The Punisher better than sex
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The Punisher better than sex
by Rajkhet Dirzhud-Rashid - SGN A&E Writer

The Punisher: War Zone
Opening December 5

Sometimes, when sex isn't happening, I'll take violence as a substitute. Okay, I'm wired stranger than the average person, but hey, whatever blows your panties off, right? Right.

With those words of wisdom in mind, and still burning over a recent breakup, I gleefully threw myself into enjoying the full-on, pedal-to-the-metal ultraviolence ripping up the screen at the screening of The Punisher: War Zone. And take it from me, someone who celebrates the darkness of Kali Ma as well as the light of nicer goddesses, this one ain't for wusses or the faint of heart.

Like you need a plotline with all of these things blowing up, there actually is one, and it's pretty well integrated into the comic book action. Also, Ray Stevenson is the best Punisher since Dolph Lundgren's moody pout set a junior high, closeted Transperson like myself to fluttering with adolescent joy.

So, the plot of this latest in the incarnations of the Marvel comics come to life is even tastier than the last big-screen foray a few years back. Stevenson plays the grim-faced hero/vigilante with a heart, who goes on an all-out war to eliminate the major mob players in New York City, particularly a new group of criminals led by Billy (Dominic West), a whackjob who loves the sight of his own face  that is, until he is given a makeover by Frank Castle (Stevenson) during a shootout between the feds and Billy's gang. Thus Jigsaw is born, with a murderous desire to take down Castle, aka The Punisher, at all costs. Recruiting his truly crazy brother Loony Bin Jim (Doug Hutchinson) and a lowlife army, things get ugly, bloody and explosive pretty damned quick, but not before an FBI agent with a grudge of his own (Castle unknowingly blows away his partner, who is undercover in the middle of the aforementioned bloodbath) enlists the aid of an obsessed psychoanalyst to go after Castle and bring him in. Also Julie Benz plays the dead fed's wife (she looks great with black hair, but you'll remember her as the blonde vampire on Angel and Dereks girlfriend), who has a sweet little girl who Frank ends up having to save. That's probably the dorkiest part of the film, but I still ate it like a dish of potato chips with hot sauce on them. Bottom line, this film will give it you in the best way, and hey, it won't stand you up, laugh at you or make you cry (like a lover will) after all the good sex.