Frank Castle’s impression of Wilson from CAST AWAY.
The ninth episode of Netflix’s original series DAREDEVIL provides some much needed explanation for the Punisher’s sudden nosedive down the crazy hole just as his legal defense team was about to pull ahead. We shift the spotlight over to the Kingpin, Wilson Fisk, played by Vincent D’Onofrio (JURASSIC WORLD, LAW & ORDER: CRIMINAL INTENT), and chronicle a short backstory of his incarceration and acclimation to his low position in the prison hierarchy. However, just like JURASSIC PARK’s Dr. Ian Malcolm used to say about life, it (genuine villainy) finds a way–a way to usurp the current king of the kong and commandeer the puppet strings controlling everything including the guards.
While I found it a bit too convenient that the entire security staff was bought and paid for by Fisk, I enjoyed the seeing the character size-up the entire facility and methodically claim it as his. D’Onofrio reliably showcases a fully formed character with Fisk, especially the sociopathic nuances of his dialogue, the articulated speech pattern, the seething manner dripping with a desire for control, the almost ritualistic daily routines. I also thought it was clever of the writers to illustrate Fisk’s most natural art with his pile of notepads. Prisoners typically are shown with some form of artistic work they’ve made or are allowed in their cells, typically something visual. However, Wilson Fisk’s talent lies in organized crime, so naturally his artistry manifests in dozens of yellow notepads; records for every strand of webbing he builds his web with. A web that reaches all way to the bailiff of Frank Castle’s trial.
I’d like to point out at the 09:00 time-stamp of episode nine, Vincent D’Onofrio’s spot-on impression of a jack-o-lantern. I’m quite serious, this is the type of look people want their pumpkins to have at Halloween. However, he switches gears by the end of the episode, when he is confronting Castle, and takes on the energy presence of a kodiak bear, with the swift, ferocity of a venom-spitting cobra.
Thankfully, the Punisher made a comeback that tickled my Tarantino gland. Frank Castle thins out the prison population by a drastic number in an array of gruesome methods, and faces down the Kingpin. This part was much needed; a guy can tolerate the Punisher shuffling around a courtroom in shackles for so long, a straight-up prison brawl was very welcome. My inner anti-hero was grinning big for Frank, the ending’s set-up for episode ten was nothing short of exciting.
Matt Murdock, in this episode, makes some dramatic life choices after being poisoned by an assassin of the ancient and deadly cult, the Hand and witnessing Elektra kill the young ninja. Despite needing his ass saved the night before, our hero decides to fly solo, cutting ties with the love of his life, Foggy, and shunning Elektra. At what point is Daredevil going to stop putting his ego in the way of priority? I understand he can’t tolerate cold-blooded killing, but taking on a ninja cult is not the type of job you turn down help for. I think the blind vigilante realizes he’s in deep trouble when one of his toughest enemies returns from the dead.
The office of Nelson & Murdock is shuttered and Karen–despite Foggy’s insistence to give-up–is left alone on her quest for truth and justice. She soon finds, what I feel, is her true calling, and inherits the mantle of a season-one favorite character. It was a great feeling to have from Karen, especially when she calls out Foggy for the obvious lies being spun to her by he and Matt, and being once again denied the truth. Props to Foggy for not breaking bro-code with Murdock, but I’m a little mad at him for hurting Karen again.
I can’t stay mad at him, though.