The top of Mount Everest is the dream of many of those who enjoy climbing the mountain, of those whose skin is tanned by the solar radiation that hits when reaching a certain altitude. Panini Comics He takes us with High Crimes to Nepal to wrap us in a dark plot that reveals what we carry within us.
The goddess who lives on the mountain
Climbing is a risky sport where each person fights their own battles. It does not matter if we go in a group, if you have a hand outstretched to overcome an overhang. There are many lonely moments up there, where managing to take a step forward becomes an odyssey that raises all sorts of questions. The challenge is not only physical, the war against the mountain is not fought based on strength in arms and legs, it is an epic that only a structured and powerful mind can lead to success.
The forces end above 8,000 meters, only the drive, the stubbornness, throwing the dice and against all odds reach that peak that we have set as our goal. Climbing those megalithic giants is a metaphor for life itself. A small oversight, a misfortune, an equation whose decimals are not exact and the ground can disappear under our feet. The fall is certain death, there are no barriers to protect us, our body is one more enemy. The mountain takes its toll and does so at its finest. Not all those who leave return with the mission accomplished, some cannot even count it.
The top we want to get to
Haskell Price and Suzanne Jensen have a business recovering the bodies of climbers who gave up their lives in the ascent of Everest. We could make endless diatribes about the convenience or not of their activity, about the ethics of their activity comparable to that of grave robbers, desecrators of bodies who did not manage to return. Its price for giving back to the families what remains of their loved ones is not cheap, the work to get it is not easy either. But the path that Zan Jensen has traveled to reach that point in his earthly existence is not trivial either.
Christopher Sebela plantea en High Crimes an intelligent script full of chiaroscuro. The protagonist was a prestigious snowboarder with several medals obtained in competitions such as the Olympic Games. How he got them is another matter. He did it under the influence of doping substances. She lost the right obtained by those victories but she refused to get rid of those metals to which a part of herself clings. Zan is not close to being perfect, she is a woman full of scars that she cannot close. Haunted by her past, she drowns her sorrows in drugs and alcohol, hardly succeeding in silencing her own demons.
If to all this we add a huge dose of suspense to the discovery of a corpse near the top of Everest, by Price, from which he manages to rescue, apart from organic material (a hand) to identify the body, a rather complete … we find the perfect elements for a spy story worthy of the best of the genre, without scruples, it only matters to silence the loose ends, not to leave verses that can uncover the sibylline intentions and secrets of those who control everything from the shadows .
Recreating the solitude of the ice wall
Ibrahim Moustafa’s drawing perfectly recreates the harshness and harshness that surrounds the difficulty of traversing the path strewn with traps that leads to the top of the highest mountain on Earth. It shows the edges of the soul of its protagonists, the drive and abandonment, the motivations both to keep going and to let go. We attend the visual recreation of a dangerous ascent where death can be waiting at each step, after a ledge, when crossing a glacier crevice or after a small jump. The color palette goes from gloomy to the absence of filters due to the lack of atmosphere. A slap of absolute reality, without hiding behind trompe l’oeil, stark but never vulgar.
High Crimes tells us about an attempt at redemption by more than one protagonist, by Miss Jensen but also by agent Sullivan Mars. Sometimes you can attend with conviction to a show that gets you to stir your entrails. Sebela and Moustafa succeed, although the light at the end of the tunnel is not yet visible, although the mountain does not smile back at us, although our soul is not at peace.