Sedition by Numbers Part 2

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G.I. Joe: Origins #21
Origins21 cvrRI.jpg
There was a cat that really was gone!
"Sedition by Numbers Part 2"
Publisher IDW Publishing
First published November 10, 2010
Cover date November 2010
Written by David Lapham
Art by Werther Dell'edera
Colors by Arianna Florean
Letters by Chris Mowry
Editor Andy Schmidt
Assistant editor Carlos Guzman

The Mad Monk is inducted into Colossus World Security, but needs a little persuasion to reach his true potential.

Synopsis[edit | edit source]

Michael Monk, the "Mad Monk", has been sent to train as a recruit for Colossus World Security, a private mercenary corporation known for producing the toughest soldiers on the planet (and, of course, a Cobra front). While Monk is neither dropping out or washing out, he is not excelling in any way, only following protocol exactly to the letter while causing no problems... which is exactly what Dr. Lester Horvath expected. As long as Monk does not cause trouble, his family will be cared for and his daughter will recieve first-class treatment for her Lupus; but while he effortlessly achieves everything the instructors ask of him, he makes no effort to go above and beyond, as seen when he hesitates during kill house training rather than shoot a target depicting a woman with a child. Still, Horvath is unsatisfied with Monk's effortless achievement, and so places him and his fellow trainees under the command of the brutal, abusive drill sergeant Eric Raston. Over the course of training, Raston picks on Monk, bullying him with physical violence, mockery and insults directed at his sick daughter, and with a fake letter claiming that his daughter had died and that his wife wanted a divorce — adding insult to injury by putting a picture of Hannah and a wreath of roses on the target he was tasked with shooting. Despite everything, Monk sees through Raston's deliberate baiting of him, and never gives him satisfaction.

Having ordered Raston to back off, Horvath orchestrates the murder of his colleague and former lover Dr. Westholme, who brought Monk to his attention, for knowing too much. Three months later, Monk is part of a Colossus security convoy hired to escort negotiator Mohammed Jassim Ali through Mosul, Iraq. The convoy comes under attack from insurgents, who do not want Ali's work to ease the Arab/Kurd tensions in the region; but while Monk is helping the negotiator to get to safety, Raston shoots their charge himself, having been ordered to do so by Cobra! Furious, Monk jumps on Raston, and begins punching him, only to be dragged off him by the other soldiers; in response, yelling not to question a superior, Raston beats Monk into unconsciousness. When Monk awakens two weeks later, he is met by Dr. Horvath, who explains that he has interceded on Monk's behalf — and, that even if he is reluctant to buy into the lies and hogwash, Monk will be greatly rewarded if he takes initiative and lives up to his potential.

Once he emerges from the infirmary, Monk's behavior has changed entirely, and he quickly shows how he earned the name "Mad Monk", committing incredible feats of bravery and skill, never one sustaining serious injury despite his seemingly suicidal actions. Six months in, Monk is promoted over Raston, and proceeds to give him a beating for "questioning a superior". One of the tasks that Monk is assigned is taking a target into the hills to "acquire" information from him, and to pass on a "true picture" of events to the American ambassador... but while Monk has no problem with what he surmises to be torture and passing on false information, he is frustrated with his superiors' euphemistic language and the fact that he needs to read between their lines to figure out what they want.

Horvath remains troubled by his relationship with his "one and only friend", who is continuing to demand that Horvath manipulate the system for him, his unstated threats getting harder to ignore. But just as Horvath killed Albert Lome, he believes that he can do the same to his "friend"... and so, he changes Michael Monk's recorded Lome number to a 7, sending him under his friend's command.

Featured characters[edit | edit source]

Characters in italics are shown only in flashback. (Numbers indicate order of appearance.)

Cobra and allies Others

Quotes[edit | edit source]

"Whatever you acquire is to be cleared through supervisor Franks before being given to the American ambassador. Mr. Franks will... check this information against other intelligence and give you back a true picture to deliver to the Americans. Do you have a problem with this, Monk?"
"The only problem is trying to read between your lines. If you want to pass false information to the Americans, then that's the job. I'm good at my job."

—The Colossus supervisor isn't being clear enough for Mad Monk's liking.

Notes[edit | edit source]

Continuity notes[edit | edit source]

Other notes[edit | edit source]

  • If you hadn't figured out Monk's actual Lome number last issue, it'd be hard to not guess it now, given that Horvath mentions that he has found "the one" to take his friend down.

Covers (3)[edit | edit source]