As is fitting for a brooding vigilante that operates in the shadows, The Punisher has been shrouded in secrecy ever since the Marvel spinoff series was first announced in the aftermath of Daredevil season 2.
Yes, after resonating with Netflix subscribers the world over, Jon Bernthal’s Frank Castle was deemed worthy to headline his own standalone story set within the confines of Hell’s Kitchen, but there are precious few details currently available. All we know for sure is that The Punisher will adhere to the Netflix template of old and stretch for 13 episodes – The Defenders, by comparison, tapped out at eight instalments – with cameo appearances from the likes of Marvel mainstay Deborah Ann Woll.
A 2017 release date is on the cards, though, and the latest piece of intel has found its way online today via Entertainment Weekly. It concerns a new addition to The Punisher‘s cast – an Oscar nominee, no less. That’s right, Shohreh Aghdashloo has climbed aboard Marvel and Netflix’s offshoot in a recurring role. Best known for her turn in 2003’s House of Sand and Fog, it’s understood Aghdashloo will play the part of Farah Madani.
That’s the mother of Dinah Madani (Amber Rose Revah), if you hadn’t already guessed, who’s best described as a “skilled Homeland Security agent who’s vexed by the Punisher, a.k.a. Frank Castle. Farah is an Iranian by birth who has spent most of her life living in the U.S., where she’s established a successful practice as a psychiatrist.”
Also starring Ebon Moss-Bachrach, Deborah Ann Woll, and Ben Barnes, this is a major coup for The Punisher, and once again proves that Marvel’s Netflix catalog is able to attract A-list talent. Just look at Sigourney Weaver (Alien) playing the part of Alexandria, much to the dismay of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage and Iron Fist.
All 13 episodes of The Punisher will be available to stream before the year’s end; Marvel is likely giving The Defenders some more breathing room before it unleashes Frank Castle upon Netflix.