Gun violence is, unfortunately, a topic too frequently in the headlines with tragedies such as the Las Vegas shooting last month and the more recent events in Texas this past weekend. With Mavel's The Punisher dealing heavily in themes of violence, the Netflix series' star is speaking out about the issue and how the show fits into the conversation.
Jon Bernthal sat down with ABC News to talk about the upcoming Daredevil spinoff and he explained that he thinks the best way to discuss gun violence is to take the topic on directly, something he thinks The Punisher does well.
"I think you go head on, I think you go head on," Bernthal said. "I think and I'm not... look, I think art, sort of the best thing that art can do is be a mirror to society and reflect what's going on and make you ask questions, force you to ask questions not necessarily try to answer them and I think one thing that the show does and you know in talking to Steve [Lightfoot,] I'm not even sure whether he did this on purpose or not -- Steve's the writer -- but I really think that there's nothing preachy about this show."
The show may not be preachy, but it does heavily feature gun violence. The Punisher follows Frank Castle, first seen in Marvel's Netflix universe on Dardevil's second season. The murder of Castle's family leads the Marine veteran to become a vigilante who brutally seeks justice by any means necessary. Netflix and Marvel pushed back the release date for the series following the Las Vegas shooting, but Bernthal thinks that what needs to happen now is dialogue about gun violence -- and that would include the show's multi-sided exploration of the issue.
"I think that all sides of the argument are sort of explored in it," Bernthal said about The Punisher. "Look, let's be honest, we put off the premiere of this show because of gun violence in this country and now the night before we premiere there's been another bout of it. There's been 900 gun deaths since Vegas, you know. There's clearly an issue. We clearly have a problem and what we need immediately I think is some open dialogue on it."
The Punisher premieres on Netflix on November 17th.