When Netflix announced that they struck a deal with Marvel I was super excited. Then I heard that they were bringing street level heroes out and I was even more excited as it was the perfect place to show these heroes because they don’t carry the cinematic weight like Spider-Man or Thor. Their fans are passionate but a much smaller audience and that’s rarely worth a gamble. When it was mentioned that Daredevil came first, I was simultaneously disappointed and happy: first because he was my third least favourite Marvel character but front loading him meant I would get three characters I do love all back to back (which we now know isn’t what’s happening). Once the show finally happened, I discovered how wrong I was. It was an amazing show and I was happy to hear that they were going to do a second season and if it wasn’t for the fact that I was so wrong about season one I would have been concerned that the second season was going to feature my second least favourite Marvel character: Punisher.
Building on everything the first season worked to create, we have the Punisher right out the gate. At first an unseen force, but Netflix doesn’t insult the viewer by being coy about everything and drops a great brawl between DD and Frank by the end of the first episode. The show features roughly the same (probably a tiny bit more) easter eggs as the first season in regards to the greater Marvel universe and that’s fine since the show does it’s thing really well without needing the rest of the universe to be involved. While Matt and his problems pervade throughout the season, Karen and her search for the truth behind Frank draws us through the powerful drama. I’d even argue that the Frank Castle portion of the story is the most interesting part of the season but that’s a very minor point with three storylines across thirteen episodes.
Cameos, special guests and fantastic combat sequences strewn throughout there’s little to dislike about this season and it just makes me more excited to catch Luke Cage, Iron Fist and the inevitable second season of Jessica Jones. Marvel and Netflix are entirely at the top of their respective games here and as much as I love Agent Carter and Agents of Shield, these shows feel more like 13 episode movies. Not that anyone needs my recommendation but for a peek into the dirtier side of Marvel comics away from the bright spandex and big explosive sequences. Plus it has ninjas and everyone loves to hate ninjas, more than aliens or robots.