Samaritan: Veritas #3 (Image Comics)
And so ends another chapter in Matt Hawkin’s high stakes political thriller series.
These books have always been about give and take, so the only thing we’re sure of going in is that there won’t be a happy ending. Our hacker heroine was happy to leave the world behind right up until she discovered that the corrupt asshole she’d left the world because of had become President of the United States, creating a kleptocracy as the country went to sleep and burned around him.
Unlike reality, though, in this world, people still care about facts and she reckons that if she can expose his corruption she can smash the power base that he’s built and take down the empire of thieves he’s put in charge of what was the most powerful nation on earth. To that end she came out of retirement, secured funds, hired mercenaries, and has caused every agency in the world to try and hunt her down and kill her.
She knows she’s living on borrowed time. She knows that the assassins are going to get her, that there’s no way out and that even if she wins her life is forfeit. Thing is, corrupt people tend to think only of the con they’re running and maybe the con after that, and when you’re playing on that level you gotta see more than forest or trees.
The world is in danger of falling apart, the American dream dying for the profit of a very few, and only a white-hat hacker is capable of, if not stopping that decline, then at least slowing it down.
It’s funny, too, because this whole thing started with her and some other people robbing mega-churches while wearing Jesus masks, hoping to expose the corruption of those places and how they’ve replaced faith with zealotry. Here, she’s ready to do to save the world from its sins.
Kinda maybe sorta heavy stuff, but that’s what Matt Hawkins does these days. He does it really well, though, and Atilio Rojo’s crisp heavy line work and bright washed colors bring the story home. This – along with the stories leading up to it – are some of the finest examples of real-politick thrillers that you’ll find in the medium. If you like that sort of thing as much as I do then you should be reading this.