Why Jack Ryan is the Action Hero We Need

Pop Culture

Why Jack Ryan is the Action Hero We Need

Illustration: Robin Chakraborty


or the better part of Jack Ryan, the TV adaptation of Tom Clancy’s popular book series, its eponymous lead is an anomaly in the universe of action heroes. Played by John Krasinski, the modern-day CIA agent is a staid, moody protagonist, poles apart from the flashiness of Ethan Hunt and Jason Bourne, the spies that cinema viewers are used to and idolise.

A far cry from the standard alpha-male action hero, Jack Ryan is a mild-mannered CIA “analyst” who rides to work on a bicycle. He is a troubled, desk-bound Everyman racking his brains over Yemeni financial transactions. Even Krasinski, the actor portraying Ryan, doesn’t inherently exude machismo the way his predecessors could — the role has been previously played by Alec Baldwin, Harrison Ford, Ben Affleck, and Chris Pine. It helps that despite his turn as an intense hero in A Quiet Place, the actor doesn’t fail to charm, and is convincing as a post-modern Jack Ryan.