From the moment I read the first Punisher story I knew this was a character that seem to make
sense to me. Up until then Daredevil and Batman were a tie for my favorite comic book
persona. Frank Castle was a vigilante that was grounded in reality. He could exist in the real
world. A Vietnam vet who had his family killed by gangsters and wages a war on all criminals. I
am sure there are quite a few people who would be more than happy to put motherfuckers to
task. Writers like Mike Baron and Garth Ennis help take Frank Castle to another level then just a
minor Spiderman character. The moment I saw that punisher skull t shirt at the newsstand I got
my comic books at the time I knew I had to have that. But I had come there to buy comics and
not a awesome punisher death skull t shirt. I was on a limited income so the death skull had to
wait for two whole weeks for me get her. The day I bought that punisher death skull t shirt was
a great day in my comic book history. I treat that T like it was a hundred dollar designer shirt. I
took it to the cleaners whenever it got dirty. That death skull made me feel stronger when I had
it close to my skin. It actually put me in a different state of mind.
The early 90’s were a great time for the comics. You had great artist and great writers creating
great things. Thanos, the mad titan in love with death who himself had been brought to life in
the pages of Silver Surfer by the great Ron Lim and the demigod Jim Starlin, became God
with the use of the Infinity Gauntlet. All the hero’s of earth were no match for him and were
batted away like gnats. The various cosmic powered being received the same brutal treatment
as the Avengers, Fantastic Four and the various costumed superman of earth. The Infinity
Gauntlet also brought back Adam Warlock (who stole the Gauntlet) ,Gamora, and Pip the Troll.
Armageddon 2001 was a storyline that took place across all of the DC comics annuals that year.
One hero in the near future would destroy all other super beings and become a evil dictator
known as Monarch. A new time travelling character known as Waverider ventured into the past
to find out which hero would turn bad and try to stop him or her. The concept was great but
when they revealed which hero turned evil it was a huge let down. I wanted someone big.
War of the Gods started with powerful sorcerous Circe manipulating the gods into waging war
against each other so that she could kill the earth goddess Gaea. Captain Marvel under the
infulence of the Roman gods gets into a huge fight with Wonder Woman who is preventing him
from killing the Greek Gods. The art by George Perez was just awesome.
The most popular comic at the time were the X Men . Jim Lee was the artist of that era. Nobody
was as good as Jim Lee. He drew the Uncanny X Men at the time and Marvel decided that the
book was so popular “Why not make another book just called X Men? better yet why not make
several covers for the book with same story inside. And to top it off we will make a deluxe
edition that will have all the covers together!” My brother and I were fanboys at the time and
fell for that shit hook line and sinker. I am not sure if X Force came out before or after X Men
but they had a similar marketing ploy. Same comic, poly bagged, with like five different cards!
WOW! This may not have been the first mass produced but the trend for gimmicks in comics
was just around the corner. By the by Wikipedia informs me that X force came out first followed
by X Men.