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Jack Cooper

Jack Cooper is a valuable employee, ostensibly the PR head of the HeNRI Institute, a private weapons R & D firm which was developing a battle suit based on technology using liquid metal. Public relations carries other connotations for HeNRI though and there’s much more to Jack under his thin veneer efficiency. Cooper is first seen consulting with HeNRI’s Dr. Foster in the wake of the Institute’s beta suit’s explosion during a secret military test. Tasked by Foster, Cooper enlists the the expertise of National Security Branch agent Ivy Raven to track down and bring in Julie Martin, the woman who witnessed the Moon Lake explosion. Together they begin the investigation, starting with a gruesome and mysterious crime scene. Cooper fails to maintain complete control of the situation during an interaction with Park Ranger Dillon Murphy in which he has to relate the death of Annie, Murphy’s scientist girlfriend who was killed while wearing the beta suit.

An undercurrent of tension and distrust arises when Ivy discovers during a phone update with Jack that he’s been hiding information about the Mook Lake blast from her. Suspicion continues for Ivy with more interaction with Jack as he continues to try and fail at staying on top of things as Ivy gets closer to and then locates Martin. Pressure increases on Jack after images of the Moon Lake crater surface in the national news media and he loses control over Ivy when she fails to yield to his ultimatum, thus ensuring her involvment as a free agent sympathetic to Julie.

More of Jack’s despicable nature is revealed when he visits HeNRI scientist Hong Liu in a critical care burn unit and tries to extort Liu’s computer password for pain treatment in order to get plans for a proton gun to take down Julie Martin. Later Jack coerces another HeNRI scientist to lie to the police about an incident in which he narrowly escaped an assailant who targeted him so the company isn’t drawn into the matter. Thinking a lead has brought them to Julie, Jack orders a black ops agent to strike and kill.

Issue #20 pulls back the curtain on Jack’s private life. He arrives home to find several packed bags by the front door. Todd, a friend, sits in the living room, mentioning that Ethan is waiting by the pool. We learn from their conversation that they’ve been together a number of years, and Ethan has decided to end their relationship because they’ve grown apart. Jack alludes to big problems at work. This turn of events clearly pushes Jack and as Ethan starts to leave he realizes his lover knows too much. Out of control, hurt, and angered, Jack takes a drastic step for, in his mind, national security. He clearly shows remorse, but he doesn’t let emotions get involved while ordering a cover up of his gruesome actions. That’s as much as I’ll spoil this truly shocking development.

Cooper’s last appearance is in #27 when Moore writes a fitting yet still grisly end for the character. Details will be posted later to avoid spoilers for anyone who hasn’t yet read the story.

Jack Cooper first appears in Echo #2 and is confirmed gay in #20.

All rights reserved Terry Moore.

July 15, 2021
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