Thursday, April 19, 2007

Was the V. Tech Gunman a Punisher Comic Book Fan?


Much has been reported about the Virgina Tech Gunman's motives, and many news outlets have even begun to explore the movies and books that the Cho Seung-Hui (aka Ismail Ax) may have used as a template for his grisly attack. I read a number of comic books growing up and throughout college. And seeing images of the killer on television and all over the web, something gnawed in the back of my head. I felt like I had seen strikingly similar images before. The gunman's posing before a camera, his attire, and his choice of weaponry seemed eerily familiar... like something out of a Punisher Comic Book.




After some research online, I found the images that the killer's posing had reminded me of. However, just a short disclaimer: I am not purporting that the killer was a Punisher Comic Book fan, only that these images are shockingly similar. I am also not suggesting that if we do indeed discover that he read 'Punisher' comics, the creators, artists, writers, publisher are liable or at fault. My goal is to simply try and help to make sense of this senseless tragedy.


The Punisher is a Marvel Comics character at least three decades old. The character is transformed overnight from a Marine veteran into bloodthirsty vigilante when his family is killed by mobsters. The similarities I would draw in temperament and actions - The Punisher seeks to kill those he deems to be criminals. He executes them on the spot with impunity. The Punisher acts as judge, jury and executioner, and he is remorseless. Sound familiar?

Note the gloves and dual hand guns in this picture:


This final image seems telling in that the Punisher is wearing a tan-colored vest with ammunition strapped to it, and stands with his back facing the wall, much as the killer appears in the pictures he took of himself:



3 comments:

Anonymous said...

You could also say he was emulating Chung Yow Fat from the movie "The Replacement Killers," and *WOW* was Mira Sorvino *HOT* in that movie. I don't buy the "Punisher" angle, personally.

Gerry P.

Nick Brunetti-Lihach said...

True. And before that Chow Yon Fat did "Hardboiled" and "The Killers," which you'll find even better than "Replacement Killers."

I don't know that any single source can be pinned as the driving force behind the V. Tech killer's chosen appearance or weaponry, I just thought the Punisher angle was interesting.

Anonymous said...

thats Stupid its Chow Yun Fat from A better Tomorrow.