It'll likely be a while before we get the full story of how Frank Castle found himself under the control of Marvel Comics' Mad Titan, but in Thanos #16, we'll see how the Punisher bonded with the demon Zarathos to become the Ghost Rider.
That issue, written by Donny Cates with art by Geoff Shaw and colorist Antonio Fabela, arrives in stored Wednesday, Feb. 21, but CBR has an exclusive preview of it today. In addition to the first look at Frank Castle's cosmic journey, Cates spoke with us about how someone with Frank's indomitable will could find themselves so utterly broken as to live in service to someone like Thanos, a cosmic being who's very reason for living runs counter to everything the Punisher believes in.
"The Rider’s story became a very important piece of this whole big tale," Cates told CBR in a recent interview. "At first I was worried I was shoehorning in an idea because it was cool, but the more I built on it the more the story of Frank Castle’s descent into what he’s become became something that fit this story really well."
"If Frank Castle has a super power it’s his unbreakable resolve. This is a man who can not be corrupted," Cates explained, showing that he understands why some fans may not buy the Punisher turning into anyone, even Thanos', lap dog. "This is a man who, whether or not you agree with it, has a stand that he has cemented. He’s not a dude whose opinion is going to sway. So to see him giving up on his own ideals because of Thanos is another display of just how terrible Thanos is. By just being around him he broke the most bull headed character of all time."
Check out CBR's preview for Thanos #16 below, and the rest of our interview with Cates, here.