Tuesday, February 13, 2018

The Punisher

Hello, all!
I recently finished watching the Netflix original television show, The Punisher. I want to talk about the show a bit without giving any spoilers. Well, not really.

I thoroughly enjoyed it for a few different reasons. For one, people died, even main characters for no reason. This show is about military conspiracies and cover-ups, so you can bet your ass there was plenty of gunfire and hand-to-hand combat. The thing is, so many movies and TV shows are afraid to kill off characters right from the start. Usually, you want to have an elaborate backstory or reasoning as to why they were killed. The thing is, it isn't always like that in real life. Some people are just in the wrong place at the wrong time and you are given little time to grieve in that moment.
The main reason I loved this show was because it drew parallels to my favorite graphic novel of all time: The Crow by James O'Barr. Now, I have not read Marvel's The Punisher comics, but I was familiar with the story itself before watching the show. Frank Castle is a soldier who was back home with his family when they were all gunned down right in front of him. His wife and two kids, gone in the blink of an eye. This begins a cycle of revenge that soon appears to be never ending.
The Crow is also about revenge for a lost loved one. Eric Draven witnesses his girlfriend's murder before dying himself. He later comes back from death as The Crow, an agent of revenge.
 Now I am a sucker for a good revenge story, but what makes these two stories so special is the way they show the main character's suffering. Frank Castle and Eric Draven both go to extremes for their revenge, leaving pools of blood and dead bodies in their wake. They don't care about consequences. They don't care about right and wrong or crossing the line. In most cases, this would make them more of a villain than a hero. The truth is, they are more of an anti-hero: someone who doesn't do the morally right thing, but someone you can relate to and root for nonetheless.
Why relate to savage killers? With The Punisher, we are shown the world through Frank's eyes. Every day, he wakes up after dreams of his family. Whether they are pleasant memories, nightmares, or a cruel mix of both, it doesn't matter. We see how his loved ones are never far from his thoughts. He relives his pain over and over, again and again, and all he wants is his own form of justice since the system failed him. 
The same is true with Eric Draven. Between scenes of violence, we are shown his memories of Shelly, the greatest love of his life. Even after his own death, he mourns her still and we are given every painful detail of his suffering.

This suffering is what makes these characters so relatable. Even as they break bones and fill men with bullets, we can't help but to root for them. The line between right and wrong is blurry, for sure, but these emotionally gutted individuals still elicit sympathy from the audience. 

And last but not least, The Punisher is a new favorite because Jon Bernthal is an amazing actor that played the part so beautifully, that I was often trying not to sob out loud. His performance was powerful and moving. Plus, you know, eye candy!

I recommend this show to anyone who loves their action fast, their violence hard-core, and their hearts being ripped to shreds with those deep feels.

Friday, February 2, 2018

January Reads & Reviews

Hello my faithful readers! Tis I, Marie, your reviewer of indie books, here to give you another list of interesting books I read in January. So without further ado, here are the indies I enjoyed last month.

by Karina Kantas

Rating: 4 Stars

This book delivers on everything the blurb promises: introductions to a couple novels that leave you wanting more, flash fiction, and poetry. Well written and full of emotion, this was certainly an enjoyable read. 

Pretty Guilty
by K.L. Cottrell

Rating: 5 Stars

A perfectly beautiful story.
K.L. Cottrell has such an amazing way with words. Her characters instantly jump off the page and the story immediately draws you in. She makes it so easy to fall in love with her characters, to feel their joy and sadness as your own. This story is laden with life lessons and really tugs at the heartstrings. 10 stars!

The Guardians
by Gina Moray

Rating: 4 Stars

Equal parts thriller and murder mystery, this book will take you to dark places. I was reminded of Needful Things by Stephen King, with the way a demon drove into town and made deals, for a price. In the end, the price was too steep. Corpses and fields overflowing with blood were all that was left.
Gina Moray certainly puts you in the middle of all the action and horror. A creepy read that is not for weak stomachs!

Lunatic Justice
by Garrison Kelly

Rating: 5 Stars

This collection of poetry and songs will keep you on your toes and leave you shaking your head at the world at large. Garrison Kelly not only exposes the sad truths of mankind but puts them on display. The results are sometimes hard to swallow, or hard to read, but will elicit an emotional reaction from you. Whether that emotion is fear, anger, sadness, or disgust depends on the reader.
My favorites of the collection were "I Apologize," "My Body," "Thank You," "Rise and Shine," "Shadow Hawk," "Coasting," "I Still Remember," "Screaming Into the Abyss," and "STEM Sell."

All four and five star reviews last month! Woohoo, that's some entertaining reads! I hope you find a title from this list that sparks your interest. Always remember to tip your waitresses and review the indie products you enjoy. 
Happy reading!