Posted by Sean Gallen @seangallen
The pen is mightier than the sword but is ultimately useless in the event of a zombie apocalypse. Filmmaker, filmlover, MP staff writer.
Sean Gallen

Over the last decade we've seen #Marvel and #DC bring their entire back catalogue of superheroes to the big screen. However, even in the persistent flood of comic book adaptations, there is still a severe lack of stand-alone female superheroes: #WonderWoman had to wait patiently in the wings to get her moment in the spotlight and it looks like Black Widow will forever be just a team player.

Luckily for female crime-fighters though, #PainkillerJane is coming to the rescue! Yep, #JessicaChastain — who'll be producing and embodying the tale of the titular hero — has just announced the big-screen adaptation of #EventComics' toughest heroine, and she'll be shooting and swearing her way to a move theater near you in 2017.

Jessica Chastain in 'The Huntsmen: Winter's War' / Universal Pictures
Jessica Chastain in 'The Huntsmen: Winter's War' / Universal Pictures

Painkiller Jane is an indestructible force with a twisted sense of humor — however, despite being one of the coolest female characters in comic book history, surprisingly few people know her name. And that is why we've put together the following list comprising of five essential things you need to know about this radical firecracker.

See also:

1. Bullet-proof: How Did She Get Her Powers?

Unstoppable Jane / Dynamite
Unstoppable Jane / Dynamite

Let's start at the beginning. As an undercover agent, Jane Vasco infiltrates the Fonti Mob and gains the trust of its boss, Joey Fonti. However, all is not as it seems and, while she's busy carrying out his orders, he's plotting to blow her up — and, as bad luck would have it, he succeeds in doing so. However, Jane being Jane and comics being comics, she is miraculously revived with the help of experimental science and, as a handy reward for her efforts, develops regenerative healing powers that render her virtually invincible.

2. Jane's In Good Company

A match made in hell / Marvel
A match made in hell / Marvel

Painkiller Jane was brought (back) to life by writer Jimmy Palmiotti and animator Joe Quesada back in 1995 — the seminal duo behind some of the best characters known to comics: #Deadpool, the Punisher, Ghost Rider and Ninjak, just to name a few. So then, as it's clear she comes from a long line of tough, trash-talking anti-heroes, paired with the fact there have been numerous comic book cross-overs with said characters, there's loads of potential for interlinking the characters in the film world too!

3. Like Batman, She Is Forever Grieving The Loss Of Her Parents

Jane takes aim and gets revenge / Event comics
Jane takes aim and gets revenge / Event comics

In Jane's second incarnation, "Painkiller Jane," Event Comics added a tragic twist to her origin story. In this version, after waking up from a year-long coma (thanks to being served a lethal cocktail of drugs by the Mob), Jane finds that both her parents have died of broken hearts. So naturally, she vows to avenge their early graves. Her journey to closure is long and bloody; no one has been consumed with such a one-track-mind revenge since Liam Neeson in Taken.

4. She Can Take A Shot In The Face

[Credit: Event Comics]
[Credit: Event Comics]

It would be hard to figure out who would win in a "most pain endured" contest between Jane, Wolverine and Deadpool — but it would be fun to find out. Considering Jane's track record, she's definitely a strong contender: She has been shot in the face with a shotgun, taken an axe in the back, poisoned with chemical weapons and suffered countless blows from every tool in the arsenal. Like her peers, Jane still feels immense pain and needs time to recover but for the most part she lives by the Chumbawamba code — you couldn't keep this girl down if you tried.

5. This Isn't Her First Rodeo: Painkiller Jane's Poor TV adaptation

Check out the trailer for the painfully low-budget, Painkiller Jane TV movie:

The Sci-Fi channel has already made two attempts to adapt Jane to #TV; one CSI-inspired TV movie in 2005 and a short-lived series in 2007. The TV movie airbrushed all the essential idiosyncrasies (her wicked sense of humor, the vivid color, the whacky gore) that Painkiller Jane fans loved about the comics and turned her story into yet another police procedural. The TV show leaned more towards the comic book but still lacked the budget or the visual flair to truly capture the mischievous nature of the original comics.

Production for Painkiller Jane will begin early 2017 with a release lined up for next Christmas.

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