Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The main problem with the Jonah Hex movie storyline

It's all right there for everyone to see, right there on the poster in the tagline "Revenge Gets Ugly!" Let me elaborate by examining the characters in the movie vs the characters in the book. Blue is the book, Purple is the movie. First up:

Quentin Turnbull:
  • Book: Plantation Owner
  • Movie: Former Confederate Commander
  • Was father to friend of Jonah Hex
  • Was Commanding officer of Jonah Hex
  • Son died while escaping Union fort, Jonah Hex blamed
  • Son shot by Jonah Hex
  • Prominent man in politics and business for years after war 
  • Faked death in a hotel fire

Jonah Hex:
  • Served in Confederacy and surrendered to the Union
  • Served in Confederacy and went against direct orders of commanding officer
  • Scarred by Indians after perceived violation of tribal rule
  • Scarred by Quentin Turnbull for killing Jeb and then scars self to cover the original branding
  • Years after being a bounty hunter marries Mei Ling, a Chinese woman
  • Shortly after war and prior to being bounty hunter, marries and Indian woman
  • Has a son named Jason
  • Has a son named Travis
  • Mei Ling takes Jason and leaves Jonah
  • Wife and Travis murdered by Turnbull as Jonah watches.
  • Expert marksman
  • Can talk to the dead
  • Spent time with the Apache
  • Saved by the Crow
Revenge as a motive:
  • Quentin Turnbull has vowed to make Jonah pay dearly for the death of Jeb Turnbull
  • Jonah Hex has vowed to make Quentin Turnbull pay dearly for the death of his wife and son
THAT is main problem with the storyline in this film. This movie does not contain Quentin Turnbull, it doesn't contain Jonah Hex. It contains two people that may resemble the characters, but the entire history and motivation of the characters is wrong and inverted. Jonah Hex is a man who has been beaten on by life, has found a narrow ledge of society to walk on but he wants to be left alone. Turnbull is a man deeply ingrained in politics and society and he wants Jonah Hex dead...at least in the books.

In the movie, Turnbull is thought dead, is working outside the bounds of normal society and is trying to destroy the country. Hex appears to have no problems working as a bounty hunter, is vaguely sought after for 'killing' some 'lawmen' but has spent time trying to get his revenge on Turnbull.

The film is not about Jonah Hex, it uses the name as a lame attempt to cash in. The film revealed this when we learned who Tallulah Black was, a hooker (she wasn't), a beautiful woman with flawless skin (she was scarred). We got Tallulah Black in name only. We got a Jonah Hex film in name only.

I'm still waiting for a Jonah Hex film.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Jonah Hex - DVD & Blu-Ray review

Well, I dropped the big bucks and picked up the DVD Blu-Ray digital copy version of Jonah Hex and I watched it and the special features. Let's take a look at it together, shall we?

Since the special features are only available on the Blu-Ray, a lot of folks won't be seeing them but I'll try to recap what little you're missing. First up, the deleted scenes, all three of them. We get to see a very rough scene of Jonah at night walking into a cemetery in the French Quarter, rough CGI crows following along with him. A weird Cajun funeral procession meets Jonah and a young Black boy with no pupils sits up in the casket and points across the graveyard. Jonah heads the direction the boy pointed.

Second scene is Jonah riding along, another rider on a horse following him, the rider is obviously dead. Lt. Evan and several soldiers appear to take Jonah to Grass. Jonah states that they should at least bury his partner first. Evan gets a puzzled look on his face and Jonah turns to find the horse and the dead rider are gone. Evan offers him a drink, Hex takes it, spilling quite a bit through his cheek and he sorta growls (this was seen in the trailer after Fox asks him "Can you?")

Next we have a scene on a stagecoach with Lilah and Doc Williams. Remember Doc Williams? He was the guy that had one line in the fight tent (not the guy Hex was talking to). Anyway, this takes place after the tent burns down and it is basically Williams being creepy and Lilah being bored.

