free by Bracket Press] is a pretty fun book with an engaging writing style and believable, enoyable characters.
By now, you’ll know I’m a bit sick of the same old apocalypse stories, and am actively looking for something different. I thouhgt I had it in Etiquette for an Apocalypse – the blurb I tracked down suggested it was primarily a murder mystery set in a post-apocalyptic world, which I was really into. However, half way through the book, that ceased to be the focus, and the plot went elsewhere. I was sort of disappointed by this – not that the actual plot wasn’t fun and entertaining, because it really, really was, but because I had been hoping for something else. (By the way, someone write a good, well-written and well-characterised post-apocalyptic murder mystery, and I will read the SHIT out of it).
Ok, so that noted, let’s talk about everything else. I loved Etiquette for an Apocalypse. I loved it a lot. I loved it with almost the same intensity I love shoes. Everything about it – the humour, the occasional lapses into script-style narrative, the first-person narrator being a middle-aged ex-social worker, her obsession with foods she can never eat again – was wonderful, a fresh attitude to post-apocalyptic writing.  Etiquette for an Apocalypse manages to portray the grim realities of life post-apocalypse whilst still being fun to read – and quite funny, too. It’s not going to be for everyone, but in my experience books that try to be for everyone often end up being for no-one. Etiquette for an Apocalypse does some things with narrative structure and voice that a lot of people won’t have seen in this sort of novel before – I think they make the book stronger, but more literarily conservative types could find them off-putting.
There are some minor problems – the first chapters are pretty seriously info-dumpy, and it’s purely because the information is actually interesting that Etiquette for an Apocalypse manages to get away with it. However, overall it’s an innovative, interesting book that deserves to be very successful.
For that reason, it gets the rare….
[rating:5 out of 5]

Graphic Novel Review: DOLLHOUSE VOLUME 1: EPITAPHS

Publisher’s blurb:
The Rossum Corporation’s Dollhouse technology has gone viral with a synchronized phone call that wiped the minds of everyone it reached, turning them into mindless killers. Those who avoided the call–including show favorites Echo, Alpha, Mag, Zone, and Griff–must try to survive in the sudden apocalypse and be wary of Rossum’s expansive technological reach.

In DOLLHOUSE VOLUME 1: EPITAPHS (Dark Horse) [1. This book was provided for review by Dark Horse] we get a look at the worst case scenario for the imprint technology used in Dollhouse the TV show. Robo-calls are made to just about everyone in America and if the person at the other end answered the phone, they were hit with an imprint. The imprint erased their personality and replaced it with that of a blood-thirsty killing drone.
Imprinted people have no actual reasoning or logic, just standing orders they’re compelled to obey. If every last person is dead, they don’t just snap out of it because the job’s done. Nope. They can either go on to task number two, be erased, or be reprogrammed.
Is a person still a person if you remove them from their body? Similarly, is a body still a person without the individual person inside of it?
It has always been easy enough to decide that a zombie should be killed. A change takes place that removes them from the Human bucket. Not only do they die but they also look dead and act inhuman.
What if they only did one of those things? Would we be so quick to pull the trigger or swing the bat if Mrs. May still looked exactly the same except with a new rage behind her eyes?
Continue reading “Graphic Novel Review: DOLLHOUSE VOLUME 1: EPITAPHS”

A Discussion of CROSSED

Crossed is a graphic novel written by Garth Ennis, drawn by Jacen Burrows, and published via Avatar Press. The story is set in a world where suddenly there are people who “stop being nice, and start being real.” Unfortunately, “real” in this scenario is bloodthirsty, rape-crazy, and straight up ultra-violent.
Crossed” is how the infected in this universe are described because they develop a cross-like rash across their faces. The rash isn’t an issue. What is and issue is that fact that the infected, unlike other apocalyptic infected, want to rape you to death and mutilate you and destroy you as slowly and horrifically as possible. Because that’s fun now, and okay, because no one can or will stop them. Don’t get me wrong, the Crossed can and do feel pain — but they love it and it won’t slow them down. So, either kill them dead or don’t get caught.
One of the main themes in Crossed was not getting caught. Our protagonists pushed on and on in a constant effort to not get caught by the Crossed until eventually they realized that there are some serious flaws in a plan to live just so you won’t die.
anninyn and I both read volume one recently and needed to discuss it. So we did. Together. In detail. With spoilers, and swears, and graphic descriptions, and even some spoilers for the movie Serenity (which, if you haven’t seen you need to; so, go fix that ASAP).
Below is our discussion and we hope you join in on it if you’ve read the book too. Continue reading “A Discussion of CROSSED”

Post-Apocalyptic People To Kill

Come the chaos of the apocalypse, people are going to die. Maybe en masse. Maybe slowly, but surely. Maybe by accidents. But definitely by murder. And that’s okay.

Every so often we’ll need to kill some fool who just refuses to act right or find their way to our good side. Congrats, Fool. You’re going to be an example; your life officially has meaning.

Examples of totally justifiable post-apocalyptic times to kill some folks:

Cheerleaders By prc1333
Photo Credit: prc1333

A.      The other day I saw school bus in the city and a squad of cheerleaders loading themselves onto it. That was weird. No sports team requiring encouragement, just a bus full of high school cheerleaders.

I, and a number of others, looked on quizzically. “hmm, that’s unusual,” we thought collectively.

But then there were a few others who were looking on not quizzically but lustfully. Grown ass men stared with their mouths agape to allow unencumbered panting as their eyes bugged, unblinking and their brows quirked expectantly.

Expectantly? What the fuck were they expecting? A strong wind? A well-timed tumble? A panty apocalypse paired with a strong wind and a well-timed tumble?

a.      In an apocalypse situation, that brightly colored band of super-coordinated bitches look like a heard of wounded baby gazelle to the men of the city playing the part of oversized, hungry Serengeti cats.

b.      In the post-apocalyptic world, from the first offence, this cheer squad will need to make an example of some fool to prevent further attempts at victimization. Continue reading “Post-Apocalyptic People To Kill”