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Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

The Terminal List (Jack Carr + Amazon)

24 November 2022



Writer Jack Carr of The Terminal List (2018) does not have a Wikipedia page yet, despite being a success on Amazon Prime Video and on IMDb (rated 8,0). This new action series is mind-blowingly good. Its character (ie, James Reece) is even better than Jack Reacher by Lee Child and/or Jack Ryan by Tom Clancy.

It just cannot be a coincidence that all three initials are a “JR“: Jack Ryan (1984), Jack Reacher (1997), and now James Reece (2018). Apparently, those initials radiate endurance, stamina and strength. I had a childhood friend with those initials but he became a baker – as far as I know.

To be honest, I was a little skeptical about the excellent IMDb reviews. I assumed that the series was about American heroism / patriotism. My assumption was wrong. It’s mostly about betrayal and about revenge & retaliation. The plot even seems likely and plausible instead of farfetched.

It took me several evenings to watch the eight episodes of about one hour each. The length of each episode does not feel as a weakness. There’s an excellent and relevant mix of family & friends versus combat. The first episode is enough to get you hooked t this TV show.

The choice of Chris Pratt as lead actor is an interesting one as he is not as one-dimensional as Alan Ritchson in Reacher, the new Amazon series. The choice for (tiny) Tom Cruise had always been ridiculous given that Jack Reacher is supposed to be nearly 2 meters and some 100 kilos.

Based on Jack Carr’s bio, he clearly knows what he is talking about:

“Jack Carr led special operations teams as a Team Leader, Platoon Commander, Troop Commander and Task Unit Commander. Over his 20 years in Naval Special Warfare he transitioned from an enlisted SEAL sniper, to a junior officer leading assault and sniper teams in Iraq and Afghanistan, to a platoon commander practicing counterinsurgency in the southern Philippines, to commanding a Special Operations Task Unit in the most Iranian influenced section of southern Iraq throughout the tumultuous drawdown of U.S. Forces.”

Being all of the above and being a good writer feels too good to be true. A 2019 Bloomberg Law article confirms my suspicion: “Author of ‘Jack Carr’ Books Wants LLC Nixed Over Co-Credit Claim”. A 2022 Reddit post reveals the two names behind Jack Carr:

“The writers behind the Jack Carr name, George Petersen and Keith Wood, have the kind of insider experience that you just can’t fake. George is a former Navy SEAL who spent 20 years in Naval Special Warfare and recently completed his Executive Officer tour, retiring from active duty in July 2016. Keith Wood is an attorney, governmental relations professional, and writer who works full time as the Director of State Government Affairs for a privately held global life sciences partnership.”

A quote from a 2022 Reddit post

Given my above praise, it should come as no surprise that I’ve already ordered a few of James Carr’s next novels: True Believer (2019), Savage Son (2020), and The Devil’s Hand (2021). To be continued – or not.

The Terminal List by Amazon Prime Video
official trailer

Note: all markings (bolditalicunderlining) by LO unless in quotes or stated otherwise.


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