Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Before Det. Mackey & Agent Bauer there was Col. Flag

Anybody who knows me knows that I love The Shield and 24. Vic Mackey, the rough and tumble street smart L.A. detective who served and protected even when it meant breaking the law. And if that wasn't bad enough Vic had more enemies within the police department then he had on the streets and let's not even get into the problems he had with his ex-wife and kids.
Jack Bauer, when I think of that character I think of at least one person who works for the Federal government that knows how to get shit done. Tough, smart and innovative enough to even show McGuyver how it's done. Jack has taken on everything from big corporate assassins, other Federal agents, the Russian mob and of course Islamic terrorists. If I had to come up with just one word to describe these two guys it would be "intensity".
But before them came Rick Flag who to me is something of a forerunner of the Bauer and Mackey characters. I don't think I need to go into Flag's resume for you people and the similarities he shares with his TV counter parts. But I wanted to at least show how Flag shared the same intensity albeit in a more melancholy and solitary way. So I picked these three panels to illustrate. I don't have anything here of Flag shooting someone, blowing anything up or kicking some one's ass. It's just a simple conversation between Flag and Nightshade that speaks volumes about both of them. Notice how the scene is drawn to show how isolated of a person Flag is which is the one characteristic that diverges from Bauer on 24 and Mackey on The Shield. Also take note how he never makes eye contact with her or the readers where as her emotions are quite transparent to him and the readers. All and all a very intense and moving series of panels with out the benefit of any "comic book action". I mean this is a real troubled guy who defines himself by his duty which is to make sure the mission always comes first. Poor Nightshade, after all these years she still hasn't figured out Rick is the sort of guy who would rather spend an evening polishing his gun by himself then letting her polish it for a change. Looks like Rick is doing a pretty good job of keeping the "Mistress of the Night" in the dark.

Here is the tail end of the Justice League episode Task Force X. In it we see Flag at his best as he puts Deadshot in his place in every way but nice. Remember now, Deadshot is the guy who I gave examples of how he was Boba Fett, Bullseye, The Punisher and Adam Strange all roled into one just a few posting ago .

Any body out there care to throw out any opinions about who would make a good Rick Flag?


  1. He looks like a young Robert Patrick.

  2. the T 1000, not a bad choice especially since i'm sure Nightshade would agree with you that Flag's personality can be rather stiff and mechanical at times too :) the likeness isn't as good as with Patrick but i could kinda see Thomas Jane playing him as well. from a looks stand point, Howie Long would fit the bill perfectly just like how Fabio would have made a perfect THOR.

  3. You mean there is a male comic role that isn't Ryan Reynolds or Chris Evans? This world gets more radical every day...

    If age wasn't a defining factor Stephen Lang would be awesome. He did freakin amazing as the hard military leader in Avatar and that edge would make an awesome Rick Flagg.

    Down from that ... hmmmm Viggo Mortensen?

  4. Viggo would be, of course, excellent in any roll he chooses to play. But how about Nathan Fillion? Or maybe Ben Browder, from Farscape? He's good at military. Very good at wearing a uniform ;) I love that line, "Some things in life are worth more than your life." I think everyone loves that character that loves the system, loves the country, and wants more than anything to see it work. And is willing to give up everything to make it happen.

  5. Good call with Ben Browder. What about Justin Louis, Col. Everett Young from Stargate Universe. Maybe not physically imposing, but he could definitely play the military hardass role.