The next special feature is the history of Jonah Hex comprised of talking points from Dan Didio, Jimmy Palmiotti, Justin Gray, Tim Truman, John Landsdale and Tony DeZuniga (wearing the worst wig I have ever seen in my life!). It was good to hear Jimmy and Justin talk about Hex, Tony was fantastic to watch, Didio? meh. Landsdale? Dear lord in heaven, I wanted to punch the man in the face. On camera he confesses that his stories were based on a faulty memory that he had of the character. Joe thought that Hex always had heavy supernatural elements so he wanted to recreate that. So DC decides to publish stories based on a bad memory? ARRRRGHHHH. I almost laughed as some of the folks talk about the wide range of writers and the several incarnations that there has been of Hex. Hmm, Writers? How about FOUR (counting J&J as one)! Incarnations? Three!! Superman has gone through more. Firestorm has gone through more!!!

And, of course, there is no mention whatsoever of Michael Fleisher, the man who wrote more Jonah Hex stories than everyone else combined!!! I can see why I wasn't contacted to be in the special features, I would have probably gone ballistic halfway through any interview. (hmmmm, I might have to shoot my OWN interview. Hmmmmm)

The last special feature is one that runs alongside the movie as a picture in a picture and it talks about how they shot various scenes, built sets, did special effects. I haven't watched the whole thing with this feature but it is fairly interesting so far (I have gotten up to the train explosion).

Tomorrow, I'll cover what I think is the main travesty of the whole Jonah Hex movie.

Friday, October 15, 2010

My visit to Jonah's grave

A few weeks ago my Lovely Wife and I went with some friends up to Guthrie, Oklahoma. Guthrie, among other things, was the first capitol of Oklahoma, has the largest urban historic district in the United States, and was hosting an art festival. We wandered about, looking at art when I suddenly remembered something.

Elmer McCurdy. I quickly asked a local where the grave of Elmer McCurdy was and they gave me exact directions to the graveyard. We had to do a little searching, but we found it.  While wikipedia states it's in the NE corner of the graveyard, it's more in the North center of the graveyard. But now I had to explain to our companions who Elmer was.
Here is a nice overview from FindaGrave.com
A notorious outlaw in the early 20th century, who's events in death have become more famous then anything he did in life. He was born in 1880 to an unwed teenage mother whose family gave infant Elmer to her brother George and his wife to raise. He was later told the news which he did not take well. He began to drink heavily and eventually ran away. He tried several jobs working as a plumber and a miner and even tried to enlist to go in Theodore Roosevelt's occupation of The Philippines. McCurdy missed the expiration dated and didn't get to go. His tour of duty in the Army lasted only three years. After leaving the Army, McCurdy had no luck finding work and tried making his fortune as a robber. He and friend Walter Shapelrock were arrested for possession of tools used for burglary. Awaiting trial he met a man named Walter Jarrett. After being found not guilty, McCurdy was released and met up with Jarrett. Jarrett gave McCurdy the nickname "Missouri McCurdy. The two were not very successful as bank robbers, often blowing up the money with the nitroglycerin used to blast open the safe. In 1911, the two tried to to steal the safe from a Kansas train. The safe contained only a few dollars so taking their meager shipment, the gang headed into Oklahoma where McCurdy would meet his match. On October 8th, drunk and in need of rest, he fell asleep in a barn and later awoke to find that a small posse had tracked him down. Holing himself inside the barn he shot it out with the posse for better then an hour. When the shooting stopped, McCurdy was dead at the age of 31. No family or friends came to claim the body and the undertaker refused to give the body to the sideshow carnies who asked to have it for display. Sometime later two con men (one claiming to be his brother) showed up and claimed it and took it back to California where they encased it in painted wax. McCurdy was an outlaw doomed to fade into historical obscurity until his story took a bizarre twist some 65 years later. In 1976, a film crew went to Nu Pike Amusement Park in Long Beach, California to film an episode of The Six Million Dollar Man. One of the technicians came across a wax dummy hanging from a rope. Trying to move it, the arm came off and sticking out of the wax was a bone. The dummy was taken to a forensics laboratory for an autopsy but it was so petrified that the doctors had to use a hacksaw to get through it. They learned that this was in fact the body of Elmer McCurdy and that he had died of a .32 caliber gunshot wound. He was soon after buried in a formal ceremony and cement covered the coffin of a man who's body had made a 65 year journey to the grave. (Bio by S. Mason) (bio by: Savannah Mason) 

But now I had to explain WHY I wanted to see this. For that I had to explain the Jonah Hex Spectacular  from some time back and the Secret Origins issue from yesterday. My friends are way too patient with me.

