With The Losers, Andy Diggle and Jock forged a perfect partnership, winning an Eagle Award and a place in fans’ hearts. With Snapshot, they don’t quite replicate this storytelling alchemy.

Snapshot follows Jake Dobson, a clerk in a comic store and the seismic repercussions of his picking up a lost phone on the way to work. This innocent action leads his life down a very dark and deadly path as he becomes a hostage to forces beyond his control. The story starts very promisingly and Jock’s black and white art is an expressionistic delight, but as the layers of intrigue, mystery and conspiracy build on top of each other, the tale overreaches itself. Diggle escalates the conspiracy to grandiose levels without really giving us heroes to cheer for. Jake is interesting, but lacks the depth and emotional sophistication to engage and to stimulate the necessary empathy. He is no superspy, yet survives too many perilous situations through luck rather than guile.

There is an admirable attempt to critique a capitalist system that makes puppets of us all, but Diggle lacks enough room to do this efficiently, and Snapshot may have worked better if the ideas were allowed to developed at a leisurely speed. With the pace of twists and revelations, the narrative becomes too contrived and overly complex, undermining the power of the ideas and denying them room to breathe. Snapshot has merit and entertains but requires a little too much suspension of disbelief on the reader’s part and a little too much patience.