COLONEL BUCHINSKY

Real Name: Buchinsky (first name unrevealed; possibly Charles [See Comments])

Identity/Class: Human

Occupation: Military academy commandant; administrator of a secret military operation to stockpile cocaine

Group Membership: United States Army; an unnamed faction thereof

Affiliations: Utilized the Mechanoids

Enemies: Punisher, Spider-Man

Known Relatives: None

Aliases: None known

Base of Operations: An unnamed military academy in New York

First Appearance: Amazing Spider-Man I#331 (April 1990)

 

Powers/Abilities: None, beyond whatever military expertise earned him the rank of colonel and a role in a secret military operation (with robots)

History: Nothing is known about Colonel Buchinsky's military career; however, there may be some reason to believe that he was stationed with a stateside motor pool unit during World War II (See Comments).

        

     (BTS) - In recent years (yet prior to Amazing Spider-Man #330), a covert cell of the U.S. Army, concerned by a faltering economy, undertook a project to prepare for its failure, at which point (as Buchinsky notes) "gold would be nothing but lumps of metal."  Reasoning that "drugs will always maintain their value," this unnamed faction began to stockpile tons of cocaine in preparation for "the possibility of instituting a cocaine standard."  Buchinsky was placed in charge of the supply, which was stored at the military academy he headed and guarded by weapon-laden Mechanoids.

 

    (ASM#330-331) - The government's stockpiling efforts resulted in record amounts of cocaine being shipped from Colombia but less and less of it actually hitting the streets, and dealers and users became so desperate for a supply that they took to raiding each other. The soaring crime rate attracted the attention of both Spider-Man and the Punisher, and when both intercepted a shipment, the Punisher's ally Microchip was able to trace a drug carrier to the army and to track false requisitions and supply movements that coincided with drug shipments, leading to Buchinsky's academy.  Spider-Man and the Punisher confronted Buchinsky, who explained the operation and, under threat, directed them to the closed gymnasium where the cocaine was stored.  Confronted by the Mechanoids, Spider-Man fought off the robots while the Punisher planted explosives to destroy the drugs and the gymnasium.  As a precaution, Spider-Man evacuated the dorms via a fire alarm, but the blast was confined to the gym and no one was hurt; both he and the Punisher agreed that exposure of the operation would be too damaging to public morale.  In the aftermath, Colonel Buchinsky was retired, and taxes went up to cover "an unexpected deficit in government funds."

 

Comments: Created by David Michelinie, Erik Larsen, and Mike Machlan.

      Buchinsky is drawn to look like actor Charles Bronson (whose real surname is, in fact, Buchinsky and who served at a stateside motor pool during World War II, hence the speculation), an actor perhaps best known for his role as Paul Kersey in the five "Death Wish" movies.  That the resemblance is more than coincidence seems evident when the Punisher warns Buchinsky not to sound the alarm "---unless you've got some sort of death wish!"  Parenthetically, he follows this with an emphatic, "Well? Do you?" in imitation of Inspector "Dirty Harry" Callahan, Clint Eastwood's similarly violent role in his own series of five action films; there may be other such references in#330-331, but it'd probably take someone more familiar with such movies to catch them.

 

    In "Death Wish" (which premiered in 1974, less than a year after the Punisher's debut in Amazing Spider-Man#129, although Callahan preceded both of them in 1971's "Dirty Harry"), Kersey was an architect who turned killer vigilante after his wife was killed and their daughter raped and rendered comatose (She committed suicide in 1982's "Death Wish II."), an origin similar to the Punisher's own (which was not revealed until over a year after "Death Wish" hit the theaters), presumably explaining the move by either the writer or the artists to include Buchinsky in ASM#331 as an in-reference to the similarity between the two characters; however, unlike the Punisher, Kersey apparently had no military background, so in writing the profile it seemed more relevant to extrapolate background from the actor's life instead of the character's. (But Per Degaton point out, "As regards Paul Kersey's military background: Paul Kersey, based on a comment in the first movie, served as a conscientious objector during the Korean War or World War II, and would have only served in a MASH hospital unit.  Also, the plot of Death Wish 3 involves the death of one of Kersey's acquaintances from the war.")

 

 

 

     For those interested, the other "Death Wish" films were "Death Wish 3" (1985, as noted above), "Death Wish 4: The Crackdown" (1987), and "Death Wish V: The Face of Death" (1994, four years after Buchinsky's appearance in ASM; the Punisher's career, needless to add, continues to this day).  Kersey and the Punisher are but two faces of the killer vigilante trend that swept the entertainment industry in the 1970s and that, some might say, has not ended even now, a trend which has surely been discussed in detail on many a webpage.

 

    Per Degaton also adds, "Paul Kersey [from the Death Wish movie franchise] is based on Paul Benjamin, the main character of the novel Death Wish by Brian Garfield, as well as of a second novel by the same author called Death Sentence, which was never filmed.  In the second novel, Benjamin renounced his vigilante career after an encounter with a copycat."

 

    Finally, Per Degaton comments, "Actually, the closest antecedent for the Punisher was not a movie character, but the prose novel hero Mack Bolan, the Executioner, created by Don Pendleton in 1969.  Bolan was a top sniper in the Vietnam War who lost his family due to the Mafia-just replace that with "Maggia" for Earth-616 and there you go.  I should mention that Gerry Conway, creator of the Punisher, has confirmed the link with the Executioner (without any fear of getting Marvel sued!) in the Marvel Age Punisher Anniversary Magazine as well as an issue of Marvel Vision.  In addition, in one of the magazines that published one of the 1970's Punisher black-and-white stories, an interview with Don Pendleton appeared.  relevant link http://www.mackbolan.com/."

 

     This story may mark the only occasion in which the Punisher has ever had to restrain Spider-Man from behaving too violently, as the web-slinger, on edge about attacking an academy full of children, was so outraged that Buchinsky was "storing tons of illegal drugs, while pretending to teach kids about honor" that he was on the verge of strangling the colonel before the Punisher calmed him.

Colonel Buckinsky possible first appearance: In Spectacular Spider-Man#108 (November, 1985), a man holding a newspaper can be seen who resembles Colonel Buchinksy. The newspaper headline reads "Vigilante....". Of course, this serves as another Charles Bronson homage.
--John McDonagh

Maybe this was Earth-616's real Charles Bronson. BTW this was the 2nd part of "The Death of Jean DeWolff" storyline. A must read IMO!
--Markus Raymond

 

Profile by Ron Byrd, images provided by Chris Matterface.

 

Profile updated/edited by Kyle Sims

 

CLARIFICATIONS:
Colonel Buchinsky has no known connection to anyone else named "Buchinsky" and only the expected peripheral connection to anyone else who has held the rank of colonel in the United States Army.

 

                The Mechanoids under Buchinsky's command have no known connection to:


Mechanoids

 

These robots came in various forms and capabilities, from clawed humanoids to flying pods with rifles.  Evidently non-sentient, many were damaged by Spider-Man and the Punisher, and presumably all were destroyed when the gym/storehouse exploded.

 

--Amazing Spider-Man I#331

 

 


images: (without ads)
Amazing Spider-Man I#331, p15, pan4 (main image)
  p15, pan1 (VS Spidey)
  p17, pan5 (Mechanoids)


Other appearances:
Amazing Spider-Man I#331 (April, 1990) - David Michelinie (writer), Erik Larsen (pencils), Mike Machlan (inks), Jim Salicrup (editor)


Last updated: 06/18/03

Any Additions/Corrections? please let me know.

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