So we wandered the graveyard for a little bit, paid our respects to Elmer and also to this headstone:

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Secret Origins #21 "The Secret Origin of Jonah Hex"

Secret Origins #21 Dec 1987
"The Secret Origin of Jonah Hex"
Michael Fleisher, story - Gray Morrow, art - Jose Luis Garcia Lopez, cover

Secret Origins was a great book back in the 80's. DC decided to have this book, giving space to one Golden age character and newer character, often with an artist that either originally drew the character or could mimic the style of the original artist. The Golden age character stories was almost always written by Roy Thomas and the newer character stories was penned by the ongoing writer or the writer who was handling the reigns on the relaunch.

Usually the newer character was involved in a new book, so it is somewhat odd that Jonah Hex, just canceled that year, lands a spot in Secret Origins. I picked it up because I'm a fan. I already knew about Jonah's Secret Origin. Heck, I even knew about his OTHER Secret Origin. So what was I going to learn in this story? Well, a little something, so hang on.

We start off in the Frontier City Amusement Park in Laramie, Wyoming. There is a Frontier City Amusement Park in Oklahoma City, but I get that wasn't Wild Westy enough, but I'll cover that a little bit more in a later post. Anyway, we see a scantily clad young woman running through the park at night being chased by two gun-wielding thugs. She shouts for help, rounds a corner and the heel of her shoe breaks off, throwing her into a nearby cowboy statue. We hear a director shout "CUT!" and we realize that we are witness to the making of a low budget movie. As they set up for the scene it is discovered that the statue that was knocked over was not a statue, but a stuffed corpse.

An unknown time later, at Princeton University a Prof Lawrence is talking with a Mr. Kastner over the phone. Lawrence states that, according to the description and the photos Kastner sent, the corpse must be that of Jonah Hex. Kastner explains that the statue was purchased with a lot of other stuff when West World Amusement Park in NY went out of business. Lawrence asks if Kastner has plans to display the corpse but Kastner explains there is a fly in the ointment.

Frontier City had the corpse repaired and Kastner (we assume he with a museum) want to buy it, but there is an old Cheyenne woman who has an injunction on the sale. She states she is Jonah's common law wife and wants the body for a Cheyenne burial. Lawrence is on a plain to Wyoming asap.

Meanwhile, in Lombard, Illinois, we meet a Mr. Lewellyn, a collector of American Frontier Memorabilia. He is showing two of his thugs around his collection. He has Wyatt Earp's Buntline,, the poker hand held by Wild Bill Hickok when he was shot, the tomahawk of Scalphunter, the table from the saloon where Jonah was shot, Hex's glasses, George Barrow's shotgun, even Mei Ling's wedding dress. BUT he is wanting the stuffed corpse of Jonah Hex. He even has a glass case ready for it and he tells his thugs to do anything in order to obtain it.

At the Gray Eagle Indian Reservation in Wyoming, Lawrence pulls up in a Land Rover in front of a bunch of tipis. He thinks that he never imagined that Tall Bird would still be alive, let alone survive the fire set by Lew Farnham. He enters a tipi and meets Tall Bird. As he pushes the elderly Tall Bird around in a wheelchair, Lawrence states that she has answered every question he has poses, so there is no doubt as to her identity, but Lawrence asks another question: What happened to Jonah in the town of Red Dog in 1875 when he literally vanished from sight?

Tall Bird states that Jonah did speak of it once, "that he had been vouchsafed a visit to a strange new world" and they would never speak of it again. Lawrence asks about Jonah's son, Jason. Her answer? "He told me about Jason. But his is a tale so fraught with horror that I have vowed to carry it within me, in secret, to the end of my days."

