(Warning - mild potential SPOILERS for Daredevil Season 2 lie below. Proceed with whatever level of caution your innate SPOILER-aversion dictates...)
Now, if there's one thing that The Punisher is famous for, it's delivering a very particular (and lethal) kind of justice to criminals, in the bloodiest way possible. Whether it's feeding them to piranhas, dropping them into bear-enclosures, or simply gunning them down in brutal fashion, Frank Castle has historically been defined not only by his violent and murderous crime-fighting crusade, but also by the gruesome path he takes to get there.
That (firmly R-Rated) level of violence was very much reflected in the movie versions of the anti-hero that we've seen thus far - but with The Punisher's imminent arrival in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, that could all be about to change. Y'see:
It Sounds as Though The Punisher Is Being Toned Down for His Appearance in Daredevil Season 2
Or, at least, that's what the series' former show-runner, Steven S. DeKnight, seems to suspect. After all, though Daredevil's second season will likely somewhat change in tone with the arrival of The Punisher - as played by Jon Bernthal - that doesn't mean that it'll shift all that far from its established formula of (relatively restrained) 'PG-16' violence.
As DeKnight put it to /Film, when asked whether the show's depiction of Castle would match the violence of, say, Punisher: War Zone:
"Doubtful, that was pretty violent...The first season of Daredevil was violent but I always say it was more implied. It wasn’t nearly as violent as The Walking Dead, a show that I love. On that, if somebody were to crush somebody’s head in a car door, you would’ve seen the head crush on screen but we didn’t want to go quite that far. We wanted to keep it right around PG-16 and not go all the way to the R. I have no idea if they’re planning to push it that far next season but I would be surprised."
Or, in other words, while we can't expect to see quite the same level of horrific violence that Punisher comics have become renowned for, we may well still see 'everything but.'
What's more, from the sounds of it:
This Could Still Be the Most Faithful Punisher Adaptation Yet
Or, at least, that's what DeKnight went on to suggest, arguing that the previous on-screen incarnations of the character lacked a certain Marvel authenticity:
"The thing about The Punisher, and I think there are great things about each of those versions, but none of them was completely the Marvel version...And none of those movies were under the Marvel Studios banner until they recently got The Punisher back. So this is really the first time that we’re seeing the Marvel Studios from the Iron Man days, when they can control their own product, actually do this character."
Which, however we might feel about the level of violence the show's likely to include - and, in fairness, Daredevil's first season wasn't exactly lacking in brutal moments - is surely a good thing.
'Character is faithfully adapted' is, after all, some of the highest praise you can give any comic-book movie or series nowadays - and with a character as iconic as The Punisher, it might just prove essential...