I’ve wanted to get my hands on Dark Horse’s Lady Killer since day one. Jumping on at the second-to-last issue, I was hoping I didn’t miss too much, fearing this limited series may have already peaked. Suffice it to say, Lady Killer #4 is second-to-last perfection, offering an awesome taste of the story and demanding that the best is yet to come.
The premise of Lady Killer is simple: Josie Schuller, a suburban housewife, has a past in espionage that she’s trying to escape, but like most jilted lovers, the business won’t leave without a fight. Writers Joëlle Jones and Jamie S. Rich pepper this tried and true plot with a delicious array of characters, both major and minor, that help paint a fun picture of the lives that are led behind closed doors.
The fun of this book is the ride enhanced by the beautiful artwork. The retro feel of Jones’ art mixed with unique and interesting page layouts offers a world where the CIA and a Tupperware party can exist in the same space. Coupled with Laura Allred’s coloring, this book looks like an issue of Good Housekeeping, save for the occasional head shot and knife fighting.
If you’ve arrived at this part of my review and have not yet sensed my excitement for this book, get ready for an ample helping. What I love is the tongue-in-cheek way Lady Killer delivers on making a “lady with a past” not only thrilling but super fun. The charm of this book is capturing how the life of the ’50s housewife may be just as challenging of a job, if not more, as that of a super spy. This book makes domesticity sexy, simply because it’s never as simple as we all assume. Josie is a strong and savvy protagonist, handling everything from fashion to carjackings with the finesse found at a finishing school. She can kill in heels and have dinner on the table by five. Let’s see James Bond try that.
Because of my failure to start this book from the first issue, the plot twist at the end of this book was not as impactful; however, the lead up to this revelation offers promise that the story has not yet reached its climax. This book coasts at a smooth pace that is inviting for someone jumping in and leaves new readers feeling confident that prior issues can be picked up without a lot of catch up needed.
Lady Killer #4 delivers on every whim one would have when the idea of a retro spy comic comes to mind. It’s a great jump into comics for anyone who loves dangerous women or fun takes on super spies trying to “make it” in the real world. This book reminds me of Marvel’s limited Black Widow run, self contained and exciting. Do yourself a favor and pick up Lady Killer #4. Better yet, pick up the whole run. No doubt I will see you there in the Dark Horse aisle, because like a Black Friday sale, I wouldn’t miss this for the world.