Playing The Punisher Helped Jon Bernthal Change His Mind About Superheroes

While comic book adaptations have come a long way in the past decade or so, it seems that not every actor is on board with them just yet. One person who never really had any interest in suiting up for Marvel or DC was Jon Bernthal. However, after eventually signing on for the role of the Punisher in season 2 of Daredevil, he began to see things differently.

Speaking to GQ in a recent interview, the actor noted how he never really thought the “whole superhero-comic-book thing” was for him, but once he got to know a bit about Frank Castle, he changed his mind:

“I’m working on The Punisher now. You know, this whole superhero-comic-book thing is something I had zero interest in being a part of. The guys that I really, really respect as actors seem to have kind of purposely stayed away from that. I don’t mean that I’m above that or anything, just that it was not for me. But then when I got to know a little bit about this character… He ain’t got a [frick]ing cape. He ain’t got any superpowers. He’s a [frick]ing tortured, angry father and husband who’s living in this unbelievable world of darkness and loss and torment. Frank Castle resonates with me.

And comic-book fans are the greatest fans on earth. It’s not like their insane fervor isn’t based on anything. This is a super-intelligent fan base, because reading a comic book requires you to do a lot of work. You’ve got to fill in all these [frick]ing gaps. I’m respectful of that. These characters exist in their minds and hearts.”

For an actor like Bernthal, it makes sense that the darker and more mature aspects of the character are what drew him in. After all, we could never imagine him running around wearing spandex and a cape. Rather, the gritty, more grounded take on Frank Castle that Marvel’s presented with their Netflix version seems extremely well suited to actor, so it’s no surprise that he’s taken to the role like he has.

Given the extremely positive reception Bernthal’s had from fans so far, it seems like he’ll be sticking around for the long haul. We already know that his own spinoff show, aptly titled The Punisher, will be arriving in 2017, and he’ll more than likely pop up in season 3 of Daredevil as well. Plus, there’s also The Defenders, which he may have a role in. Though with so many characters already set to appear in the team-up series, we’re not too sure if there will be room for Castle.

Regardless, we’re certainly excited about The Punisher, as there’s a lot of interesting backstory that Marvel can explore with the show. We got hints of it in Daredevil, but with Frank Castle now being the main focus, the spinoff will no doubt dive into it a lot deeper when it premieres next year.

Tell us, are you a fan of Jon Bernthal’s take on the character? If so, what do you like best about his performance? Sound off in the usual place and let us know!