The Prof then asks what drove Jonah to be a bounty hunter. The story Tall Bird relates:

The drunken Woodson Hex gives Jonah a rifle for his birthday, something very uncharacteristic of the abusive bastard. Jonah is probably, oh, TEN? (well, we don't know, but it IS before his mother leaves.) We see a joyous Jonah running around the farm shooting bottles, sticks, scarecrows and the like. That night, Ginny comes home from a day in town. The buckboard broke down and she had to get it fixed. Woodson accuses her of hanky panky and starts slapping her around. He breaks a bottle and threatens her with it.

Young Jonah awakens to the disturbance, grabs the rifle and confronts his father only to get the crap slapped out of him and knocked to the ground.

Tall Bird stops there and says that she will finish the story in the place where they found Jonah, the amusement park. Lawrence takes her back home and heads for his hotel. When he steps into his room, he is attacked by Lewellyn's thugs and told to have Tall Bird sign over the corpse to them.

The next day at Frontier City, Tall Bird retells Hex #7 and #8 in three quick panels and Jonah fell into drunkeness and loose women. One night as he was staggering down the street, he sees a large man beating a young woman. Jonah hallucinates, thinking that it is his father and he draws on the man and shoots him dead. The sheriff shows up and states that Jonah just killed Lucas McGill, a wanted murderer and hands the sizeable reward over to Jonah. Jonah looks at it in a puzzled way, drops it to the ground and rides off.

Back in Frontier City, Lewellyn and his thugs step forward and demand that Tall Bird sign the papers. She, sitting in the shadow of her dead husband, refuses. Lewellyn pulls a gun and states that he will have his way no matter what. Suddenly a shot rings out and Lewellyn drops to the ground. Lawrence grabs the dropped pistol and demands that the thugs drop their weapons.

Later, we see the police carting off the thugs and the body of Lewellyn. Lawrence and Tall Bird have to go to the police station to give their statements but as they leave, Lawrence turns to Jonah Hex and says that by tomorrow, they will have Jonah out of there. The police drive off, leaving the stuffed corpse of the greatest bounty hunter standing alone.

Statistics for the Issue
Men Killed by Jonah Hex - Well, McGill and dare I say, Lewellyn? There was nobody else to shoot him. So how about two?
Running Total - 485 (430 past, 55 future)
Jonah's Injuries - none
Timeline - Supposedly this takes place in 1987 and probably spans about a week.

This really isn't a SECRET origin. We only get five pages of info on Jonah's past that we didn't have before and only two of those as an adult. Pretty lame stuff all around. We do get to see Tall Bird, a verification that the HEX series is considered canon, a hint at the horrible end of Jason (not yet seen), but we never see what happens to Jonah's corpse. That is left hanging there, begging for answers.

If Tall Bird gets custody and burns the corpse, how can Jonah see it in the future? If it ends up in a museum, how can it be 'collected' with amusement park junk in the future so Jonah can see it? This issue raises many more questions than it answers and at times I think it would be better if it hadn't been written. The artwork by Gray Morrow, once again too full of Ziptone, too murky, too stiff, too 1950's, too YAWN!!!

Next post, will tie up this story and the Death of a Bounty Hunter into a nice little package. I have mentioned this item before, but it is worth repeating. After that, we'll visit some more of the guest appearances of Jonah Hex and then we dive headlong into the world of VERTIGO. (Don't say I never did anything for you guys, okay?!?!?)

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Hex #18 "Thanksgiving"

Hex #18 Feb 1987
Michael Fleisher, story - Keith Giffen and Carlos Garzon, art and cover

An undisclosed amount of time after last issue, we find Jonah Hex and Stiletta on their motorcycle, plowing across a snow-covered countryside. Stiletta mentions that Mookie and Vance are cooking up a good Thanksgiving dinner, so she hopes Jonah is hungry. Jonah think it's odd that she can find anything to be thankful for in the sinkhole that the future is.

