The Punisher season 2, episode 3 review: Trouble the Water


Frank Castle and The preacher finally come face to face in this action packed episode of The Punisher season 2

The Punisher season 2, episode 2, ended with Frank and Rachel being processed in Larkville’s police precinct after participating in an intense and insanely bloody shooting. In true Punisher fashion, Frank left many corpses behind as a result of the Preacher’s minions trying to hunt him. However, even if he managed to come out victorious, our hero’s luck seemed to run out when the police arrested him along with Rachel and Marlena Olin, one of the Preacher’s assassins. That left the Punisher with a pair of handcuffs and seemingly nowhere to go. His options were almost non-existent, and with limited resources, he decided to use his only call to contact agent Madani.

Meanwhile, the Preacher (or John Pilgrim, as the show decides to call him) found out about Frank’s location. As a result, he goes to the police precinct in order to take a look at the Punisher for himself. He’s convinced “Pete Castiglione” is not a normal guy with a clean past, and while his motivations are not totally clear for hunting him, he seemed to be very keen on coming face to face with Frank Castle.

Freeing from the nightmare

One of the highlights of this episode came in the form of Billy Russo escaping from the medical institute he was being held in. Even if agent Madani believes he planned his escape all along, it was pretty interesting to see it was just a psychological response. As we learned in the previous episode, Billy’s mind is in a highly unstable place. He’s scared, but he doesn’t know why. He killed, but he doesn’t remember any of it. The show made a terrific work of making him feel like a completely new character who’s only trying to put pieces of a puzzle together. One with truly Post-Traumatic Disorder.

More from TV

When put under pressure, Billie’s first instinct was to attack the guards and escape. Even if his memory is a little off, he does remember about being a marine and working side by side with Castle. With that in mind, it will be interesting to see how his character develops throughout the rest of the season, and how does he reacts when he finally comes face to face with Frank.

While Billy Russo hasn’t done much in the first episodes, he has the potential to become a truly formidable foe once again. Let’s just hope he doesn’t get pushed as a side character for most of the season while the Preacher takes the spotlight. Because even if the latter manages to be a bit intimidating, he doesn’t have all the backstory nor motivation that Billy has.

Troubling the Water

The Preacher goes to the precinct where Frank and Rachel are, insisting on taking the both of them for still unknown reasons. However, when the sheriff declines to let them go, everything goes down for our heroes. The Preacher and his followers attack the precinct and the officers in it. Everyone inside barricades the entrances, but they know that won’t be enough to stop what’s coming. When the sheriff realizes his team is not ready to face what’s outside, he struggles to decide whether or not to release Frank, and that’s where this episode really starts to shine.

This is a small precinct with very few officers who haven’t come across any real danger before. Many of them haven’t even shot a gun in the field, so they start to argue whether if Frank is worth all the problem. Even if the sheriff wants to keep him in at all costs, his team doesn’t, and with one partner already shot, it becomes even more difficult to decide what’s right and what’s not. This dilemma is what keeps the episode going forward, keeping things tense and presenting a great dynamic between Frank and the sheriff. The two of them go from complete strangers to partners in just a couple of minutes, and the best part of all is that it truly feels genuine. There’s some complexity in that relationship, as the sheriff thinks Frank’s a bad guy who he won’t let escape. In the end, however, he sees the Punisher as a necessary evil, perhaps, and one that he’ll let go in order to save his team.

The confrontation

The final minutes of this episode are arguably the best. Even if the Punisher has his right hand injured, he still goes outside the precinct and shoots at everything that moves. This confrontation is tense, well-shot and highly entertaining. Nonetheless, it wasn’t the best action scene of the series so far and it had an overall feeling of emptiness in the end.

This is the first time the Preacher and Frank come face to face, but what was supposed to be a great and exciting moment ended up feeling a little disappointing. We don’t know who John Pilgrim is, or why he’s so keen on killing the Punisher. There’s not a direct connection between these characters and, as a result, their dynamic feels forced. Unfortunately, their shallow relationship and the lack of development of the series’ bad guy is what prevents this moment from truly shine. Let’s just hope that, as the series goes by, John Pilgrim gets the chance to redeem himself.

Next. The Punisher season 2, episode 2 review: Fight or Flight. dark

What do you think about The Punisher Season 2 so far? Let us know in the comments below! And stick around with Bam! Smack! Pow! for everything super-hero related.