Thursday, March 25, 2010

Hex #6 "The Soames Conspiracy"

Hex #6  Feb 1986
"The Soames Conspiracy"
Michael Fleisher, story - Mark Texeira and Carlos Garzon, art and cover

The connection to the scanner is acting wonky, so I'll have scans for this issue up next week.
Jonah Hex and Stiletta are completely surrounded by the Conglomerate goons after having defeated Chain and they are led off to who knows where.

Meanwhile in the Needle, Harris is slowly recovering from the biochemical interrogation and is taken back to the statis tubes. The guards start to put Harris into a tube and he suddenly lashes out, beating the crap out of both guards, steals a weapon and attempts to leave the Needle. Except he discovers that the Needle is slightly bigger than he anticipated.

Back at the Conglomerate's country house, Hex and Stiletta are 'guests' of the head of the Conglomerate. The head explains about the global war that contaminated the global drinking supply and how nomad gangs starting taking over various regions. The world was a living hell until Nobel chemist Wilfred Soames, located near Lake Victoria in Tanzania, devised a tablet that would purify a gallon of water almost instantly. Soames had planned on distributing the tablets for free in order to save the world. The Conglomerate had different ideas.

In the US the Conglomerate cornered the market on production and they eventually became the government. Soames (the tablet) eventually became the only excepted form of currency. However, there is a fly in the ointment and the fly is named Reinhold Borsten. The Conglomerate has learned that Borsten plans on dumping a chemical in to the global cloud cover that will neutralize all the radioactivity in the clouds, essentially solving the global radiated water supply.

However, Borsten has to travel into the past to obtain the tools needed to pull this off. The Conglomerate has intel saying that with one more trip, Borsten will be able to complete his plans, purify the global water supply and destroy the soames standard, thus toppling the Conglomerate from controlling the US. Their plan is to stop Borsten by getting Hex back into the Needle, allowing him to use the time machine to return to the 1800's and destroy the machine in the process. They explain that they have a man inside the Needle that will help Hex, but the spy is unable to gain access to the time machine area, whereas Jonah is a 'one-man army'.

In the Needle, Borsten has left the rejuvenation bubble where he was recovering from his last trip to the 2042. A guard enters the room to state that Harris has escaped from the statis tubes. Borsten demands that Harris be recaptured and that he wants his head guard, Brollin, on the job. Another guard explains that Brolin is mourning his father who was a waste-disposal driver murdered by Hex.

We find Brolin at the cemetery, mourning his father and obsessing how he wants revenge for what Jonah Hex has taken from him.

That night we find Stiletta and Jonah Hex in the country house of the Conglomerate talking about the upcoming assault on the Needle. Stiletta says that she'll help get Hex into the Needle because she has business there as well. She had to murder Borsten, her father.

She explains how Borsten worked for the time travel project, learned of the holocaust and made plans to escape to the future. However, he never warned his family of the upcoming devastation. Stiletta was staying with her grandparents in the country, but Borsten's wife was in the city and died in the war. Stiletta assumed that her father was dead as well, but years later she learned the truth and swore to kill her father for what he had done.

In the Needle, the search for Harris continued but Harris has crawled up into the ductwork to hide. However, Harris soons learns that there is something else living in the ductwork of the Needle.....rats!

The next morning, Jonah and Stiletta take off for the Needle, however Jonah explains that he is leaving Stiletta, he can't afford to allow her personal agenda to jeopardize his chance to get back to the past. Stiletta pulls a pistol, demanding that Hex help her but as he takes off she finds herself unable to pull the trigger.

An old rado-scarred bum walks up to the Needle to tell a guard that he has found Jonah Hex and that he wants the 2,000 soames reward (or about $12.14 in today's money). The bum says that he saw Hex hanging out by the old game pier. The guard explains that they have already caught Hex and the reward has been claimed. However, he gives the bum some soames to hold him over. The bum leaves and guard is excited about how he can collect the reward for locating Jonah Hex.

Shortly thereafter, Borsten notifies Brolin of Jonah's location and Brolin takes his men out to capture Hex.

At the Conglomerate, the head gets word that their spy, dressed as an old bum, has notified the Needle of Jonah's location.

So let's go to the game pier, a Coney Island with a horrible 1980's future punk twist. Jonah is suddenly stopped by several hoods who attempt to rob him, but suddenly they are all gunned down by Borsten's men. Jonah takes off running as Borsten's men demand that he give himself up.

