28
Sep 03

I DON’T KNOW BUT I BEEN TOLD ESKIMO PUSSY IS MIGHTY COLD

The Brown Wedge • 14,234 views

I DON’T KNOW BUT I BEEN TOLD ESKIMO PUSSY IS MIGHTY COLD

No, not an attempt to bring the vast audience of Inuit Porn seekers to a new cultural awareness of things literary – but instead Garth Ennis’ Vietnam-era Punisher series, BORN, which came to an end this week.

BORN‘s strong and violent Ennis meat, well worth reading and should be earmarked for trade soon enough, but it’s also a bit strange in a lot of ways. I’m not really sure why it’s there – well, it’s there because Garth Ennis wanted to write it and Darick Robertson wanted to draw it and they both did a bang-up job. But it doesn’t tell us anything we didn’t already know, either about the working of Marvel’s fictional universe or, unsurprisingly, about Vietnam – there’s a kind of “I remember it vividly, I saw the movie” hyperreality to Ennis’ Nam, essentially because the Punisher is there and it’s a matter of historical fact that he was nowhere to be found. The overall effect is that you’re drawn in by seemingly real human beings that you can care about and then booted out again by the scowling face of the crime-despising serial killer you love to hate to love. It’s tempting to compare this to Ennis’ frankly better WAR STORY issues for Vertigo, but there’s no point because WAR STORY was all about thoroughly-researched character studies showing the effects of war on human beings. We don’t get any human beings here. We get the murderous Mr P.

So if this is his show and his origin, what do we get? Blood in extraordinary quantities, obviously, but we like that. We get the fact that he clearly enjoys killing people, which we also know and like from his regular series. Ennis is allegedly dropping some of the more outrageous black-humour elements from the book and restyling it as a more sombre sweary title, so we get a preview of the future, and it looks fairly intense in a good way. We get more than enough – this wasn’t sold to me as WAR STORY. It’s a PUNISHER comic and considering 99.9% of all such things before Ennis were terrible, terrible shit, it’s up to the usual high standards we’ve recently come to expect, with added Charlie-in-the-wire-dammit Veetnam hi-jinks, as seen on TV.

Except. It is suggested – and I’ll keep spoliers to an absolute minimum here – that Frank Castle (for it is he) managed to be a Special Forces captain on a third tour of Vietnam and also not a day over 35 in 2003, not with Grecian 2000 and facelifts as you might expect, but with some supernatural help. I have been here before. And it sucked. If this character does have any appeal, it’s very much reliant on him being an ordinary insane man who has no powers or gimmicks aside from being an obvious psychopath. Once you subvert that, even if it’s by calling attention to the fact that if he was in Vietnam he should be a bit older, you’re on a hiding to some terrible sub-Moore ‘my life was a lieeeeeeee’ reworking. And considering that The Punisher’s had two of those already and his current sick-humour leanings could be said to be the last drop of juice being expertly wrung from a damp rag by a master juice-extractor, it’s a risky strategy at best. If anyone could kill this monstrous cash-cow before he destroys himself, it’d be Ennis, but the signs are that he’s not done playing yet. We shall see.

Comments

  1. 1
    ramon on 19 Mar 2007 #

    i dont know but ive been told eskimo pussys mighty cold if u dont believe me then go try some youll get frost bite on your toungue

  2. 2
    jean on 21 Jun 2008 #

    Artic pussies are the best. tHEY ARE THIGHT. WET. STRONG CONFORTABLE AND SMELL GOOD. i AM ADDICTED IN THEM

  3. 3
    Mark G on 22 Jun 2008 #

    If that was posted on ILX we’d have a new god.

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