Painkiller Jane is a fictional character, a comic book heroine created by Jimmy Palmiotti and Joe Quesada for Event Comics in 1995. Originally a five-issue mini-series, the character went on to star in numerous cross-over titles with the likes of The Punisher, Vampirella, and Hellboy. Recently the series relaunched at Dynamite Entertainment with the first issue selling out.
Fictional character history
Jane Vasko begins as an undercover police officer attempting to infiltrate the Fonti Mob. After gaining the trust of mob boss Joey Fonti, she is given the assignment of passing a message on to rival gang member Adam, not realizing that an explosive device has been planted on her. As she meets her target, the explosion causes significant injuries, but Adam is uninjured. Through mysterious means, he manages to revive Jane, giving her superhuman regenerative powers in the process. Leaving her life as a police officer behind, she becomes the vigilante Painkiller Jane.
The validity of this origin is unclear, as a completely different origin has been presented in the first Painkiller Jane miniseries, and the Dynamite Comics' miniseries contain references to both versions of the characters' origin.
Powers and abilities
Jane Vasko is virtually indestructible. With Jane's exceptional recuperative abilities, minor injuries heal in seconds, and do not even slow her down; more major ones tend to take a few minutes. She has recovered from multiple gunshot wounds, explosions, chemical weapons assault, axes buried in her spine, even a shotgun blast to the face (which simply knocked her off her feet for a bit). However, the healing power does not stop the injuries from hurting, which is where her new name came from. On the offensive side, she has no real powers except being a tough woman to kill. Other than that, she is a skilled fighter and master of undefined martial arts, as well as a master marksman with her weapons of choice; a pair of handguns.
Appearances in other media
Painkiller Jane was made into a made-for-television movie and broadcast on the Sci-Fi Channel in December 2005. The film stars Emmanuelle Vaugier as the titular heroine. The film differed significantly from the comics, notably in regard to the character's origin, but was successful enough to lead to the subsequent TV series.
The Sci-Fi Channel Original Series based on the character stars Kristanna Loken as Jane Vasco. The series' pilot aired Friday, April 13, 2007. The name of the heroine in the show is more similar to the original comic name of Jane Vasko as opposed to the Jane Browning character from the television film. The series has received lukewarm reviews. On August 15, 2007 it was announced the show will not return for a second season. The final episode aired on September 21, 2007.
- 22 Brides vol.1 #1-4
- Painkiller Jane vol.1 #0-5
- Painkiller Jane vol.2 #1-3
- Painkiller Jane vol.3 #0-present
- Punisher/Painkiller Jane #1
- Painkiller Jane/Hellboy #1
- Painkiller Jane/Darkchylde#1
- Vampirella/Painkiller Jane #1
- Painkiller Jane Vs. Darkness #1
- Ash/22 Brides #1-2
- Two issues of Terminator 2: Infinity
- Sci Fi sees 'Jane' run out, August 15, 2007, The Hollywood Reporter