Review: Lady Killer #1

Written by Guest Contributor: Jason DiGioia

I’m calling it right now: Lady Killer is going to be big. Here’s why you should buy this book.

While I’m usually driven by story, I was sucked into LK1 from the first panel because of Joëlle Jones’ outstanding art. Seeing main character Josie Schuller’s thumb and forefinger delicately holding a door knocker brought a smile to my face. Yes, fingers on a door knocker made me smile. You see, I already knew Schuller is a housewife-assassin, I knew it was probably her hand I was looking at, and I immediately recognized the juxtaposition of gentle, delicate knocks to gain entry to a residence where a murder is about to happen. It taught me something about the character: Josie Schuller can play it soft to get what she needs. On top of that, it’s an introduction to the two-sided nature of the character: loving housewife and assassin.  That’s storytelling with art at its finest.

Lady Killer #1 11.21.14Aside from clever art, the book is packed with 60s loveliness. Jones utilizes a vibrant retro color palette. Her fashion choices, interior design work, and eye for small details like a retro toaster or Felix the Cat clock all sculpt a working model of Josie Schuller’s life.

Thankfully, the writing is equally as strong. Jones and Jamie S. Rich give a clinic on pacing, suspense, character relationships, and good dialogue. I loved the interaction between Schuller and her assassin boss Peck, a guy with a veritable rolodex of inappropriate come-ons who, despite his desire to plug her leaks (you’ll get that when you read the book), still relies on the badassery of his lady killer. Despite the fact that she has to constantly dodge his dick, Josie clearly doesn’t want to let Peck down. It makes me wonder about their history. Did they have a fling? Something more?  And then there’s Josie’s relationship with her oblivious husband, her two kids, and her sinister, demanding, suspicious German mother-in-law. Jones and Rich have created a living, breathing, believable family.

Lady Killer #1  is an obvious buy for all the reasons I discussed and so many more. This is a dark comedy that has plenty of dark and plenty of comedy to keep you happy. I have a feeling that Josie is headed for a real challenge, and I can’t wait to see how she handles it. I also I can’t wait to see more of Jones’ art. Jump on the Lady Killer ride and don’t let go.

Score: 5/5

Writers: Joëlle Jones, Jamie S. Rich Artist: Joëlle Jones Publisher: Dark Horse Comics Price: $3.50 Release Date: 1/7/15 Format: Mini-series; Print/Digital