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Jack Phantom

Contributed by Ronald Byrd.

Jack Phantom (real name: Jackie Kowalski, AKA Jacks) is a police detective at the Tenth Precinct of Neopolis, a city inhabited by a wide variety of superhuman beings. To date, nothing has been revealed about her origin, history, or private life. So far she has not been seen to experience any homophobia at the precinct. The only officer who seems to have any problem getting along with her is Officer Jeff Smax, who really doesn’t get along with much of anybody (and who, based on a dream he has in #6, appears to have a bit of sexual interest in her). However, she does express appreciation to another officer, Duane Bodine, a.k.a. the Dust Devil, for being her partner during a case, suggesting that others have been less than enthusiastic about doing so. She frequently works alongside another high-ranking female officer, Lt. Cathy Colby, a.k.a. the Peregrine who, although a “born-again Christian,” has demonstrated no hostility toward the lesbian Jack. Jack and the Dust Devil appear to have a level of camaraderie, and he has admitted to finding her attractive but accepts being “just friends.” Although most of Top Ten’s officers dress in costume, Jack’s attire is a body-blouse and jacket, not unlike a stylized tuxedo. To date she has appeared in every issue of Top Ten except #2 and #6 (where, as noted, she was seen in Smax’s dream). Her preferred brand of coffee is regular expresso.

Jack Phantom is not currently in a relationship and jokes that she has little luck in finding women. When Officer Robyn Slinger, a.k.a. Toybox, starts work at the Tenth Precinct, Jack invites her out for a beer and shows some friendly interest in her, only to be rebuffed by the nervous newcomer. Later, she seems attracted to pathologist Dr. Sally-Jo Jessell, a.k.a. Micromaid. She has also admitted to being attracted to Peregrine, although she knows she has no chance with the married straight woman, and at one point she makes a remark suggesting she has a crush on actress Joan Crawford.

Jack is one of the officers who captures M’rrgla Qualtz, the so-called Vigilante of Venus, an extraterrestrial heroine turned porn star who is believed to be responsible for several serial killings; is listed as the arresting officer. Once in custody, the telepathic Qualtz, for unknown reasons, transmits an image of herself and Jack as lovers, a mental violation which enrages Jack. Qualtz’s former teammates have challenged her arrest, and what role Jack Phantom will play as the case unfolds remains to be seen.

Jack Phantom can become intangible at will. In this state she can pass through solid matter and is immune to physical attack. She becomes semi-transparent when using her power and occasionally remains so in her day-to-day activities. While in this state her voice may have an unusual sound, inasmuch as her word balloons also take on a faintly faded appearance. She has been seen floating through the floor of a room to the room below, but this does not appear to indicate any actual ability to fly.

Jack Phantom first appears and is confirmed as a lesbian in Top Ten #1.

Created by Alan Moore and Gene Ha. Originally published by America’s Best Comics, an imprint of DC. Art by Gene Ha, Zander Cannon, and Alex Sinclair from Top 10 #11.

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