Our merry murderess Josie is back and she’s ready to prove she can be just as deadly as her own boss. Is it good?
Lady Killer 2 #1 (Dark Horse Comics)
Josie and family have relocated to Cocoa Beach, Florida, and she’s struck out on her own as an independent hitman for hire, with all the complications that come with it. Not only does she now have to do her own cleaning up after her hits, she’s also dealing with the fallout from the events of the first run. Mother Schuller is terrified of her, it’s getting harder and harder to juggle home and work, and someone from her past has surfaced at the worst possible moment.
Is It Good?
I am so happy this comic has come back for more after the explosive success of the first five issue run. I somehow missed this book during its first run, so I binged the first five issues before diving into this one and I’m kicking myself that it’s taken me so long to come to it. This book feels like it’s tailor-made for my tastes: mid-century setting, a complicated lead female character, and female-creative team–what’s not to like?
Who doesn’t love a Tupperware party?
Jones doesn’t waste time keeping the story going while upping the stakes for our favorite housewife assassin. I like that we get a slice of Josie’s home life in this issue. Besides being a funny interlude in between the bloody bits, the barbecue shows off some 60’s attitudes, but also more of the relationship between Gene and Josie. That was something I’d wanted more of in the first run–besides being the norm of the times, I wanted to know what was keeping Josie so tied to her home life. I’d love to know what attracted her to Gene and deciding to settle down with him while she was an active assassin–is it to have a realistic cover or is there real affection there? It’s something I hope we get more of going forward.
And I love the addition of Josie’s inner monologue to this issue and how she tackles the new challenges put before her. She’s an amazing anti-hero–we are rooting for her to succeed, even when success means burying a hammer into an old lady’s skull.
But it’s Jones’ art that makes this book perfect. The new location of the story lets Jones explore new styles and play with the real estate of Florida in her art. Even when things are at their goriest (and she does up the gore factor in this issue), the art is absolutely gorgeous. She captures that mid-century design so perfectly, and her characters look like they could have walked off of a McCall’s pattern envelope. She also has little nods to mid-century pop culture; there are panels that remind me of Brenda Starr or Young Romance.
She brings that perfect blend of realism and comic affect beautifully to her characters’ facial expressions and body movements, and I’m never lost even during the craziest of action sequences. Her line work and little details make every panel pop. All this is made even better with Michelle Madsen’s gorgeous colors. I love how she uses different tones and hues for the various scenes and making the blood black instead of bright red gives those scenes a greater depth.
This is quickly becoming one of my favorite books and I cannot wait to see what Jones and Madsen have in store.
You can find this on comic book shelves August 2nd.