Jack Cross #1 - DC (2005)

Take that, Limbaugh!

Hooray! Another ongoing series by Warren Ellis.

Ellis has a fascination with people who do tough jobs and the effects those jobs have on them. The title character in Desolation Jones, Ellis's other current ongoing series, was physically and psychologically changed by his time as a spook. Jack Cross hasn't been chewed up and spit out by the system yet but he's feeling the weight of his past.

Cross is brought back into the intelligence community because his special skills are needed to break the anti-interrogation training of a fellow operative. The story is good and well written even if I could see a couple of the beats coming just before they happened. That premonition comes from reading a lot of Ellis's work. He often comes back to the same motifs but the variations on them have yet to be anything but entertaining.

My only complaint about this issue is the art. Gary Erskine does a good job with the static compositions but he doesn't convey the action scenes very well. This is too bad because the action in this issue is vital to the story. The interrogation scene, which is the centerpiece of the issue, doesn't come off with the impact it should. I don't know how much of this is the artist's decision and how much came from the script but I hope the two creators on this title come to a better understanding of how to get the shootin' and hittin' across.

However, all flaws were forgotten and forgiven once I read the last page. The images there told us more about who Jack Cross is than anything before. Erskine really captures the emotion and humanity of a man who has to do inhuman things for a greater cause.

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