Josie Schuller is back in action and the struggle between her professional and home life begins to take center stage. Is It Good?
Lady Killer #2 (Dark Horse Comics)
First off, I am absolutely loving the covers Joëlle Jones and Laura Allred are putting together. They combine the class of the 1960’s with a shocking display of gore all woven together with the perfect wording to put a sick smile on your face.
Jamie S. Rich and Jones begin the story with Josie’s next job. She is all dolled up in a hot little red dress, kitten ears and even a collar with a bell dangling from it. Hugh Hefner definitely had some influence on this issue. The entire club where she is working appears to be modeled after the original Playboy clubs; the only thing missing is the gambling.
After setting the stage, Jones takes over and puts on display her detailed fight sequences. She embraces the kitty cat costume and has Josie strike up a pose fitting for Catwoman as she prowls in the cloak room like a jungle cat stalking her prey. The only fault in this setup is Josie makes no attempt at being undetected or using a more silent assassination method. Her plan of action is surprise and overwhelming force and she needs everything she can muster because her victim is a big guy.
Following the fight, Jones and Rich clear up Josie’s relationship with Peck, which in the first issue appeared to have a little romance behind it. In this issue, Peck enjoys teasing Josie and is portrayed as a womanizer making a move at the first girl he sees outside of Josie. Peck’s banter is entertaining and engaging providing excellent comedic relief after an intense fight scene.
The second half of the book takes an altogether different tone, focusing on Josie’s internal conflict balancing work and home life. The internal struggle is brought on by a meeting with the big boss, Stenholm. The dialogue between the two seems forced and at one point Josie mentions she has been working for the company for fifteen years, but Stenholm begins accusing her of letting her family life distract from her work. He even has some threatening words for her. This seems a ridiculous notion by the fact her kids are already attending school and are at least 5 or 6.
Despite the forced dialogue, the beginning of their conversation does an excellent job of characterizing Stenholm as a complete asshole. He arrives late to the agreed upon time, talks condescendingly to Josie, and stuffs his face at the same time! It is clear what kind of person Stenholm is.
Josie’s internal struggle is taken to new depths when she finds out who her new target is. Jones puts Josie in a position where anyone can relate, a restless night with thoughts constantly running through her mind.
Is It Good?
Joëlle Jones and Jamie S. Rich offer a good follow-up to their debut issue, but the second half of the book falls off with a drastic change of pace from the suspense and action of the first half. The conversation with Stenholm is too forced and unbelievable based on the backstory they give Josie. There was an issue with the first part where Jones and Rich decide to drop Josie’s attempt at a quiet assassination in favor of a drag out brawl, although Jones excels at the combat sequences and do they ever standout.