Wednesday, 22 May 2013

So I Read Fatale: The Devil's Business

A 250 word (or less) review of Fatale Volume 2
By Ed Brubaker and Sean Phillips, Image Comics

Fatale: The Devil’s Business continues the Lovecraftian Crime\Horror story of Nicholas Lash and femme fatale Josephine. Unlike Death Chases Me (Vol. 1), which focuses on its male protagonists, The Devils Business sets its lens on Josephine, the woman cursed with immortality, beauty, and the ability to influence the men around her at the expense of their obsession and ruin. Fatale Volume 2 finds Josephine living in reclusion during the golden age of Hollywood where a chance encounter with a wounded woman and a down-on-his-luck actor bring her to the attention of a Satanist cult of drug dealers, pimps, and a terror from her past. While The Devil’s Business still has a heroine stuck vein of crime, it's appropriately a more cinematic and less pulpy kind of Noir. The Horror elements in Volume Two, though, are as creepy, grounded, and quietly pervasive as ever. By focusing more on Josephine, The Devil’s Business really crystallizes how brilliant a concept the literalised femme fatale is: Josephine is LITERALLY a woman cursed to seduce and bring ruin to the men around her. The exploration of how this influence over men is both a horrific curse and a source of power is a fresh and nuanced approach to this character trope. Fatale: The Devil’s Business is another brilliant chapter in a creepy and arresting story. Well worth a look.

Word count: 225

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