I’ve been a fan of Painkiller Jane since the 2006 limited series that was published through Dynamite. While she was created by Jimmy Palmiotti and Joe Quesada in the mid-1990s.
For me, the character and the series has always been one part Punisher, one part Wolverine and one part The Shield. Jane, with her super healing factor, works with her detective friend Maureen to do the work that the cops aren’t willing to or can’t do themselves. Maureen feeds Jane the jobs, and Jane takes care of business. The concept is pretty simple, but as usual, it’s Palmiotti’s great characterization, pacing and dialogue that make Jane stand out from other characters that came from that era of comics.
This new series at Icon is a great jumping on point, for a few reasons., First, the story in issue one introduces you to the major players and sets up a clear, action-packed storyline. Juan Santacruz and Paul Mounts handle both the action and the quieter moments with ease, and their style matches Palmiotti’s perfectly.
My favorite thing about the issue are the extras, though. Not only do you get a backup story (with art by Sam Lofti) that provides some history for Jane and Maureen, but you get a great welcome back letter from Jimmy as well as a history of the character in print from Patrick Wedge.
All in all, this comic is well worth the $3.99 cover price, and offers a great introduction for those who are new to the character. Those already familiar with Jane will be happy to see her back in action, picking up right where she left off.
4.5 out of 5 Welcome Backs