Adrienne Fox

Pretty Deadly #4 Brings Us One Step Closer to Death

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Every word of DeConnick’s Pretty Deadly is chosen with care to craft a mythic world, profound characters, and a fantastic journey. Paired with Ríos’ art, this book will transport you to another world. One you might think you know, but truly you don’t.

See Sarah’s review of Pretty Deadly #2. I’m on Team Pretty Deadly too.

I feel this book and these characters in my bones.

Pretty Deadly #4 cover from

Pretty Deadly #4 cover from

Pretty Deadly #4
Writer: Kelly Sue DeConnick
Artist: Emma Ríos
Colorist: Jordie Bellaire
Publisher: Image Comics
Published: January 22, 2014

At the end of Pretty Deadly #3, we had a big reveal about Sissy and her origins in this tale. As #4 again opens with Bones Bunny and Butterfly telling you what’s what, DeConnick gives you the feeling that another big moment is just around the corner.

Sissy is pulled from the subsiding water by Johnny Coyote. They have a very pointed discussion about the binder that was stolen (and then stolen again), or given depending on your perspective, and why Coyote wanted her to have it. Confusion and fear overcome this young girl, and she asks Coyote what she is. (Was this a heart-braking moment for anyone else? Or was it just me?) In Death’s realm, Alice floats formless waiting for Death to give her corporeal form once more. She claims to have a new plan that will align Ginny with her in pursuit of the Ascendant. Ginny and Sarah find Fox washed ashore. Fisticuffs ensue. In the midst of taking a battering from Ginny, Fox manages to sway her from vengeance to a new task of protection. Farther down the path, Fox, Sarah and Ginny happen upon Sissy and Johnny Coyote. Fox and Sissy are united. He reassures her she is not a monster she thinks herself to be and how she saved him, and will save the world. (Again with the heartbreaking!) Alice appears in the road. Ginny says, “Tell Daddy I’m home.”

Pretty Deadly #5 is going to be an epic showdown for sure.

Ríos’ art just adds to the atmosphere and the mystery of the story. Some scenes are fast and furious, while others are light and graceful, and Rios handles it all.

I want to include in this review just how brave DeConnick is for creating Pretty Deadly at all. She could have stuck with the supes writing straight-forward, high-concept stories. She didn’t. She took a risk. She is learning on the job, and she is letting us watch. When reading, you get the feeling that this book is personal, and dear to her on many levels. She alludes to the book’s significance in the back matter, but I think it goes deeper than those words. Some of this is DeConnick at her core. I feel this book and these characters in my bones. She has crafted something special; this is her story—don’t miss it.

Recommendation: For readers who like Sandman and The Dark Tower, or who enjoy the “strong female characters” who are complex with power and emotion, not just gun-toting booth babes.

Purchase a physical copy to be mailed to you: Pretty Deadly #4

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