I’m beginning to notice a pattern. So far, each comic in this series has been an assignment, but along with the assignment, there is the building of a larger story. I love this formula and it works very well. This allows readers who follow the series to become invested, while at the same time making the comics accessible and enjoyable to readers who do not read each issue.
In this issue, Natasha’s assignment is to free a prisoner from an Argentinean prison. Natasha and the prisoner make their way through the South American jungle, and then there is a nice plot twist (sorry—you know I do my best to omit any spoilers from my posts).
The bigger theme is the concept of home, of belonging to a particular place. Because of her line of work, Natasha makes it a point to not “belong” to any particular place, but instead to treat wherever she is as her temporary home, allowing her to fully connect with her surroundings. There is something noble about this idea, about being detached from things that tie you down, thereby allowing you to move freely through life. But as Natasha points out, there is a down side to this philosophy.
The other edge of that is the unfortunate truth: you must first belong nowhere.
Near the end of the issue, there is a dark twist in the comic’s exploration of the idea of home.
Unfortunately, I admit, I do have a home. I have always had a home. Even if it is not apparent to me or anyone else. Home is where the hurt is.
Reading this made me consider the people who suffer and remain in abusive relationships. People will sacrifice their comfort and even their safety in order to feel the sense of belonging. Our need to be a part of a community and a home runs deep, and this sometimes results in people allowing themselves to be abused in order to satisfy this need.