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3AM Recap

Frank is playing guitar for his daughter.

Frank sits in prison, playing the guitar.


In rural Alabama, Punisher chases after two men on motorcycles and guns them down. He then runs them over and continues on his way.


In Juarez, Mexico, Punisher draws a bead on a cartel drug lord as he goes into a club. Once he has a clear shot, the Punisher shoots him in the head.


At JFK International Airport, a nervous man named Mickey O'Hare goes into the restroom and checks his boarding path. He then gets into a stall and makes a call, confirming that he's the only one left. Punisher smashes his way into the small, hits Mickey in the face, and Mickey begs for his life. He says that he has a family, and Punisher points out that he doesn't. Mickey asks him what difference it makes if he's dead, and Frank tells him nothing. The man yells in pain and the two businessmen outside assume that Mickey and Punisher are having sex. They walk out and Punisher chokes the man.

Later, Punisher burns his costume.

Six Months Later

A bearded Frank is pounding on a concrete wall at a construction site, slowly chipping away at it. The workers lead the new man, Donny Chavez, past Frank. Later, they workers tell Frank that it's lunch time but Frank hammers a little longer. He then goes up on the roof to eat lunch, and then goes back to work. Frank continues through the night, screaming in rage and remembering his dead children. He finally drops the hammer covered in his bloody handprints and goes to his apartment to wash up. Once he's done, Frank eats and remembers having a picnic with his family. He lies on the bed and reads, a photo of his family on the bed stand.

The next morning, Frank imagines his wife Maria next to him in bed as he wakes up. He goes back to work, hammering, and a worker asks him what the story is with him. The worker warns that they don't pay Frank extra for coming in early and leaving late, and he and the others except Donny figure that Frank is nuts. Their leader Lance tell him that they're getting less overtime because of Frank, and kick his lunchbox away. Frank turns to face them and hand tightens on the sledge hammer.

As the workers leave, Donny asks if he can go with him and they say that there's no room. Frank watches from above and sits down, and Donny goes up to join him and introduces himself. He asks why Frank comes up there, and Frank says it's because no one else does. Undeterred, Donny offers Frank one of his sandwiches. Frank takes one if Donny will stop talking, but Donny refuses to make any promises. He talks about how all the workers are upset because they need the money, and points out the scars on Frank's chest. Frank says that he was in the Marine Corps, and Donny tells him that his father was in the Corps and was killed with his wife in a car accident. He came to NYC to live with his grandmother. Frank thanks him for the sandwich but says that he's not looking for a pal and he's not whatever Donny is looking for.

That night, Frank goes to a support group run by an ex-soldier, Curtis Hoyle. As Frank stands outside listening, Curtis welcomes the newcomers. One ex-soldier, O'Conner, talks about the liberal assholes running the country into the town. Another ex-soldier, Lewis Wilson, says that he fought for the country and it has no place for him, and O'Connor insists that a time will come when they have to defend themselves. Lewis tells the group that they risked their lives and did terrible things, and it meant nothing when they got home.

After the meeting, Curtis asks Lewis how he's sleeping. Lewis says that group helps and so does reading. Curtis tells him that the answers have to be his own. Once Lewis leaves, Frank comes in and tells his friend that it was a good meeting. Curtis points out that it's been a while, and Frank gives him back the book that he loaned him. As Frank gets coffee, Curtis says that Lewis drives a cab and part of the problem is that no one wants to be themselves. He wonders what will make Frank happy, and figures that Frank hurts himself before anyone else can. Curtis insists that Frank Castle is dead, but Frank in his new ID is alive and everyone who killed his family is dead. He says that Frank is just punishing himself, and Frank thanks him for the coffee and starts to go. However, he stops and asks Curtis if he thinks about what they did. Curtis tells him that his conscience is clear, and tells Frank to stop wallowing in his self-pity before he beats him to death with his fake leg. Frank chuckles and leaves.

The next day, Agent Dinah Madani pulls up to ICE headquarters, goes in, and tracks heroin traffickers on a board in her office. She tells her new partner Sam Stein that her last partner Ahmad Zubair was taken from his home in Kandahar, shot in the head, and buried in an unmarked grave. She insists that Sam isn't her partner, He points out that they according to their assignments, and Dinah tells him that he has to earn her trust first. Sam warns her that their boss Carson Wolf might not let them run with what she's gathered, and Dinah insists that her case has merits.

Carson comes in and wants to hear the case that she brought back from Afghanistan. Dinah explains that Ahmad discovered that American soldiers were trafficking heroin and they killed him. Carson orders Sam out and tells Dinah that her investigation was deemed worthless. They pulled her out before she hurt her career, and Carson says that Ahmad might have been dirty. Dinah figures that she was pulled out before she found something, and Carson tells her that Kandahar is off-limits. Smiling, Dinah agrees and Carson leaves.

That night, Frank is back hammering at the wall. :Lance and the others come by, and Donny convinces them to take him with them if he buys the first round for them. They agree and leave.