Jonah jumps a nearby fence, landing smack in the middle of a demo-derby type tri-motorcycle race. He punches a driver, takes his bike and grabs his shotgun. Jonah kills two guards and crashes through the fence and onto the pier. Suddenly three large vehicles rise from the water and start shooting. Jonah spins the cycle around and two guards on cycles chase after him. They shoot netting at Hex and capture him. However, Jonah speeds up the bike, drawing the two guards closer together until they crash. Smashing through a guardrail, Jonah gets the bike onto the rollercoaster track and heads for high ground.

When he gets near the top, there is a helicopter waiting for him but Jonah locks down the throttle, jumps from the bike and watches as the bike top the hill, becomes airborne and smashes into the chopper. Just then a rollercoaster car with two guards comes up behind Jonah and he dives over the side just as the car slams into the wrecked cycle and chopper. The whole shooting match explodes as Jonah climbs down the side of the coaster track.

Once Jonah reaches the pier, Brolin is waiting for him. Jonah surrenders and holds his hands out get cuffed. However Brolin has not intention of taking Jonah alive and slowly draws a bead on Hex.....

Statistics for this Issue
Men Killed by Jonah - 2 with the shotgun, 2 on the cycles, 2 in the chopper and 2 on the rollercoaster for a total of 8
Running Total - 455 (428 past, 27 future)
Jonah's Injuries - none
Timeline - This issue finishes the night and into the next day. Jonah has been in the future for three days.

This was one crazy issue and I loved it. In the last several issues of Jonah Hex, Michael Fleisher had introducing complex overlapping storylines along with fleshing out secondary characters. He continues with the same formula here in Hex. We get Brolin, who we have seen several times before but was never named, who now has a personal reason to kill Hex; Stiletta has a vendetta of her own; the Conglomerate discloses the reason it is opposing Borsten's work; and we get a huge dose of action at the end of the issue. All in all, one of the better stories containing Jonah Hex.

Next Issue: (again, I'll let Mr. Fleisher deliver the pitch on this one) Harris gets eaten by rats, Borsten gets burned alive, and the Needle gets blown to hell!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Oh, Dear Lord, When will WB finally get a CLUE?!?!?!

.... about how to market a movie?!?!? We are 3 months away from the release of the Jonah Hex film, there is STILL TALK OF ZOMBIES IN THE FILM!?!?!?  There is STILL NO TRAILER!!!! and then.....THEN... we get THIS from

Is Megan Fox's Bust a Spoiler?

Source: Silas Lesnick

March 23, 2010

DC Comics announced it's full solicitations for June last night and, with it, a glimpse at the previously-showcased series of Jonah Hex mini-busts, including Josh Brolin as the titular scarred cowboy and Megan Fox as "working girl" Leila. Check out the description below, but be prepared for a potential spoiler:



This hand-painted, cold-cast porcelain bust depicts working girl Leila as she appears in the upcoming movie, posed atop a crate of dynamite.

Packaged in a 4-color box, the Leila Bust measures approximately 5.75” high x 2.75” wide x 2.25” deep.


*Quantities may be allocated.

On sale June 16, 2010

Bust * $80 U

Did you catch it? Up until now, Fox's character has only been referred to by her first name. Calling her "Leila Hex" leads to three distinct possibilities: she could be a blood relation and a twist could reveal that she is, in fact, Jonah's sister (which would make the nude bed scene Warner Bros. showcased at ComicCon last year more than a little disturbing). She could be Jonah's wife, who may have left Hex for dead and moved on to a lucrative prostitution gig. Or, it could all be a mistake on DC's part and the word "Hex" just popped up in the wrong place.

Whatever the case may be, we should know for sure when Jonah Hex hits theaters on June 18th.

Did ya catch that? LEILA HEX?!?!?!
Yes, I am screaming on the inside & the outside.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Spring in Oklahoma...

...means that yesterday it was 70 something and today we have wind chills in the single digits. Yup, 50 MPH, snow and a little sleet mixed in from time to time. At least it isn't as bad as Christmas:

And while you're staying inside (since you've already read all your comics from Wednesday) you can enjoy this:

Stay Warm!!!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Hex #5 "The Seattle Chainsaw Massacre"

Hex #5 Jan 1986
"The Seattle Chainsaw Massacre"
Michael Fleisher, story - Mark Texiera and Carlos Garzon, art and cover

The three Conglomerate hoods land their hovo in front of the cave that Jonah and Stiletta have just emerged from. Once they exit the hovo, Jonah throws a knife at one of them and gets a quick introduction to body armor. Stiletta, however, ends up kicking on of the thugs in and unarmored organ, Jonah takes the cue and decks the one guarding him. Jonah and Stiletta quickly get the third thug out of the hovo and leave all three of them as they take off for parts unknown.

