Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Writer(s): Joelle Jones, Jamie S. Rich
Artist: Joelle Jones
Release Date: 13th May, 2015
In the climactic issue of Dark Horse Comics’ Lady Killer, writer slash artist Joelle Jones ramps up the violence to stomach-churning levels as housewife assassin Josie Schuller enacts her decisive plan to beat her duplicitous employers to the punch. A worthy conclusion to what has been an utterly engaging story, this issue features some of the most shocking brutality that we’ve seen in the series so far. This isn’t the same bumbling, clumsy Josie trying to slip poison into her victim’s tea that we saw in the first issue, but rather an intensely focused alpha female doing everything in her power to project herself and her family.
Once again it’s the visuals that tie the whole story together here, with Jones’ typically stylish work adopting a more grimy, visceral approach as the stakes are raised significantly. Her ultra-distinctive ‘killer chic’ look is still firmly on display however as Josie’s showdown with her employers gets physical, with flashes of stocking tops aplenty amidst the blades, bullets and blood.
Impressively, Jones and co-writer Jamie S. Rich manage to end things here with an impressively satisfying conclusion, something of a rarity in four or five-part stories, many of which end up feeling rushed or unfinished. While they’re careful to leave things pleasingly open-ended, the pair still manage to wrap things up tidily here, meaning that if this is the last we see of Josie Schuller – and I damn well hope it isn’t – it will serve as a pretty fitting parting shot.
One of my absolute favourite titles of 2015 so far, Lady Killer has been an utterly captivating read from start to finish, both in terms of concept and execution, and has carved out a bold new ‘housewife assassin’ genre all of its own. Joelle Jones is undeniably a star on the rise, and I only hope that she decides to revisit the world of Josie Schuller sooner rather than later. Regardless, whatever she does choose to put her impressive talent to next, you can definitely count me in. An utterly unmissable series.
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The writer of this piece was: Craig Neilson (aka Ceej)
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