No Laughing Matter…
Lady Killer 2 #1
Dark Horse Comics
On Sale: August 3, 2016
Artist, Writer, Cover Artist: Joëlle Jones
Variant Cover Issue 1: Michelle Madsen
At the opera it ain’t over ’til the fat lady sings, in Josephine Schuller’s world it ain’t over ’til there’s a hammer hanging out of that diva’s noggin’. Writer and artist Joelle Jones and Dark Horse Comics return to the swingin’ 60’s for a second round of adventures with the one woman suburban death squad known as Lady Killer. Series 2 will span 5 issues, with number 1 on sale in August.
She’s Killer-Diller When She’s Dressed to the Hilt…
It was a mad, mad, man’s world in the mid twentieth century but Josie Schuller has an interesting side job. Along with the duties of attentive housewife and mother to twin girls straight out of a Keane “big eyes” painting, she’s a one woman hit squad. Stir in a Jackie Kennedy wardrobe, a meddling mother-in-law, and a Rock Hudson hunky handler and you’ve got a spice mix that goes way beyond the Bell’s Seasoning.
Writers Joëlle Jones (Helheim) and Jamie S. Rich (It Girl and The Atomics) set the stage in the premiere issue with some “if at first you don’t succeed” mano-a-mano murder worthy of Alfred Hitchcock’s Torn Curtain. Jones is also the illustrator of the series and keeps the line work crisp and the 50’s/60’s details accurate.
This introductory issue is a hoot, a twisted but fun scenario of mid-century modern mayhem. I’m excited to follow along as the plot, and the beef gravy, thickens. Lady Killer Issue #1 (of 5) is available from Dark Horse Comics on January 7, 2015.
(Guest Editor Adriana “Andy” Melendez returns with her look at the premiere issue of a new graphic novel series.)
House of Night
On Wednesday, November 9th, Dark Horse Comics brings you the first installment in their adaptation of “House of Night,” based on the series of books penned by mother/daughter writing duo P.C. and Kristin Cast.
What It Is…
Ever since Joss Whedon gave us “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” teen angst and the supernatural have become inextricably entwined in the land of young adult fiction.
Enter Zoey Redbird, a 16-year-old, like Buffy, reluctant to answer her own calling. In a world where Vampyres (yes, spelled with a Y), Witches and Goddesses all exist, she must learn to embrace and develop her powers, all the while navigating the usual drama of school, bullies, friends, and a budding romance. However, Zoey’s school is a bit different from most; she attends a “Potter-esque” Vampyre Academy, where she must learn to hone her craft, as she begins her transformation into a “creature of the night” herself. As Joss would say, it’s another allegory for adolescence and the horrors of High School.
Been there, done that. But what sets “House of Night” apart from the others, and that which piqued my curiosity, is the way authors P.C. and Kristin Cast (joined by Kent Dalian for the graphic novel) manage to weave in elements of mysticism, mythology and lessons on spiritual growth throughout the plot. It will be interesting to see how these elements develop in further issues.
The allure of the supernatural, the idea of a realm “beyond the veil,” fascinates most of us. Of course, like the world of comic book heroes, we find that hidden world (a world beautifully illustrated by artists Joëlle Jones, Karl Kerschl and Jenny Frison) and the promise of power difficult to resist. Sadly, what I notice in popular teen fiction, is how it often discards the concept of consequences and finding balance when it comes to power. In my humble opinion, there should be more lessons on growth and spirituality and “be careful what you wish for.” I’d be curious to see if “House of Night” continues down this path.
I get what “House of Night” is going for, but never having read the books, I found the first issue, although interesting and definitely able to hook a teen audience, a bit disjointed. However, if you’re a fan of L.J. Smith’s “Vampire Diaries” or the “Secret Circle” series, as well as “Twilight,” there may be something for you here.
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