The Punisher: Danger Close

"We rattled. Let's see what shakes loose."

The title of this episode may be about danger but the real theme of the night is betrayal – both real and perceived. But the question remains what are our "heroes" going to do about it.

Frank and Madani finally understand the field they are playing on and who they are playing against. Both deal with the fallout of their misplaced trust by lashing out. The only difference is which side of the law their methods fall on and if you hadn't noticed, the distance between the two seems to be converging.

Frank is wounded physically and emotionally and left wondering how far back Billy's betrayal goes. Not to mention, if Billy can't be trusted, can anyone? In his anger, Frank conflates Billy's actual betrayal with Micro's. He is unwilling to recognize that Micro followed the plan the two of them made together. It was Frank who charged off on his private mission to save Karen (not that I'm complaining). It's only after Frank realizes Sarah and the children have been taken that he reassesses his priorities. His decision to "kill 'em all," was merely a foregone conclusion.

While Madani is much quicker to connect the dots and put a plan into motion, that plan isn’t any more prudent than Frank's. She calls Billy in for questioning more to rattle his cage than because she believes he's going to admit any guilt. I think Madani was hoping he'd get spooked and make a mistake and/or lead her to Rawlins. Madani also turns to Rafi, someone she probably should have reached out to in the first place although I understand why she didn't. He has no ties to Rawlins that we know of so I'm going to keep my fingers crossed that he's worthy of her trust.

Rawlins spends the episode trying to give Billy a run for his money. His lack of honesty has backed Marion James into a corner and forced her to make compromises she'd prefer not to make. Marion calculates that for the good of the country, she will let Russo, who she knows is dirty, and Frank, whose crimes are a matter of record, take the fall – just as Rawlins knew she would. What he didn't count on was that Marion would also demand his resignation. Rawlins was right when he called her a realist. She now knows Rawlins cannot be trusted and therefore cannot work for her. He can't recognize there is a line much less realize he's crossed it. As horrible as Billy is, Rawlins' sense of entitlement disgusts me more. I was glad to see that Marion had a backbone and called him on it. Unfortunately, it makes me worry about her safety.

Sarah and her children may feel betrayed that Frank hid his identity but the real danger comes at the hands of Zach. Despite his mother explicitly saying they should keep their mouths shut he calls the Castle Tip Line bringing mercenaries to their door. It's a good thing that Micro's betrayal includes spying on his family. He can only hope that everyone accepts his return as well as Leo did.

The net is closing for all of our characters. Marion has Rawlins' number. Madani has Billy's. Frank has agreed to turn both Micro and himself over to Billy to save Sarah and the kids. But considering he reached out to Madani he must have thought of another card to play.

This episode served mainly as a transition between the emotional punches of the previous episode and the retribution that is sure to follow. All of which makes it really hard to score. I'm going to go with 3.5 out of 5 bulletproof suits.

Parting Thoughts:

Micro from vet to hacker. It explains his desire to fix things.

As soon as Billy knew Frank was in the building, he knew his team was dead. Did you notice he wasn't the least surprised that Frank was the person to call him?

Leo and Micro's reunion – priceless.

I wonder what the Anvil employees are thinking these days. They know their lives are at risk, but they've been dropping like flies lately.

Quotes:

Sarah: "Keeping our heads down, our mouths shut. That's what we do."

Rawlins: "Think of it as decommissioning unwanted ordinance."

Micro: "What happens to you. Happens to me."

Micro: "In reality, nothing's changed."
Frank: "Everything's changed."

Billy: "You wanna tell me this room isn't bugged. You can never be too careful."

Madani: "Nice suit. Hope it's bulletproof."

Madani: "He's gonna kill you. He's gonna enjoy doing it."

Rawlins: "None of us are safe until he's dead."

Billy: "Unless you want to go with me."
Rawlins: "We both know that's not happening."

Micro: "When we first started this it wasn't about the dead, it was about the living."

Frank: "After that, I'm gonna kill 'em all."

Marion: "Oh well... here I am. Enlighten me."

Frank: "Someday, sometime, this gonna come down to you and me."

Frank: "If he trusts you. I guess I do too."

Shari loves sci-fi, fantasy, supernatural, and anything with a cape.

4 comments:

An Honest Fangirl said...

I really, really loved seeing Frank go full on Punisher, complete with his costume, as it were. It was worth the wait to see Frank just completely mow down those Anvil guys. But also, poor Anvil guys! I realize that Billy is a bastard, but they can't all be evil, right?

Billie Doux said...

I knew at some point that Frank would go on a kill spree and by this time, I was almost okay with it. Like Fangirl said, though -- poor Anvil guys! they can't all be evil, right?

David and Leo! Wonderful. but it's partly horrible because I was going, what if he loses his wife and son?

I was also pissed at Zach for doing something so stupid, but also peeved at Sarah. I hate it when adults lie to their kids that everything will be okay when they're so obviously in a situation where it might not.

Shari Houtman said...

Thank you! As you probably know from some of my other reviews I have a pet peeve with adults trying to "protect" their kids by lying to them. First of all, it doesn't help. Secondly, their children aren't stupid. They usually know.

Patryk said...

It was probably the week break from the Punisher I took talking but the episode was great for me. Especially going full Punisher and getting all 3 leads on the same page. I bet the plan to extract the hostages will be great too watch too.

I hope the ending will match the series to date. It's defiantely one of the best shows they did on Marvel Netflix, top 3 along with Jessica and Daredevil season 1.