Jack Ryan: The Ben Affleck Years

Season One of Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan barely held itself together long enough to cross the finish line.  They flirted with modern day espionage, but couldn’t put aside the fakeness of woke culture long enough to create a show that felt real.  The action pieces were impressive given thier budget constraints, and the threats solid enough to overcome the fumbling attempts to portray human relationships the way you see them in the wild.

Season two fumbles the ball from the outset.  Forget the CIA anti-terror speech that features three hijabied women in the front row, the major premise of Season Two is that Argentina is a mess because of a Nationalist leader that the whole country hates who totally isn’t Trump at all nosir.  Jack has to collude with locals to ensure that the Russians don’t collude with Latino-Totally-Not-Trump and prevent the rightful president candidate – a strong woman who totally isn’t Hilary Clinton – from claiming the throne and saving Argentina by imposing strong social justice policies.

You got that right – the only way to fix a crumbling Argentina is with more Socialism.

You can’t take a tech-thriller or espionage story seriously on any front when the central premise is that divorced from reality.  I had to keep checking to see what color the sky was in this world.

But that isn’t even the show’s gravest sin.  It’s worst sin is that it is boring.

There’s no real sense of threat.  Things blow up and Jack gets attacked and there is a bad ass assasin after him for reasons.  There’s the requisite female counter-agent who clowns our hero repeatedly, naturally.  Some drama rises from the fact that Muslim James Greer is faking good health and lies about it to everyone, knowing full well it puts others at risk and – hey wait, we’re supposed to like him, right?  How can we root for a guy who does that?  It’s weird and off-putting, much like the rest of the show.

I tried.  I wanted to like it.  But it’s everything wrong with Season One dialed up to a full ten.

Skip it.  You aren’t missing anything.


About Jon Mollison

Jon Mollison was weaned at the literary knee of Tolkein, Howard, Moore, and Burroughs. He spent decades wandering in the wilderness of modern genre fiction, wondering when the magic and wonder went out of the world of dragons and space ships. In his darkest hour, he encountered a wise man who handed him the open secrets to crafting works that emulate the stories of the great authors who built the genre. They are easily summarized in but two words: Regress Harder. Now one of the twelve champions of the Pulp Revolution, his self-published works represent a more direct lineage to the tales of action, mystery, romance, virtue, and pure unalloyed adventure than the bland imitations churned out by New York City publishing houses in recent decades.
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