Just then a shot rings out, knocking Jonah off the bike and throwing Stiletta into a snowbank as the bike crashes. It appears that there are some structures around and Jonah takes cover behind one of them. Stiletta makes her way to Jonah's side, dodging the ongoing gunfire as she does.  She looks at Jonah's injury (we don't because Keith Giffen obviously hadn't drawn his way out of the wet paper bag yet to be able to show us anything understandable) and Jonah states that there is no way he can ride the bike to safety.  He tells Stiletta that she will have to go get help and reluctantly she takes off on foot.

Jonah starts looking for a place to hide and smashes in a basement window and crawls down inside the basement. We then see that there are three gunmen who are looking for Hex. They find blood drops in the snow and follow them to the broken window. They crawl down into the darkness and then they notice the smell...and the fuel hose coming in from the window. As the truth dawns on them, Jonah, who is now outside, tosses his lit cigar into the window, blasting the three gunmen right up to God's front door.

Jonah collapses into the snow, bleeding as heavily as ever and his mind races back into the past. Jonah is ten years old and is forced into a boy fight by his father. We see Jonah getting pummeled all because his father wanted to use the prize money for whiskey.

A loud pounding brings Jonah back into the present and he sees that six more gunmen have shown up, looking for the first three. Jonah makes tracks for another building as the new guys locate the remains of their comrades. They also see the blood spatters being left by Jonah and start searching. Jonah, in his hiding place has another flashback, this time to when he found a small raccoon and kept it as a pet. Back in the present, the thugs split up and one of them checks the shed that Jonah is in. as he pokes around in the dark, Jonah steps out of the shadows and slides a knife through his ribs.

The dying thug makes the smallest of sounds, but his buddies hear just enough to head to the shed to investigate. They bust down the door and find their dead friend. They see a hole in the wall and assume that Jonah has headed out that way and give chase. Jonah, however, is still in the shed and slowly slips into another recollection, this time about Thanksgiving dinner where Jonah and family, unbeknown to one of them, consumed the family pet raccoon. This leads to a fight between Jonah and Woodson, with Papa Hex using the Backhand-Beltstrap Combo that was outlawed in Street Fighter 7.

Jonah comes back to his present troubles, bleeding still, and tries to move from his hiding spot, only to stagger and collapse once again. Shortly thereafter, the gunmen, realizing that they can't find Hex and decide to doubleback. They find him on the floor of the shed and prod his body with their foot. A pistol pops up in Jonah's hand and two gunmen show up early for their appointment with St. Peter of Pearly Gate fame.

A third gunman gets his act together, draws his weapon and Jonah barely whispers "Better hang it up while you're still ahead, right?" The gunman turns to see Stiletta and a small army getting ready to use the remaining gunmen as target practice. The gunmen drop their weapons as Vance, the doctor rushes forward to tend to Jonah. They quickly get Jonah back to Vance's place.

Vance's place is a huge warehouse, location unknown and we next see Jonah is some sort of hoverchair, not as cool as Metron's but a step up from Niles Caulder. He is in a healing body stocking that not only monitors vitals be released meds in appropriate doses. Vance explains that all Jonah has to do is think and the chair will go where he wants to go. It seems that Mookie, Vance's wife, collects amusement park antiques, several of them from the early 20th century. Jonah's chair goes gliding through the collection as Jonah sees 'antiques' that are completely new to him.

Past the bumper cars and merry-go-round horses Jonah finally comes across...

He thinks that someone had made a statue of him after he got old but then he realizes that it isn't a statue, but a stuffed human. He recognizes his own dragoons and sits in silence, staring at his own corpse. Finally, one thought travels through his mind "Ah guess it means ah'll be goin' back home one day... after all."

The issue closes with Stiletta finding Jonah sitting in the dark.

Statistics for this Issue
Men Killed by Jonah - 5
Running Total - 483 (428 past, 55 future)
Jonah's Injuries - Apparently gutshot and almost bled out.
Timeline - There is no way to determine how much time passed between last issue and this, but it appears that this issue takes place in only one day.

