Writer: Brian Michael Bendis / Artist: Michael Gaydos / Marvel Comics
Note: Unlike most reviews, this one contains spoilers.
The previous issue of Jessica Jones put the series back on track, as mentioned in the Jessica Jones #5 review, and ended with an opportunity to display the genuineness of Jessica’s existential struggle by potentially betraying Carol Danvers in what would be a powerful shocker. A more middling but reasonable option would be seeing Jessica consider the decision before its rejection, showing that while she has a good heart, she did still contemplate the merit of nihilism after her encounter with a murderer faced her with it. The worst option – the downright poorest, laziest option, would be to write the double-double-cross, drawing the cliché scene of the good guy who tries to convince the audience they’re the bad guy in hope of shock value when they prove they were indeed the good guy all along. And that’s the route Jessica Jones #6 takes, making it the most disappointingly frustrating issue of the series so far.
To its credit, the scene itself was built well, the panel progression building the appropriate tension the pastiche requires. Carol’s gradual realization, Jessica’s explanation, the emotion of the betrayal – all the pieces are there, only in a cheap game no one wants to play.
In its short run, Jessica Jones has given us glimpses of potential, just enough to keep us reading in hopes that the plot will reach the caliber of its lead character, but has left us with little more than broken promises. Jessica is still likable as the misanthrope whose bad luck will never let put together a healthy life, but even her endearment as the emotionally-stunted work-in-progress hasn’t been enough to move this series closer to its potential. Our only legitimate hope, it seems now, are the occasional long-form dialogue scenes that remind us why we love this character, and have us forget, at least for a moment, why we’re not enjoying this book.
Reading Jessica Jones? Find BNP’s other reviews of the series here.