Story by Ed Brubaker and Art by Sean Phillips
Old time-y art, the way the sentence structure is gives me a headache. Funeral of a Mr. Raines where Nicolas meets Jo, a mysterious beautiful woman. Later Nicolas is at Dominic Raine’s home and finds a manuscript from 1957 minutes before men with guns show up. He’s saved by the broad with a gun and they speed away in her red convertible. There is a wreck and ole Nicolas has lost his leg. In the hospital he peruses the manuscript and finds a photo of a woman that looks exactly like Jo. The story flashes back to 1956 and “hank” Raines meets up with Josephine to get details on a story about the crooked and corrupt individuals of San Francisco while two men (Walt and Lannie) scope out a murder scene. Furtherinvestigation reveals the crime to be occult related and Hank can’t keep Josephine off his mind. Walter removes a card from an opium den off the murder victims and thinks to himself about his relationship with Josephine and how she stays perfect year after year and why won’t her magic work for him too? Walt runs into some trouble at the opium den and wants to strike a deal with unnamed boss. The comic itself is a weird blend of history, horror, and crime but it’s enjoyable. Everything is set up at a brisk pace and there’s no chance of losing anyone new to comics.
Sean Phillips does decent work (definitely check out his prior collaboration with Bru in Criminal) and I think he works very well with this kind of story. He draws Josephine with plenty of soft curves befitting of such a woman and I’m thankful to report that her boobs are wonderful and realistic. Hank and Nicolas looks exactly the same so I was confused for a minute but hopefully Phillips will add some more distinguishing characteristics if the story continues to swing from present to the 1950s.
I enjoyed it thoroughly. Ed Brubaker writes a damn good comic so my vote for Fatale is pick it up!