How Ebon Moss-Bachrach's Micro Differed From The Punisher Comics

Ebon Moss-Bachrach The Punisher

Here's how Ebon Moss-Bachrach's Micro from Netflix's The Punisher differed from his comic counterpart. The Punisher was created by writer Gerry Conway and started life as a Spider-Man villain. Following the murder of his family, former Marine Frank Castle becomes a vigilante and dons the Punisher name, cutting a bloody swathe through New York's criminals. The Punisher has always been something of an outsider among Marvel superheroes - since he's really not a hero at all. The character has had mixed fortunes when it comes to live-action adaptations.

Dolph Lundgren first played Castle in 1989's The Punisher, which was hampered by a low-budget and the filmmakers deciding against the character wearing his famous skull logo. While it went straight to video in the U.S. the film is considered a fun b-movie now. Tom Jane (The Expanse) inherited the character for 2004's The Punisher, which was an origin story with John Travolta as the main villain. The film was a modest hit and a sequel was greenlit but Jane later backed out. The third and final movie was Punisher: War Zone, a  2008 reboot with Ray Stevenson; the film is a cult gem now but flopped upon release.

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Related: Why The Punisher Was Canceled By Netflix

Jon Bernthal would win acclaim for his work as the Punisher on Daredevil season 2 and took the lead for The Punisher TV series. The first season of The Punisher also introduced Ebon Moss-Bachrach as David Lieberman, aka Micro. Lieberman is a famous hacker and ex-NSA analyst who teams up with Castle to uncover a government conspiracy, which led to the death of Frank's family.

Microchip is a somewhat controversial character among Punisher fans, who feel the character didn't need a sidekick. The Lieberman from the comic was a legendary hacker who teams up with the Punisher after his nephew is killed crossing the Kingpin. Micro essentially became Castle's manager, securing him weapons and supplies, feeding him information on targets and acting as a friend. He's also capable of fighting if he must but he leaves the killing to Frank. Eventually, the two have a falling out, with Micro having doubts about their war on crime. After he betrays Frank and attempts to replace him with a new vigilante, he's eventually killed by rogue S.H.I.E.L.D agent Stone Cold.

While Micro had some fans he was generally considered irritating by The Punisher readers, but Ebon Moss-Bachrach's take on the character is much more interesting. His Lieberman is still quite neurotic but he and Frank form an oddly endearing friendship. Micro faked his death to hide from the NSA and is trying to reunite with his family. This gives him an emotional drive lacking from the comics, and his arc pays off in season one, which ends with him reunited with his family.

Ebon Moss-Bachrach brings a humanity to the character that was lacking from his comic counterpart, and while the combative, unlikely partnership is still there between Castle and Lieberman it works much better on the show. Unfortunately, Micro didn't return for The Punisher season two and following its cancellation, Moss-Bachrach is unlikely to reprise the part in a future project.

Next: The Punisher Season 2's Ending Explained

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