The Punisher, Nietzsche’s Superman?

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Friedrich Nietzsche, the German philosopher of the late 1800s, popularized the notion of the Übermensch. Übermensch can be roughly translated to mean superman or more precisely as overman. This mystical figure was the key to man’s next stage of development, to paraphrase Nietszche, man was a bridge between animal and Übermensch. This new individual would be born of humans but transcend the values of conventional morality with his warrior like strength. Now you may be thinking, wouldn’t Superman obviously be Nietzsche’s superman? The answer to that question would be a resounding no. While, the Man of Steel might posses powers beyond humans, but is bound to the morality of the day.

Statue of Nietzsche

A bust of Nietzsche

The Punisher, on the other hand, has no problems overcoming conventional morality. He has absolutely no remorse for the deeds he does and firmly believes he is doing what is right for the masses. While, Frank does not discount Christianity entirely, as Nietzsche did; he does have his issues with God and mentions from time to time, that he’d like to get his hands on the deity. Now, the thorny question arises does Frank’s lack of forgiveness surpass Christian morality entirely?

A statue of the Punisher

A bust of the Punisher

One must also ask one’s self does the Punisher possess strength superhuman? One could easily say no,  compared to other Marvel comic figures. However, the Punisher is a master strategist and improviser. He has the ability to use any environment, be it crack house or even tropical jungle, to his advantage. Also, his mental control is astonishing; what other non-telepathic figure can resist telepathic attacks with such ease?  What human besides the Punisher can routinely withstand tremendous injuries that make even Nick Fury flinch? Ultimately, it is up to you to decide; is the Punisher Nietzsche’s Superman?



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