Born in New York City to immigrant butchers, Frank Castle enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corps after the events of 9/11. Castle was decorated with numerous medals for his active service in both Iraq and Afghanistan, including the Purple Heart which was awarded after he and fellow Marine Corpsman and future spouse Maria Walls were the only deemed survivors of the campaign's deadliest firefight. The two married in a field hospital in the aftermath.
With his tour ending and his new spouse giving birth to children to support, Castle took a lucrative offer as a member of coffee magnate, billionaire industrialist, and weapons' manufacturer Tony Stark's PMC, War Machine. During his service, Castle gained a dubious and notorious reputation as a bloody hired gun for his involvement in destructive skirmishes both domestic and abroad and was often put in conflict with S.H.I.E.L.D..
After ending his service to Stark, Frank returned home and joined the NYPD after having his first child, but became an aggressive workaholic and detached on the streets out of frustration over the docility of his domestic life. Castle soon became known for his excessive violence and proclivity for treating suspects like enemy soldiers, building a near-mythic reputation among the NYPD and NYC Organized Crime Syndicate as "The Punisher". Castle's notoriety reached its peak when he took down the "Fancy Dan Gang" and was promoted to Captain soon after the birth of his second child. Soon after his wife decided to take their children and leave him due to Castle's lack of involvement in their lives and obsession with violence, Frank took the job to replace George Stacy as the Captain of the Special Crimes Task Force, after Stacy was relieved of command by the Mayor.
Castle was later seen brutally interrogating an arrested Aleksei Sytsevich for information regarding Spider-Woman and who ordered him to kill George Stacy. Aleksei eventually revealed it was the Kingpin. Castle later interrogated Wilson Fisk while he was serving his solitary confinement sentence in prison, who denied having ordered the hit on Stacy or any connections to Spider-Woman, much to Castle's chagrin. Castle later ignored Stacy's advice to reconnect with his family and swore to hunt down the criminals under his watch.
After Spider-Woman was attacked by The Vulture, Castle confronted a dazed Spider-Woman and engaged her in single combat. Castle struggled against Spider-Woman but overpowered her, before being surprised to learn she was just a young girl beneath the mask. During the confusion, Castle was knocked unconscious and greatly injured by Spider-Woman, now revealed as Gwen Stacy. Frank returned to the police precinct demanding the other officers return to work while covered in bandages much to the amazement of those present. Frank continued his investigation to find the link between Spider-Woman, the Kingpin, and Captain Stacy before being attacked by ninjas of the Hand as ordered by the new Kingpin. Suspecting a connection, Castle began stalking the Stacys, determined to find the truth and confronted Gwen, accusing her of being Spider-Woman and tried to arrest her forcefully. Gwen managed to knock Castle unconscious using her Radioactive Spider Isotopes, causing Castle to enlist the help of former PMC comrade Kraven the Hunter in hunting Spider-Woman. Castle nearly captured proof of Spider-Woman's identity on camera with Kraven's help, but was stopped by George Stacy who knocked him unconscious and destroyed his evidence. With Kraven's help, Castle managed to obtain a Spider-Isotope and attempted to use it to blackmail CEO Norman Osborn into helping him capture Spider-Woman in exchange for clearing his son's criminal reputation. Castle was confronted by Detective DeWolff who pleaded that Castle stop his obsessive crusade, but was rebuffed.
Castle later confronted Spider-Woman again armed with a special gauntlet, frantically attacking her while putting many bystanders in danger and destroying nearby buildings. Castle was temporarily stopped by George Stacy before managing to trap both Stacys, but was stopped again by the timely arrival of Detective DeWolff who admonished Castle for taking his pursuit of criminal justice to unacceptable extremes. Castle rebuffed DeWolff again and tried to shoot the Stacys, but ran out of ammunition and fled, becoming a fugitive of the law and criminal in his own right.
Cop Turned Vigilante
Castle went into hiding as a vigilante still hunting for Spider-Woman, before appearing again while Spider-Woman was overtaken by the Venom Symbiote and hunting the Rhino. Castle managed to stun Spider-Woman and separate her from the symbiote with a sonic baton before deciding to kill the Rhino himself. Castle later appeared again wishing to appeal to the venomized Spider-Woman for a chance of partnership in finally taking down the Kingpin, seeing him as the source of their troubles, and gave her a cellphone to call him on the chance she decides to accept his proposal. Castle later went on a rampage in his pursuit of Matt Murdock, slaughtering his Hand minions in attempt to slay the Kingpin of Crime once and for all. Castle made his way into Murdock's stronghold before ascending to the rooftop, confronting Murdock and Spider-Woman there. Castle admonished Spider-Woman for saving Murdock from his clutches before being confronted by Captain America, who brutally beat Castle into unconsciousness before later taking him into custody as a prisoner of S.H.I.E.L.D..
- 15 appearance(s) of Frank Castle (Earth-65)
- 4 minor appearance(s) of Frank Castle (Earth-65)
- 10 mention(s) of Frank Castle (Earth-65)
- 2 mention(s) in handbook(s) of Frank Castle (Earth-65)
- 10 image(s) of Frank Castle (Earth-65)
- 1 quotation(s) by or about Frank Castle (Earth-65)