Meanwhile in 2042, Borsten is back in the top secret facility that he used to work in and he is sneaking down the microbial agent wing, hoping to obtain something that will allow him to overthrow the Conglomerate and rule the future. He enters a room but is stopped by another scientist who demands to see his credentials. Borsten creds only allow him into chronal studies and the scientist attempts to stop Borsten. Borsten pulls a pistol and demands a small beaker from the room.

The scientists are confused because he is asking for a totally harmless, though highly specialized, microbe. Suddenly Borsten has a seizure and realizes that he will die unless he gets back to the future and the Needle. He presses a button on his watch and returns to the future.

Speaking of which, back in the Needle in 2050, one of Borsten's scientists is getting ready for the boss's return and pulls up a file that he knows Borsten will want to see when he gets back. There is a sudden flash in the lab and Borsten returns and collapses to the floor. The scientist rushes to Borsten's aid and quickly drags him down the hall to the rejuvenation bubble. This leaves one lone technician in the room and he quickly pulls out a floppy disk, inserts it into the main computer and copies the secret file for the Conglomerate.

Meanwhile, Stiletta and Hex make a landing near a diner to grab some grub. Stiletta finds Hex's irons in the back of the hovo, guessing that the Conglomerate goons had abushed the hill scum to find out which direction she and Hex had gone. At the diner, Stiletta is amazed to find that diner for two will cost forty soames but Jonah politely persuades the owner (by placing his six-gun into the owner's mouth) that they are allowed to have a huge discount.

During dinner, Stiletta says that she and Hex should team-up since they are both survivors. Jonah replies that all he wants to do is get back home so Stiletta says that she can help Hex crash the Needle, but first they'll have to get some big equipment and to do THAT, they'll need to lay their hands on some soames, a LOT of soames.

Elsewhere, in a home owned by the Conglomerate, two of its members are looking at a photo taken from Barnaby Blossom's hovo, showing Blossom falling through the sun roof and Jonah in the hovo. They recognize Hex as the gunfighter that Borsten was supposed to have at a show and they draw the conclusion that Jonah Hex is working for Borsten by hijacking the Conglomerates lotus drug shipments. They decide to put an end to all of this foolishness by calling in a guy referred to as "Chain"

We cut to an desolate alleyway where a young scrawny nerdy looking guy carrying a bag of groceries  is in immediate danger of getting mugged by a gang of goons. The kid takes off running and manages to get into a small shack, all the while screaming for his big brother, Gowan. The goons run up to the door and easily kick it in and storm into the dark shack. The young kid can be heard sobbing and another voice rises up in the darkness, telling Marty (the kid) that he doesn't have to be afraid. We suddenly see one of the goons through clear through a wall, we hear another goon begging for mercy followed by a loud cracking sound and the other two goons make it out the door, running like hell.

A television screen lights up the shack as we see a member of the Conglomerate ask to talk to Chain. Chain (aka Gowan) drops a dead goon to the floor and takes the call. The Conglomerate says they need him immediately but Chain replies that he can be there in an hour, right after he makes Marty some hot chocolate and tucks him safely into bed.

Later that night we find Jonah Hex and Stiletta on a cliff edge overlooking a Conglomerate sub-treasury compound (aka soames storehouse). They are surveying the compound with high powered binoculars and Stiletta aks Jonah if he has any ideas on how to get in. Jonah replies "Yup."

Later, at a guard tower in the compound a hovo suddenly swoops from the sky towards the guards. They react instantly, shooting it from the sky and it crashes into the compound in a huge explosion. This throws the compound into red alert and they start evacuating the armored cars (soames wagons). One of the drivers jumps into his truck only to find Jonah Hex inside pointing a pistol at his head.

Jonah and Stiletta end up hijacking the truck and breaking away from the convoy that is headed to safety. Meanwhile, Chain, in his own hovo, picks up the radio chatter about the runaway truck and realizes that Jonah Hex is behind the theft.

