Netflix and Marvel TV have reportedly pushed back the series premiere of The Punisher in the wake of the mass shooting that occurred in Las Vegas earlier this week. Frank Castle, aka the Punisher (played by The Walking Dead's Jon Bernthal), made his official MCU debut in the second season of Netflix's Daredevil last year, and fan reception to character, as well as subsequent petitions, convinced Netflix to pursue a full-fledged series for the famed anti-hero.
Although a release date has yet been given, The Punisher was confirmed to premiere sometime this fall season, presumably either in October or November. And it has been clear for the past several weeks that Marvel TV was planning something big for the series for New York Comic Con 2017. Understandably, though, in response to this week's mass shooting - which resulted in 58 people confirmed dead and another 500 or so wounded - Netflix and Marvel TV decided to pull Punisher's NYCC panel from the schedule. But it appears that they aren't stopping there.
Over the past several weeks, rumors have suggested that Netflix was planning on having a surprise launch for The Punisher (as early as Saturday, October 7th), and they were planning on making the announcement during their panel at New York-Comic Con this weekend. But in conjunction with pulling the series' from their panel at the annual convention, Newsday reports that the streaming giant has reportedly decided to push the series' debut to later this fall, citing the Las Vegas massacre as the reason.
Although this news hasn't been confirmed by either Netflix or Marvel TV, it's certainly plausible. After all, there's precedent for such delays. For instance, following last year's mass shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, FL, TNT delayed the season 3 premiere of their post-apocalyptic drama, The Last Ship, which happened to feature a shootout inside a club. And considering the nature of the Punisher, who fancies using high-powered weapons to kill his enemies, and sometimes even works against heroes, it makes sense to avoid any sort of correlation between his actions and the Las Vegas shooting.
Still, that doesn't mean the series will be delayed indefinitely. Since Netflix never announced a premiere date and their rumored plans to surprise fans with a debut this weekend is no longer a viable option, the series isn't technically being delayed. At this point, we'll just have to wait and see when The Punisher will debut, but all indications point towards another date later this fall.
The Punisher premieres sometime later this year. Premiere dates for the new seasons of Daredevil, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, and Iron Fist have yet to be announced.