Okay. This comic is great because it shows a lot of ups and downs for various characters, but naturally I’m going to hone in on McCree:
(Not to ignore Sombra being there; I’m fucking thrilled Reaper’s new star student is tailing his old one).
But. Let’s just talk about Jesse. Obviously we’re getting the most hamfisted visual cue imaginable that McCree is sad. The dude’s alone in a bar on Christmas, black-out drunk. Not generally how people spend their holiday.
Fanon has collectively painted McCree as an easy-going doofus, but if you think about it he has to be one of the most miserable, down-trodden heroes in the Overwatch setting. By the age of eighteen all of his major life choices were decided for him. From his conscription to just a few years before Overwatch collapsed his entire existence was Blackwatch. In ten+ years he didn’t venture beyond that. Being a Blackwatch agent was all he ever amounted to, and it was the only good he’d ever accomplished. It was his home and his family. It was the cornerstone of his entire identity. Through it, he thought he’d made up for the mistakes of his adolescence.
Turns out that even his “redemption” was rotten. Anything positive he ever did was washed under the tidal wave of public condemnation for all the wrongs, the manipulations, and the secrets. He can’t even look back on the years he spent atoning with Overwatch and feel proud of it, because everywhere he goes the debate still is whether or not the U.N.’s peacekeeping force was ever anything but a means for the corrupt to hold power. If they’re right, what is Jesse McCree but a man who’s never done anything but fire his gun for the bad guys?
The worst part is McCree is stuck in purgatory. Responsibly, he can’t answer Winston’s recall. This new incarnation of Overwatch is going to have a hard enough time overcoming global criticism and the failures of their predecessors – failings like those of McCree himself. If they want to win back public support then they can’t afford to be taking in wanted fugitives, least of all the former protege of Gabriel Reyes. The best thing McCree can do for them is stay the fuck away. In the meantime he’s got nothing going on save for thwarting occasional robberies and the odd train rescue here and there. He’s got no one he can count on without dragging them into his troubles with the law. There’s nowhere for him to rest his head. He doesn’t even have an identity beyond a “not good, not bad” mercenary who’s simply adrift.
So here we have one Jesse McCree, drinking himself stupid on Christmas because he’s fucking lonely and he can’t go home.