Ben Barnes, who plays Billy Russo, aka Jigsaw, in The Punisher, discusses his role as Jigsaw and whether he'll be back in another Marvel production. Frank Castle, who was first featured in season 2 of Netflix's Daredevil, received his own series with The Punisher, starring John Bernthal. Season 1 was launched in 2017, and both reviewers and viewers gave it relatively favourable reviews. Season 2 followed in 2019. With many fans still clamouring for a renewal of some kind, The Punisher was unexpectedly cancelled in 2019, along with all of Netflix's other Marvel shows including Daredevil and Jessica Jones.
The Punisher's first season follows not only Castle's evolution into the merciless antihero the Punisher but also Russo's descent into Jigsaw. Former friends and coworkers, Castle and Russo battle frequently on the show. In the season 1 finale, Russo violently suffers the famous Jigsaw scars when Bernthal's character grinds his face against shattered glass. Jigsaw's increased danger and scary white mask throughout Season 2 up the ante even higher. Jigsaw finally meets his demise in The Punisher season 2 finale when Castle finally gains the upper hand and shoots him. This follows a number of near calls.
Ben Barnes discusses his experience as Jigsaw on The Punisher and the likelihood of his character appearing again in the Marvel Cinematic Universe in an exclusive conversation with Screen Rant. Barnes isn't against Jigsaw making a comeback, despite the fact that he acknowledges the character's limited chances of returning. See Barnes' complete response below:
"Yes, no, I'm quite unhappy that my character is dead—at least in terms of canon—because I really enjoyed playing that role. I adored the lost little child who lived within the raving psychopath Marine. More expansive cosmos, it would have been fantastic to play him again with a face even more defaced; I think it would have been a lot of fun. One of my longest friends, Charlie [Cox], is going to really succeed in his own show, and I know it. Yes, I did enjoy playing that role, and I devoured the entire canon of that realm. So maybe, who knows, maybe there is a way to get back one day. He's really dead, therefore probably not as that character."
Could There Be A Punisher MCU Reboot Like There Was With Daredevil?
The only hero to receive an MCU remake so far is Daredevil, who was cancelled around the same time as Luke Cage, The Punisher, Jessica Jones, Iron Fist, and Jessica Jones. Cox's protagonist has previously made appearances in Spider-Man: No Way Home and She-Hulk: Attorney at Law, and his next project is the 18-episode reboot series Daredevil: Born Again. The Punisher's entry into the MCU is far less plausible given his more severe violence than Daredevil's, who has been able to blend in with the MCU quite easily. Regarding a potential comeback as the role, Bernthal has emphasised that any additional appearances would need to keep the character's dark and serious tone in order to pique his interest.
Although the level of violence in Daredevil: Born Again is still unknown in comparison to the TV-MA-rated Netflix series, it's likely that the relaunch might open the door for a Punisher remake as well. But as Barnes points out, his character had a rather conclusive finish in The Punisher, so the only possible way for Jigsaw to come back would be a whole reset. Bernthal and the rest of The Punisher's actors now seem to have a low likelihood of returning to the MCU, but Barnes' response strongly hints that it's not impossible.