Overview

Painkiller Jane #2

Review

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Painkiller Jane #2

Credits

  • Words: Jimmy Palmiotti
  • Art: Lee Moder
  • Inks: N/A
  • Colors: Chris Garcia
  • Story Title: The Dead of Winter, Pt. 2
  • Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jun 7, 2006

How far will one family go to keep their secrets? How far will Painkiller Jane go to expose them? There could be a lot of collateral damage in this bloody clash of wills.

There has been a bit of lag time between the first and second issues of this series but the creators try to make up for it by adding layers of mystery onto the plot and delving deeper into the scarred psyche of Painkiller Jane.

After Jane’s violent action in the first issue the NYPD is on the hunt for her. Detective Maureen Fernandez harbors guilt over her role in getting Jane into this mess and now she must simultaneously help Jane finish the job and delay the police search. Meanwhile, Jane has embarked on a mission to free the victims of a sexual sadist. As the monster’s family tries to cover his crimes, Jane is more determined than ever to expose them. So what happens when the unstoppable force meets the unmovable object? Bullets and blood flies and people get hurt…maybe even dead.

Jimmy Palmiotti is arguably one of the most workman-like writers in the business today. He knows exactly what drives a plot and he knows exactly where to put the right beats of comedy, action, mystery and emotional intensity. This is precisely what the reader finds in this issue of Painkiller Jane. Wisely, Palmiotti uses this story to add more mysterious elements involving where Fernandez is getting her information on the twisted Fitzgerald family.

I will say, however, that at a couple of points I felt that the dialogue read a little awkwardly and I was not sure what mental/emotional state Palmiotti was trying to convey to the character of Fernandez. Also, a twisted dream sequence that was obviously intended to explain more of Jane’s personality seemed silly and forced. There could have been better ways of conveying the information and, in the end, there was little there that the reader did not already know about Jane.

Palmiotti’s partner in action here is artist Lee Moder. Interestingly, Moder’s work appears to have improved from the fist issue of this series. His figures are more consistent and his action sequences are cleaner.

In the end, Painkiller Jane is not a title that sets out to change the world. Like a summer blockbuster movie, the ultimate judgment is the question of "were you entertained for your money?" For me, the answer was "yes." In a summer filled with event comics and massive crossovers from the "Big Two," it is nice to be able to pick up a comic and read a story that does not try to forever change the face of the universe, or the world, or even a continent. All Painkiller Jane sets out to do is entertain with all-out action.

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