In the truck, Stiletta is driving, and Jonah says he sure hopes they get away with this. Just then there is a huge THUD on the roof when Chain lands on the truck. Suddenly there is a rending of metal as a chainsaw cuts down through the roof. Jonah grabs his pistol and pumps a couple of slugs into Chain with no effect. Stiletta exclaims that he must have titanium body armor and as Chain takes another swipe through the truck cab, she cuts the wheel hard to the left and throws the killer off.

Chain, however is equipped with boot jets and doesn't splat on the ground. Sadly, Stiletta looses control of the truck and smashes into a hovo repair/junk yard. They both jump out of the wrecked truck as Chain smashes through it in pursuit. Stiletta is hit in the head with flying debris and falls to the ground. Jonah fires a few more times at Chain and then picks up a huge chunk of pipe, which Chain easily cuts through.

Jonah decides to hotfoot it out of there until he can hatch a better plan. This leads to a game of cat and mouse in the junkyard until Jonah is able to topple a huge stack of wrecked hovos on top of Chain. To Jonah's dismay, Chain is able to cut his way out of the mess.

. Jonah resorts to his fists, sadly to no effect, and Chain calmly picks Jonah up and starts choking the life from him. Stiletta has regained consciousness and shouts for Jonah to hit the button on the machine next to him. Jonah lashes out and hits the button, turning on the electro magnet/compactor. This picks Chain up, drops him into the compactor and smashes him. Chain barely survives but is out of the fight.

Jonah picks up Stiletta and they start to leave, only to find themselves completely surrounded by the Conglomerate!!

Statistics for this Issue
Men killed by Jonah - 0
Running total - 447 (428 past, 19 future)
Jonah's Injuries - None
Timeline - Same day as last issue, but we have progressed into that night.

Overall not a bad issue. One thing I do want to cover is the character of Chain. We meet his younger brother (Marty) and then we meet Chain (aka Gowan) . However, we never see the two of them together. When I read this book back in the 80's I always had this feeling that Gowan and Marty were the same person, kinda like Norman Bates and his mom. Why? I don't know unless it was we heard Marty's voice coming from a dark room right before Chain appears. (I might have to ask Mr. Fleisher about this.)

We get more mystery with the Conglomerate, more of Borsten's plans are revealed, Stiletta is getting a little sweet on Jonah. This issue moves the story along nicely, introduces a new character or two and gives us some action to boot. Thumbs up for this one.

Next Issue: Harris breaks out, the creation of soames, the origin of Stiletta, and Jonah rides the rollercoaster!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


Got my books this week (actually for the month) and got a couple of nice surprises.

1) DC has finally put a house ad for Jonah Hex in their books. It's been, what? Like 25 years since I had seen one? Now I have to go research through my collection to verify.

2) I was talking to my FLCS owner (Second Chance Books and Comics) and he said that his sales of Jonah Hex have quadrupled recently. He's not sure if it is talk of the upcoming trailer-less film, all the trades, or the upcoming graphic novel, but it is steadily growing.

Just for grins, we made gingerbread cookies last night:

Hal Jordan & Guy Gardner, COOKIES!

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Hex #4 "Worms"

Hex #4 Dec 1985
Michael Fleisher, story - Ron Wagner and Carlos Garzon, art - Mark Texeira and Klaus Janson, cover

Jonah Hex is in the out of control hovercraft of the late Barnaby Blossom and is heading straight for the side of a mountain. Jonah, being the fine pilot he is, slams headlong into the cliff face.

Meanwhile, three other men in a different craft are tracking Blossom's ship on a radar and are thinking that someone probably hijacked Blossom and his cargo.

Back at the wall of rock, Jonah is lucky enough that his crashed transportation has landed on a ledge and as he works his way out of the burning wreckage, the craft suddenly topples and Jonah is left to climb up teh sheer rock wall all by his lonesome.

We flash back to the jungles of Viet Nam to find Harris running for his life. Suddenly he steps into a trap and is captured by the VC! They take him back to their village and start torturing him, asking questions. Harris only gives up his name, rank, and serial number. However the VC keep demanding to know about the CIA, troop movements, mission details and the location of Jonah Hex!

Then we find out the truth, Harris is drugged and held captive by Dr. Kinglet, head medical lackey of Reinhold Borsten. Kinglet states that Harris's will is so strong that he continues to fight the hypno drugs even to the point of damaging his brain. Borsten, who slowly enters the room, states that Hex needs to be recaptured before Borsten takes his next journey into the past.

