Spring Break Reviewstravaganza: Punisher #9 (1988)

Note: Yes, this one is late too. Sorry. Also, the scanner issues continue.

Whilce Portacio

Note 2: This was originally to be a review of both 9 and 10, but 10 is actually one half of a crossover with Ann Nocenti’s Daredevil. That necessitates its own post sometime in the future.

Script by Mike Baron|Pencils by Whilce Portacio|Inks by Scott Williams|Letters by Bill Oakley|Colors by John Wellington|Edited by Carl Potts and Tom DeFalco

We kick this off with a cover featuring Frank getting snuck up on by a ninja like a chump, right in the middle of reloading. Frank’s better than that.

The Punisher is enjoying a normal day of cleaning his weapons and watching the news while reminiscing about friends he failed to keep from being murdered. This friend, Quentin O’Toole, was killed by the Billionaire Boys’ Club, who Frank’s been trying to get on an insider trading rap. Yes, insider trading, the most exciting of all forms of crime. Another casualty, but not fatality, of the Punisher’s war on the Billionaire Boys’ Club, Microchip’s son, wants to get in on the action despite his injuries and the wishes of his father.

The dead friend gave a clue before dying, which pointed to someone named “Roky”. Punisher gets to tracking Takegura, another Boys’ Club member, and uses what I can only describe as The Battle Board of the Repunisherblic to disable his limo. It is my greatest shame that I cannot provide a picture of the Battle Board. It’s a skateboard that he uses to shoot tear gas into the limo, a skateboard apparently powered by a winch from the GODDAMN SPACE SHUTTLE. The space race: making skateboards crazy badass since 1988. It takes out the limo, but the driver is still unaffected, since they had the partition between the driver and the passengers up. So Frank has to let loose. Takegura is put into the battle van, and automatically assumes Frank is a ninja. Takegura spills on the rest of the guys, and I’d give details, but all it really means is that more people are going to be gunned up and clapped quick.

So Frank uses Takegura to get a chance at Roky. He brings Junior along on the ride. Frank and Takegura have a conversation about Frank’s motives. Trade gets made, but guess what? Someone brought a ninja with them. The ninja gets Roky, and it seems he got Junior. Junior was packing a pistol, so that gives Frank the upper hand against the ninja. What also helps is that one of Takegura’s colleagues was there with bodyuards to kill Takegura. But guess what? Takegura wasn’t dead, got the ninja’s sword, and gets the drop on the bodyguards before giving Frank the opportunity to take care of the main dude. Takegura gets killed immediately afterward by Frank, who gives the guy a handgun and tells him to squeeze it like his morning toothpaste. The guy does.

Frank goes back to HQ and gives Chip his son’s body, and the comic ends with a really good splash page of Chip crying over his son’s body while the Punisher walks stoically away.

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