With a name in hand, Amy and The Punisher approached the precipice of truth regarding Pilgrim’s violent motives. Their search for Nikolai uncovered something much larger in scope than either of them expected though. Being thrust into the machinations of an alt-right political manipulation movement is the perfect time for Frank to begin learning the art of mercy. Such a lesson seemed to be lost on Russo, however, and now he has backup. It’s hard to fight a war on two fronts, but if anyone can do it Frank can.
Frank and Amy utilize a child pornography studio to develop the film. Frank holds the operator at gunpoint while Amy develops a picture of two men kissing at a funeral. Frank is dead set on killing the operator, but Amy convinces him to back down, suggesting that they burn down the building instead. They move forward in their pursuit of Nikolai by confirming his habitual daily schedule and spying on his daughter’s school. Frank’s daughter would’ve been a similar age as Nikolai’s by now, and Amy pushes him to talk openly about her. Frank chokes up after a few words and Amy offers comfort.
The next day, Frank and Amy carry out their abduction scheme outside Nikolai’s usual breakfast spot. Frank takes out Nikolai’s driver while Amy poses as a waitress and provokes Nikolai with a copy of the photo. Nikolai’s men follow Amy until she loses them following a wardrobe change. Nikolai tries to escape in his limo, but Frank takes him for a joyride to an abandoned warehouse. It’s time to get some answers.
The Ballad Of Jimbo
Curtis gives a homeless vet named Jimbo a pair of glasses while volunteering at a soup kitchen. Jimbo is thankful for both the gift and Curtis’s work with him during support group sessions. Curtis points out that the gift is to help Kimbo see where he is going in the future, committing to help him escape living in his car. An excited Jimbo enjoys his chili before meeting up with other support groups members at a bar. It is here where he meets Russo.
The revelry is interrupted when Jimbo realizes his car is getting towed. The loss of his home sends him spiraling, but Russo isn’t having that. He leads the group in an armed attack on the tow truck driver. Russo beats the driver down while the others release Jimbo’s car. Russo tells him to change his plates and get out of New York. They watch Jimbo speed off and realize that the act felt good. The vets want to do more, including robbing a bank. Russo’s influence is growing stronger.
Unfortunately, Jimbo doesn’t make it out of New York. He’s picked up by the police after stopping for a quick nap. Curtis visits him at the police station. He apologizes profusely and tells him about Russo’s actions. A concerned Curtis tells Jimbo to keep the information from the police.
Amy and Frank’s partnership continues to be tested as it grows. She asks him to teach her how to use a gun but he won’t do so until she can take his gun from him. Her first few attempts fail, but Frank teaches her how to disarm a shooter. Her victorious smile soon straightens when Frank stresses that she use the gun on the person she disarmed, no matter who it is, without hesitation. Amy finds enough strength in the moment to ask if Frank ever taught his daughter the same thing. Later, Amy gets upset when Frank chastises her for getting mixed up in Pilgrim and the Schultzes’ business. He stops her from leaving, but Amy’s anger boils over. Of course she would change the past if she could, and she’s pretty sure Frank would too.
Russo and Krista’s living situation grows more nebulous when Russo sees Krista changing by accident. Russo later apologizes, but Krista lashes out, pointing out that Russo is worth saving despite his self-destructive nature. He points out that she doesn’t have everything together personally as well before mentioning his meeting with Jake. Krista tells him to stay in the apartment from now on. He goes through her files, discovering that Krista believes Russo resembles someone with the initials KM. He confronts her about KM as she tries to face the window again. He pins her against the wall, his grip not wavering when she stabs him in the hand. Russo kisses her and Krista seemingly reciprocates after initially resisting.
The Wrong Side Of The Gun
Frank holds Nikolai at gunpoint, looking for answers. Nikolai’s suspicions that Frank is Kazan’s killer are debunked, leading Nikolai to mark Frank as an ally due to their common enemy: Anderson and Eliza Schultz. He tells Frank that the photo in question is of their gay son, David. The Schultz family operate a series of alt-right media groups that double as blackmail factories utilized to manipulate politics. They have been grooming David to become president while covering up his sexuality. The photo would ruin them if it went public. Nikolai offers to help Frank and Amy escape the country in exchange for the photo, but Frank isn’t up for it. In a moment of conscience, Frank spares Nikolai’s life, telling him to take his family and leave the country. Unfortunately, Nikolai doesn’t escape, meeting the business end of Pilgrim’s pistol a short time later.
Dinah and Curtis meet with Frank following encounters with Pilgrim and Russo respectively. With two separate battles on their hands, Frank promises to deal with both threats. Curtis stresses the need for strategy as they can’t fight a war on two fronts. They decide to focus on Russo, and Frank is going to do things his way. No more mercy.
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