And this is how it ends. The incredibly sad horrific life of a scarred man, far from home and unable to return, is brought to some sort of circle where the end turns back onto the middle. It makes me wonder what Jonah's viewpoint was after that. Did he have a concept that every day could be his last, once he returned to his present, and he was more cautious? Did he think that he had nothing to fear in the future and became even more reckless there? And as postulated elsewhere, (By Ms. Hillwig, I believe) what went through Jonah's mind in 1904 when Lew Farnham held up that exact same cowboy suit for Jonah to see, almost like the Death itself grabbing you by the shoulder and spinning you around?

All in all, a so-so issue. Giffen's artwork was actually helped by the addition of white space between the frames, but in some places the weird angles, overuse of ziptone, and using color to provide artistic detail rendered the work on par with Bobo the Incredible Painting Monkey (Ya know, the monkey with a glass eye and a hook for a hand whose other arm got mangled in that automatic banana peeler accident that the zoo tried to cover up. Yeah, THAT monkey). In the flashbacks, Fleisher got some of his own details wrong as if he were working from memory, much like Jonah, but unlike Jonah, I don't think Fleisher was suffering from blood loss. I do have to admit that the last four pages of the book are worth double the price of admission, so I would suggest that you grab a copy if you can. (When was the last time THAT was ever said about a copy of HEX?).

18 issues of the bounty hunter thrown into the future comes to a close. Was it worth it? Or should they have just left Jonah in the past, never to see his own corpse?

The issue is closed out with a letters page, the last letter by T.M. Maple himself.

Next Up: Ten short months later and Secret Origins presents us with the Secret Origin of Jonah Hex.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Hex #17 "The War with the Xxggs"

Hex #17 Jan 1987
"The War with the Xxggs"
Michael Fleisher, story - Keith Giffen and Carlos Garzon, art and cover


Oh. You want MORE detail than that? ooooooooooookay. Hang on, cuz here we go!

Jonah Hex, our scar-faced time-displaced bounty hunter is the topic of conversation between S'ven Tarah and Stanley Harris. S'ven is astonished at how much havoc Jonah was able to cause when suddenly the guard drones drag Stiletta into the room. Stiletta is surprised to see Harris since she thought he went back to the past right before the Needle explosion. She takes out the guard drones and then I have no idea what happens. Don't believe me? YOU tell me what is going on in these three panels.

Meanwhile, three Xxggs are running loose through the compound, searching for S'ven Tarah. They also have these floating sidekicks (ala Skeet) by they appear to be organic and shoot and horrific power blast, at least that what I THINK is happening in these three panels.

Currently S'ven Tarah has realized that the Xxggs are in the compound and he has 30 minutes before he can launch his spaceship that will signal the future destruction of the Xxggs race. The Dogs of War offer to battle the Xxggs but S'ven reminds them that five of them are required to properly man the spaceship if its mission is to be successful. If even one of the Dogs of War perish, Earth (in the future) is doomed. S'ven decides to dispatch his guard drones to slow down the Xxggs to buy time until liftoff. The Dogs of War, along with Jonah Hex and Stiletta, take off for the spaceship.

During the quick race across the compound, Jonah asks if anyone can bring him up to speed. Harris explains S'ven's plan to alter the genetic makeup of the Xxggs race in this current time and the genetic weakness will snowball until the Xxggs can be defeated in the far flung future. Jonah replies that he is still in the dark on what is going on.

You and me both, Jonah, you and me both.

Across the compound, the Xxggs encounter the guard drone army and quickly dispatch the several hundred of them. S'ven, realizing that the Xxggs have not been slowed down enough does the only thing he can. He releases all of the prisoners, the criminals and the innocents that he enslaved, provides them with weapons and allows them to encounter the Xxggs. Thousands of slaves are released and when they encounter the aliens, they fight bravely, but are slaughtered en mass.

With time running out and the Xxggs having the run of the compound, S'ven orders the Dogs of War to fight the Xxggs to prevent the destruction of the spaceship, however, none of them may fall in combat. The Dogs of War embark from the skycraft that are using to get across the compound (when did they get into THAT?!?!?) leaving Jonah and Stiletta to their own devices. Jonah roots around the ship and finds a jacket that somewhat fits.

