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Bad Luck Chuck #1 Review: Her Luck is so Bad it’s Good!

Bad Luck Chuck: Written by Lela Gwenn, Art by Matthew Dow Smith, Color by Kelly Fitzpatrick, Lettering by Frank Cvetkovic


Cursed at birth with extraordinary bad luck, Charlene “Chuck” Manchester provides disaster where someone else can profit.

Got a failing business? For a price Chuck will make sure you collect on that insurance policy, without ever getting your own hands dirty. But when a crime boss hires her to take out an evangelical cult, things don’t go as planned. Now the mob boss, the cult leader, and a dogged insurance-fraud investigator all come for her at once.

Everything that could go wrong does–and only about half of it by accident. A dangerous liaison with the crime boss’s daughter ups the stakes fatally for Chuck, as the curse she’s run from her whole life finally catches up to her.

Lela Gwenn brings a fresh voice to comics with this twisty noir, full of outlaws who aren’t so much wise guys as they are smart asses. Matthew Dow Smith, best known for a long run on IDW’s X-Files, brings that weird detective vibe, placing the oddball villains and anti-heroes in a grounded world taking us from the bad side of town, through shadowy office spaces reminiscent of Sam Spade, to a fiery revival tent and the splendor of a Tibetan abbey.

Chuck will need more than a rabbit’s foot to get through this.

Thanks to Dark Horse Comics for providing a copy of Bad Luck Chuck #1 for review!

The idea of a person selling their bad luck for profit is kind of hilarious to me, and immediately made me want to read this book. The premise has a very Jessica Jones vibe, where Chuck just sits around the office waiting for jobs to come her way. After seeing just how bad things tend to get around Chuck, it’s a wonder any of the buildings across the 14 different cities she’s lived in are still standing!

It’s clear after just a few moments with Chuck that her main concern is money. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that she has no contact with family or close friends due to her extreme bad luck. I’m curious to see if the book will expand on that at all, or attempt to explain her gift/curse as some for of preternatural ability. It also makes me wonder if she could find anyone else with a similar gift.

This introductory issue does a great job of introducing key characters, while focusing primarily on Chuck herself. There is not a ton of plot presented here, but I would certainly read a few more issues to see what direction the plot takes. I’m still very intrigued by the set up for this world, and the hijinks that Chuck’s bad luck will cause. I think this story will raise some interesting questions, and do it in a lighthearted and fun-filled manner.

Bad Luck Chuck #1 will be available on March 27th.

You can follow me on Twitter @SamanthaMaybe and Instagram at sammaybereading for some of my other reviews.

Samantha Maybe
Samantha Maybehttps://www.theconventioncollective.com
Sam is a San Diego transplant and SDCC attendee of 5+ years. Recently, she rediscovered a love for reading prose, and loves staying plugged into the comics world through The Convention Collective, and the SDCC graphic novel book club. You can find more of her bookish thoughts on Instagram @Sammaybereading.

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