Travelling Man's Blog

Review: Pretty Deadly Volume 1 by Travelling Man

Written by Kelly Sue DeConnick

Art by Emma Rios

Colours by Jordie Bellaire

Letters by Clayton Cowles

Published by Image



Death fell in love and that’s never a good start to a story. Because Death, for all its universality is, in the end, just like us; flawed, fickle, desperate. The very things that make Death love are what can also render Death unlovable. Not that that stopped it. Nor should it.

Would it stop you?

So, Death fell in love. And Death had a daughter and that was the last good thing to happen for a long, long time.


Kelly Sue DeConnick’s story is a western, a horror, a love story and a discussion of family, story and faith, often all at the same time. It’s a remarkably complex, unflinching book that grabs you by the lapels from the first page and doesn’t let you go until the last. It also pointedly refuses to lay the jigsaw pieces out for you. Instead, it does the one thing that every reader says they want but some don’t.

It trusts you. And in trusting you it challenges you.

Rise to the occasion.

This is the most lyrical, intelligent, compassionate comic book I’ve read this year. It’s endlessly inventive, very funny and utterly brutal when called upon to be and DeConnick deals with each tone shift with the same ease as Ginny deals out violence. Death’s Daughter is as defined by violence as Pretty Deadly is but neither are controlled by it.

On the art side of things, Rios, Bellaire and Cowles are just as vital to the book’s feel and success. Rios’ fluid, expressive art style captures the imperfections and frailties of the characters just as well as the huge, sweeping vistas. Bellaire’s colour work is as feverish as it is delicate and Cowles’ lettering as just as at home punctuating Ginny’s violence as it is sweet character moments. There’s not a weak link here, not a page that doesn’t soar or a word that doesn’t hit home. Ginny never misses her mark and neither does her book. I suspect she wouldn’t have it any other way.

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[…] mentions also go to Pretty Deadly, Bitch Planet, Captain Marvel, Archer & Armstrong, Zero, Umbral and The Fuse. All of them bear […]

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