The Centurion encounters the first Xxgg and it's sidekick and blasts it with enough energy to "level half of Rome" but the aliens are unfazed and the Centurion has to retreat.

Harris encounters a Xxgg next and using his chronal aging powers quickly ages a huge wall, causing it to collapse on the Xxgg, but the alien is able to blast its way free and Harris beats a hasty retreat.

The Ninja is next up and with the swiftness of his blade is able to slice one of the sidekicks in half but there is some sort of explosion and a wall collapses and falls on him, crushing him. One of the sidekicks is laughing a hideous laugh when a huge arm jets up from the rubble and squishes the sidekick. It is the Demon that lives within the ninja. The demon states that he is sworn to forever thwart the ninja's hope of an honorable death and then retreats back into the ninja. As the Ninja realizes what has happened, we here the Demon state "Effortlessly could I destroy all your enemies if I chose, little ninja, but give me one good reason why I should."

Then we see....wait one cotton picking minute. The Demon could kill all the aliens but won't? The demon is sworn to protect the Ninja from an honorable death? Then why the hell didn't the ninja head out and take on the aliens all by himself? That would be an honorable death and the demon would HAVE to protect him and destroy the aliens. I ain't no ninja and I could get that demon to do MY dirty work. Sheesh.

Anyway, then we see the viking running toward a Xxgg with his battleaxe, he smacks the ground with it, causing the rocks that the Xxgg is standing on to crumble but then he heads out for the spaceship.

Next is the flying Manta Ray who quickly realizes the Xxgg are immune to his paralyzing stare and he heads for the spaceship.

By now S'ven is resigned to his loss when suddenly Jonah Hex breaks in on the comlink and quickly outlines his plan. Its crazy, but just crazy enough to work. Stiletta drops Jonah off in front of the Xxggs and he takes off on foot and the aliens give chase. Jonah runs down a tunnel and turns a corner. The Xxggs come around the corner, see the tunnel and head in, just as Jonah steps from the shadows and activates the forcefield, sealing the Xxggs within the tunnel.

Much much too late the Xxggs realize that the tunnel they are in is actually the exhaust damper chamber for the spaceship and as it takes off they are fried to a crisp.

With the ship safely in space and all of the Dogs of War safely aboard, S'ven thanks Jonah and Stiletta for their help and explains that he must go back to his own time. If he does not, the Xxggs will send more search parties. S'ven will wipe his mind of all knowledge of what has happened, they will capture him and realize that he knows nothing.

Jonah interrupts, saying that since S'ven has been talking about time travel could he send Jonah back home? S'ven states that the teleportation crystal that he has only has enough energy for one more trip. Jonah asks what will happen when S'ven returns. S'vwn replies that he will be mind-scanned and then executed...then he fades away.

Jonah and Stiletta are left among the smoking, burning ruins of the compound and Jonah looks upward. Stiletta asks "Well?" Jonah replies, "Nuthin. Just lookin that's all. Wondering if'n mebbe ah couldn't see 'em." and we are left to see a twinkling star that could be the spaceship that will save the Earth.

Statistics for this Issue
Men Killed by Jonah - 0 (Three aliens don't count)
Running Total - 478 (428 past, 50 future)
Jonah's Injuries - none
Timeline - same day as last issue

Well, like I said earlier, it's a lot of fighting and a little bit of sadness. Sadly, everything was out of character with Jonah being the one to figure out to lure the Xxggs into the damper chamber but he is the hero of the book. It's just that Jonah can hold his own against humans in the future, but you start throwing in super powers and alien races, and that stretches even MY willing suspension of disbelief.

Giffen's artwork is still a major downfall of this book and there are times that I realize that if this book is ever printed in black and white there is no way in HELL anyone could know what is going on. Personally, I think that he should be charged with fraud for posing as an artist. Does anyone know if Giffen got some sort of kickback from a black ink company? I have NEVER seen an 'artist' use so much of the stuff.

Next Issue: Jonah has one last shootout and makes a horrific discovery.