Posted by Tom Bacon @TomBacon
I'm a British guy who has a particular love of superhero movies - and I'm having a great time writing for Movie Pilot! Feel free to foll...
Tom Bacon

Earlier this week, we learned that Marvel's Punisher series has started filming, meaning we can confidently expect the show to air next year. Now, at New York Comic Con, we've learned that Deborah Ann Woll's Karen Page — a key cast member in Daredevil — has officially joined the cast of The Punisher!

Why Is Karen Page Important?

Karen is confirmed!
Karen is confirmed!

Punisher has been a very secretive series, and one of the abiding mysteries is this: how will Punisher relate to the rest of #MarvelNetflix? In terms of plot, it would make sense for Frank Castle to get as far from Hell's Kitchen as possible, meaning he wouldn't interact with the #Defenders at all. From a business point of view, that would also make sense; Punisher wasn't part of Marvel's initial deal with Netflix, so the series was probably a separate negotiation.

Karen Page's presence tells us that this isn't the case. Instead, this tells us that — for at least part of the story — the Punisher is near enough to Hell's Kitchen to meet up with a friend. Given that the series is likely to air in 2017 — and probably before Defenders — this will actually be the first time we've seen Karen since Daredevil Season 2. That series ended with Karen discovering Daredevil's secret identity, and Punisher is sure to give us at least some hints of her new status quo. Are Karen and Matt an item? Or did she run a mile from him after that revelation?

But this also means that Karen Page's story is separate from Matt Murdock's for a while. A lot of fans are speculating that Daredevil Season 3 will be based on the "Born Again" arc, in which Kingpin learned #Daredevil's secret identity, and systematically destroyed his life. The catch is that Kingpin learned this secret because, at the time of "Born Again", Karen Page was in a very dark place; she actually sold the secret. I don't really expect Daredevil Season 3 to perfectly reproduce that plot, but I wouldn't be at all surprised if Marvel uses Punisher to change the direction of Karen's life - setting her up to betray Matt in 2018.

Image: Netflix
Image: Netflix

This also raises an intriguing possibility that the Punisher will make his presence known in Defenders, which will see Marvel's Netflix heroes team up. Previously, I'd doubted it; but if he's close enough to Hell's Kitchen to meet up with Karen, then there's also a chance he could at least have a cameo in the team-up series.

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This latest casting announcement has raised some fascinating possibilities. At the very least, we now know the fantastic relationship between Frank Castle and Karen Page will be continued in Punisher — and I, for one, couldn't be happier.


Do you think Punisher will appear in the Defenders?

Source: Screen Geek. All images: Netflix