Welcome Geeks and Geekettes to Weird West Week!
Because of my rabid love of comic books, I think we’ll start there. Some of these series I’ve read, some I haven’t. I’ll do small reviews for the ones I have read/am reading, and at least synopsis on the rest.
Jonah’s gone through few changes over the last decade. Civil War vet turned mercenary, Jonah Hex is rough, gruff, and crude. He’s a tell-it-like-it-is, no frills, meats and potatoes kinda guy. He’s also one of the best shootists in the West. In a genius move by DC, they brought Hex into the New 52 in a comic called All-Star Western. If you haven’t picked it up, you need to. Hex has gone through the early history of Gotham City and worked with ancestors of the Wayne and Arkham family. Even did a stint with a time-traveling Booster Gold to much hilarity had by all but Jonah, of course. Currently thrown into present times and having caught the attention of Batman himself, Jonah has proved to be a long-lasting and stable fixture for DC Comics.
Caliber was a beautifully written and drawn miniseries from Radical Comics. Caliber is a retelling of the Arthurian legend set in Pacific Northwest during the times of the frontier. Instead of being a sword, the weapon in a six-shooter, only Arthur can wield it, and only Arthur can make it fire – being used in a just cause means the shootist never misses.
Two hundred years after the Salem witch trials of 1692, which resulted in the hangings of 19 women and men, Anna Williams is living an uneventful life in Essex County, Massachusetts. But there is more to Anna than meets the eye as she begins to discover her unique abilities. Anna must choose one of two paths in order to follow her true calling and Braden Cole, a hardened gunslinger looking for redemption, may be the one man who can help her along the way. From the minds behind the hit series Grimm Fairy Tales.
The Darkness has been one of my favorite comics since I was a teenager. Amazing stories and amazing artists all the way around. And High Noon is one of the top reasons I love this character. The Darkness is a power passed down from father to son, so getting to explore past wielders of this power can be a lot of fun. Ramon Estacado is an outlaw in the Wild West. Having discovered he can create his own posse, he has no use for the gang he’s been running with. And there’s where our story picks up. The Darkness can only be used at night, so when Ramon encounters his old gang, now turned into half-demons, during the afternoon, he has only his six-shooter and his wits to get him out alive!
Written by Fialkov again, the mind behind Ramon in The Darkness: High Noon, we find Enola, a half-‘injun’ sheriff – and wielder of the Witchblade, another artifact related to The Darkness; sworn enemies, in fact. Ramon makes another appearance after Enola is run out of town for being a “demon” when one of the townfolk see her use The Witchblade. Hearing how Ramon and his crew are tearing up town, Enola is compelled to save the day – and destroy The Darkness. Brilliant book!
I haven’t read this, but boy, do I want to! LOVE werewolves! Weird West Werewolves? To borrow a phrase from actor Michael Rooker, whose Twitter account I’ve been following religiously – SHITYES!
Wikipedia has this to say:
In the first series, a bounty hunter, Matthew Macgregor, investigates a series of strange happenings in the Texas town of Blest, where drought has brought famine and hardship to most of the town and surrounding ranches. Additionally, the nights are haunted by werewolves. While Macgregor, a former Pinkerton detective, seeks to uncover the town’s secrets, he tries desperately to keep secret his own past steeped in witchcraft and the supernatural. The second series finds werewolf-hunter Macgregor in Ragged Rock, Oklahoma, investigating a series of murders following a bizarre train robbery, and finds himself caught in a vendetta and confronting a technological monstrosity. In series three, Macgregor helps a young woman and finds himself amid two warring factions in the Black Hills of South Dakota.
Still on my must-read list, I’ve heard nothing but good things about this book. Check the Wiki-info:
The Sixth Gun takes place in the old west, shortly after the end of the Civil War. The story centers around a set of six pistols, each imbued with dark powers. The wielder of each pistol gains an ability unique to that weapon, and is tied to the pistol until his or her death. The guns are numbered, with the titular Sixth Gun belonging to one of the story’s protagonists: Drake Sinclair, a gunfighter with a very pragmatic outlook on the guns. The other main protagonist is Becky Montcrief. The villains of the series include recurring antagonist General Hume, the Knights of Solomon, the Sword of Abraham, and others vying for control of the guns.
A brilliant western-style story set in the Marvel Universe, this miniseries is a fun side of the Marvel U, showing a group of non-powered shootist brought together under extraordinary circumstances. Here’s what Marvel had to say about it:
“Don’t set them up if you can’t take them down!” Times may have changed since the days of the Old West, but in the war-torn South American state of San Diablo, the law of the gun still holds sway. When former hero-for-hire Maria Vasquez, alias Tarantula, finds herself wanted for murder south of the border, Texas Rangers Division lawman “Tex” Dawson is assigned to bring her in. But they’re on a collision course with the outlaw Black Riders biker gang, who plan to make sure she never makes it to trial alive… Classic Marvel gunslingers Tarantula, Tex Dawson, Black Rider, Matt Slade and the Two-Gun Kid are given a modern-day makeover in this hard-bitten tale of blood and bullets by the DAREDEVIL: REBORN team of Andy Diggle and Davide Gianfelice. Five heroes, six guns…against six hundred!
This is a fairly new series, and I’ll admit, the first time I saw the name I thought “this is totally ridiculous. No way am I readying that.” but after hearing so many people rant and rave over this comic, I had to give it a try. And yes, it’s weird as hell, but it’s really well written and very compelling. Not to mention seeped in history, as Six-Gun Gorilla was part of the foundation for the Weird West theme from the 1950s!
Here’s what ComicVine has to say:
Welcome to “the Blister” — a bizarre other-world colonized by humans sometime in the 22nd century, which quickly became a hotly-contested source of fertile land and natural resources long ago exhausted on Earth. In this new frontier, a rogue gun-slinger and his companion wander across a wilderness in the grips of a civil war, encountering lawlessness, natives, and perversions of civilization in a world at the crossroads between the past and the future. The fact that said gun-slinger is a bio-surgically modified Silverback gorilla toting a pair of enormous revolvers is neither here nor there.
Legend of Oz – The Wicked West
I love it when comics take a familiar world or characters and completely turn it on it’s ear. That’s the case when Big Dog Ink came up with Legend of Oz – The Wicked West.
Take a trip back over the rainbow to an Oz you never knew existed. Dorothy Gale slips on her ruby spurs after falling out of the sky and is sent off to follow the Yellow Brick Road to the Emerald City. The only problem is the road is gone. This volume collects the smash hit mini-series where Oz itself has been transformed into a wild west landscape. Flying monkeys and scarecrows still walk the plains of Oz, but in ways you would never have imagined. Features a foreword by L. Frank Baum’s great-great grandson, Marc Baum.
Pretty Deadly is a new comic releasing from Image comics on October 23rd. Check out this awesome article from Kelly Sue, the writer for Pretty Deadly.
KELLY SUE DECONNICK ON ‘PRETTY DEADLY’: ‘IT’S BRUTAL, BUT IT’S ALSO REALLY LOVELY’
Is your favorite Weird Western comic not listed here? Do you know of one coming out soon? Maybe an independent comic that’s just starting out? Be sure to speak up and leave us a comment either here, or on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/geekinpodcast or twitter @Geekin_Podcast
Check back for more Weird West Week! KEEP GEEKIN’!