Review: “Pretty Deadly Vol 1: The Shriek” by Kelly Sue DeConnick

The history behind how I cam across this comic, is quite bizarre. I was looking for a comic that broke the norm were, women do most the fighting and there ton of blood, but I didn’t want it to be sexy exploitation either. And quickly I discarded a ton of stuff until I ran into this, and instantly I wanted it and bought it.

Within opening the first page I was absorbed and knew exactly what I got into it, was amazing. A western story with strange world much like Dark Tower.

This particular volume collects 1-5.

STORY: In a remote western town a young girl in vulture outfit going by the name of Sissy, tells a tale: The song of Deathface Ginny and how she came to be. However it turns out that Deathface Ginny is more than a tale as infamous bounty hunter, Big Alice, show us looking for a seal that keeps the murderous Deathface Ginny bound only to learn that Johnny Coyote, has purposely allowed Sissy to steal it. Meanwhile Sissy and her guardian a blind gunner name Fox, are enjoy and evening when Sissy accident burns the seal and yet Ginny free. Ginny quickly comes after the pair because of Fox’s dark story with her, Big Alice and Death all while Sissy caught in the middle of it.

ART: Ah, yes the art is incredibly unique and it one the first thing that drew me into this comics, from the shades of pink and red use to the wild butterfly theme and flowers. The fights scenes were unlike most comics, take cue from manga and gives a feeling of flexibility. Gunshots and wounds seem incredibly deep and painful yet surrounded by beauty unlike no other.

pretty deadly fight.png

Just and amazing fight

DIALOGUE: It mixture between allegory and good old bit cursing. Which the allegory part brings a set beautiful poems about the things that hide in the night, about the mysteries of death and the world and the cursing, well that just sweeten the deal in this raw hide world. As far the characters go, everyone from the kids who feel confuse to the adults who are hurt, feels real.

pretty deadly scene.png

Character interaction is what really propels this comic forward

Continues in: Pretty Deadly Vol 2: the Bear

Pretty deadly vol 1.png

Siting and story telling are second most powerful of this series

CONCLUSION: This is a wonderful Western comic, that reminds us that there is more to the Wild West than Indians and Cowboys. As matter fact this story makes wonder in reminded me of Bloodborne and the Dark Soul series with macabre and dark themes that populate a world, similar to ours yet distant. A world where little is told yet much is actually seeing and felt.

And about the world of Pretty Deadly, it incredibly well crafted. Today most comics run on the reader knowing a ton of backstory and exist within a pre-existing share universe, so writers have to be careful not to step on others stories. But this is not the case with Pretty Deadly, it both a gratification and solution. As any new reader can jump in and enjoy the tale.

As for the characters, they are all with clear motivations and aspiration yet their own faults, giving them very human aspect even to inhuman entities like Death and the Reapers.

I would recommend this story to anyone who is not squeamish about a little blood and sexuality, as this story contains quite a bit of it.



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