Jack Ryan and Lane Mercer

September 10th. 2018

I’ve begun the Amazon Prime series, Jack Ryan. I’m hooked, but admittedly, in small doses. There’s a lot of blood and gun-fire. John Krasinski has done a wonderful job on inhabiting a well-known character and making him feel fresh (the show writers get a lot of credit for that as well.) But seeing this modern CIA and all the levels and layers of command and on-the-ground resources makes me wonder what Lane Mercer, Emmie Tesco, and Theo Marks would have to say about all this gun-play and computer savviness. Those three fictional characters came to life in the early days of the Office of Strategic Services, the WWII fore-runner of today’s CIA. Like their real counterparts, they had minimal physical training, few technical resources save Morse Code, some early camera devices, and a whole lot of code definitions. What they did have to have were sharp wits, quick reflexes, a highly-trained observation method, and a memory that could pick up and recall the smallest of details. Jack Ryan isn’t much different, just with better toys. I like that the basic human instincts for loyalty, survival, moralistic high roads, and justice, are still as critical today for creating a character one can root for, as it was back in the day when those were the key recruiting tools. Hope you enjoy this new TV show like I am, and salute those very real people who serve our country through some unconventional ways.

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