Things are beginning to take shape in “Nakazat”, which reveals some important plot details and brings our heroes closer together.
This recap of The Punisher Season 2, Episode 6, “Nakazat”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
First on Frank and Amy’s agenda in “Nakazat” is getting those revealing photos developed, and where better to do that than in some illicit backstreet photography operation. Frank, naturally, hates the sleazy young guy in charge of the place – his rabid dislike of child predators goes all the way back to Daredevil Season 2 – and it takes everything in his power not to kill the guy before Amy is even finished. At least she’s starting to get on his wavelength: “You could always burn the place down if it makes you feel better.” He does.
While those two are shacking up at his apartment, Curt is lying through his teeth to his new girlfriend about why they’re staying in a hotel. I feel for Curtis. He’s a proudly nice guy who is eager to help out everyone he encounters, but here he is telling fibs to his new lover and carrying a gun around everywhere just in case some maniac turns up shoot him. Friends like Frank Castle – who needs them?
Certainly not Billy, who is making friends of his own in “Nakazat”. One of them is Dumont, who he spies on getting dressed, and another is Jake, who he continues to become pally with, along with other members of Curt’s therapy group, including an obviously very vulnerable guy called Jimbo who gets his car towed. In an act of retaliation Billy and his new crew retrieve the car, but Billy flips out and batters the guy towing it, meaning that Jimbo has to flee. I’m pleased to see Billy is as well-adjusted as ever, and so is Dumont, whom he attacks and then kisses as the power dynamic between them begins to pivot.
Frank and Amy, meanwhile, are staking out their new target: a Russian high-flier named Poloznev. While they’re at it they continue to bond; Amy is around the same age that Frank’s daughter would have been had she survived, and it’s clear that Amy is becoming a surrogate for her in an expected but not altogether unwelcome development. Having said that she does keep pressing the boundaries somewhat by repeatedly pushing Frank on the family issue. You’re not that close yet, Amy!
While Frank teaches Amy has to disarm a gunman, Pilgrim is very much not enjoying New York. Both he and Mahoney (though obviously not at the same time) go to see Madani in “Nakazat”, whose obvious holding back of information is starting to grate. Madani, though, knows she isn’t going to get this done by acting through official channels, so an alternate solution needs to be found. I wonder what that could be?
Ready for more exposition? Well, here it comes. After jacking Poloznev’s limo (it’s a fun sting in which Amy impersonates a waitress) Frank drives him out to the middle of nowhere and pumps him for information, which he’s relatively forthcoming with, all things considered. See, there’s this powerful family called the Schultzes, who manipulate politics using alt-right websites to slander their opposition – topical! – and have groomed a son, David, to become the next president. The only problem is that David is gay, and Amy’s photos prove it. You’d think America would be relaxed enough these days that an openly gay Commander in Chief would be perfectly fine, but you’d be dead wrong. And the Schultzes are all about a family image which their son enjoying the company of men would presumably sully.
Frank, when he learns that Poloznev has a daughter, lets him live – but Pilgrim, who is obviously working for the Schultzes, isn’t so merciful. At around the same time Jimbo is pulled over by the police and calls Curtis for help, informing him about how Billy has ingratiated himself into the therapy group. Curtis, like Madani and like Frank, knows something needs to be done about this situation, so all three get together to discuss sorting it out as a team. I’m on board.