Sam comes in and asks Dinah about her meeting with Carson. He says that he knew Carson didn't want her case because he assigned Sam to her. Sam refuses to tell her how he got demoted until she earns his trust. After a moment, Dinah tells Sam to get her whatever he can on a Marine Force Recon colonel named Schoonover and one of his men, Frank Castle. Sam points out that Frank is dead, and Sam figures that he's already demoted so he'll help her. He's surprised that Dinah wants to join him.

At the bar, Donny and the others are closing down the bar. The bartender, Rhonda, looks on. Meanwhile, Lance tells his friend Paulie that he owes money to a loan shark and needs another job. Paulie says that he'll see what he can do. A drunk Donny comes back, and Lance tells him to pay up. The tab come to almost $350 and Donny reluctantly gives in as the other workers cheer him.

Frank dreams of being with Maria, and then wakes up-. Later at work, Frank overhears Paulie telling Lance that his cousin got him a job robbing a high-stakes poker game. Paulie explains that it's protected by the Gnuccis, and Lance warns that it's dangerous. His friend talks him around, and Lance notices Frank sitting nearby. They ask if Frank was listening to them, and Lance tells him to mind his own business. Frank gets up and picks up his sledge, and Lance asks if he wants to do something with it. He tells Frank that he'll mess him up without a sweat, and Frank just stares at him. A man yells when he breaks his arm, and Lance and Paulie run over. Donny asks Frank if he knows first aid since he was in the marines, and Frank just walks away.

As the ambulance takes the injured workers away, Lance says that they should call it off. Paulie tells him that his cousin will figure they pussied out and Lance agrees to do it. They recruit Donny since the other man is dead, admitting that it it's illegal. They ask if he's in, and Donny finally agrees without hearing the details. Frank walks by and Donny glances briefly at hm.

At her mother's apartment, Dinah tells her mother Farah that she resents being forced to come back. Farah wants to make sure that Dinah is trying to avoid dealing with her guilt, and Dinah says that she told Ahmad that he could trust her. When she pours herself a drink, Farah asks how much she's drinking and Dinah insists that she doesn't need therapy from her if anyone. Her mother--a psychiatrist--questions her briefly and says that it's part of being a mother, and welcomes Dinah back. Dinah says that it's temporary, and Farah says that her husband's faith is as strong as her lack of it. Her daughter says that she has faith in the system that gave them freedom, but warns that it's fragile and needs protection. Farah finally tells her that her case is heresy, and what Dinah is doing scares her.

Frank is in his apartment reading and then stares at the ceiling.

Paulie, Lance, and Donny drive up to the restaurant where the poker game is, and Paulie hands Donny a gun. They put on masks and go into the game, taking out the one guard. As Donny bags the car, the others tells them that no one should be a hero. The Gnucci man Tony advises them to leave while they can, and when they ignore him he says that they're all dead. Donny grabs the money as the players stare at him, and he drops the money and scoops it back up. His wallet falls out of his pocket, and Tony sees Donny's name and says that he really screwed it up.

The next morning, Frank dreams of Maria waking him up, kissing him, and going to get breakfast. A masked man comes in and shoots Maria in the head... and Frank wakes up at 3 am. He goes back to the construction site and hammers at the wall, screaming in rage.

Lance and the others drive back to the construction site and meet with Paulie's cousin. Donny says that he brought his license in case they got stopped by the cops. Paulie beats him, figuring that he'll give them up to the cops, and prepares to shoot him. Lance stops him, saying that Donnie has to disappear, and gets the concrete mixer going. Frank sees them and watches as Donny breaks free and runs into the site. He grabs a rebar and prepares to defend himself, but they take him down and kick him, and then drag him to where they're pouring concrete into the foundation. They toss Donny in and he tries to clean out, screaming for help.

Frank steps out and tells them to shut off the mixer. When Lance goes for his gun, Frank disarms him, breaks his leg with the sledge, and beats two of them. Paulie opens fire and Frank takes cover. Lance tries to get to his gun, and Frank steps on his hand. Meanwhile, Paulie drives off but Frank comes out and shoots him in the head, and then tosses the body into the foundation. He goes back to Lance, picks up the sledge, and breaks his leg. Frank asks where it went down, and Lance gives him the location. Satisfied, Frank beats him to death with the hammer and tosses him into the foundation, and then drops a rope in so Donny can climb out. Donny hears a car drive off and discovers that the weight on the end of the rope has handwriting on it telling Donny to leave town.

At the restaurant, Toni tells his men to get all three robbers starting with Donny. The lights go out and Frank opens fire on the Gnucci thugs. They try to shoot back but Frank picks them all off except Tony. Tony finds the circuit box and turns the lights back on, and discovers that all of his men are dead. Frank twists Tony's arm around and shoots the man in the head with his own gun before walking out.

Later, a man--David "Micro" Lieberman--checks the surveillance footage of the crime scene. He spots Frank and welcomes him back.

Written by Gadfly on Nov 18, 2017

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