Several hours later, we find Jonah Hex stumbling across various canyons, nursing his busted ribs and looking for water. He finally finds a watering hole and as he falls down, scooping up double handfuls of water he hears a voice behind him warning not to drink the water.

It's Stiletta! Jonah pulls his pistol and demands that she stay back since she's some kind of machine that he saw blasted apart. She says that whatever he saw, it wasn't her. She kneels down and fills a canteen with water, stating that she has no idea how Jonah Hex got to be so ignorant, but that in the holocaust of 2045, all open water was contaminated to the point of one taste kills a man. She takes a wafer, splits it into quarters and drops one in the canteen, explaining that it is a soames and that one soames purifies one gallon of water.

Meanwhile, our three airborne friends from before have finally come upon the wreckage of Barnaby Blossom's machine.

By now, Jonah and Stiletta have gotten their canteens filled and are on her motorcycle. Jonah has explained where he is from and how he got stranded. Stiletta isn't surprised since it explains a whole lot about him. She had lost track of Hex after the battle for the water and then heard about a scar-faced guy that hijacked a conglomerate 'hovo'. Just then they are set upon by hill scum! Several men jump from the overhanging cliffs and knock Stiletta and Jonah off the bike. Both are eventually overcome by their attackers and once the hill scum finish robbing them, they decide to kill Hex and Stiletta. Jonah grabs a handful of sand, throws it into the hill scum's eyes, grabs Stiletta and jumps over the edge of the cliff. The hill scum stand atop the cliff, watching the pair slide and tumble to their death.

Our three friends from the Conglomerate have landed beside the wreckage and have retrieved the black box in order to learn what happened to Blossom. What they see leads them to believe that Jonah hijacked Blossom and threw him out the busted sun roof.

We now find Jonah and Stiletta walking across the Washington state desert. Stiletta mentions that Falcon told her about a cave that had clean water in it about twelve miles from where they are. They slowly head for the cave when Stiletta says that there is something that she should tell Hex. She explains that Reinhold Borsten is her father.

Back at the Needle, Borsten is giving a great explanation of the history of he and his daughter. Eight years ago, in 2042 (thus making this 2050), Borsten worked as a national security administration liaison to the top-secret project Cronos, tasked with building a time machine. They were eventually successful and decided to send one of their scientists three years into the future, to 2045. The man vanished and never returned.

Not until much later that is. Somehow, unexplained, one night when Borsten was in the lab, the time machine started up and the co worker that had been sent to 2045 returned. Sadly he was near death, his body ravaged and disfigured from radiation poisoning. With his dying words the man explained about the global nuclear war that wiped out everything, leaving the planet broken almost beyond repair.

Acting quickly, Borsten sent the man's dying body into the far far future (I would love to see his body suddenly appear with no explanation in a Legion of Super Heroes story!!), gathered all the plans and programs needed to restore the planet and then sent himself five years into the future, to 2047. As he vanished, he tossed a hand grenade into the lab, destroying the only working time machine.

To his dismay, by the time Borsten had arrived, the underworld had already started repairing the earth and had formed the Conglomerate, holding complete control over the entire planet because it was they alone who controlled the production of soames. Borsten, however, does have plans to overthrow the Congolmerate and take over control of the earth.

We finally find Jonah and Stiletta walking up to the cave (Let's see, twelve miles at three miles an hour is four hours, but they are injured so let's say six hours later). They rig up a torch and head into the cave and quickly find the pool of clean water. However, they also find...


Jonah uses the torch to fight of the slimy bloodsuckers as Stiletta fills up the canteen. She gets it filled but suddenly one of the worms wraps around her leg. She panics, lunging backwards and falls into Jonah, who accidentally throws the torch into the pool of water.

In the total darkness, Jonah tells her to light a match. She gets one lit and out of the darkness, Jonah hands her his shirt, telling her to light it. Once it starts blazing we see....

They finally get the giant bloodsucking things off of Hex and Jonah cuts the last one in half with his handy knife. They stumble out of the cave with the canteen of water just as we see our three friends from the Conglomerate draw a bead on them from up above..

Statistics for this Issue:
Men killed by Jonah - hmm, we see three hill scum bodies and we know that Stiletta sliced one open so let's say Jonah gets two kills.
Running Total - 447 (428 past, 19 future)
Jonah's Injuries - Broken ribs from the crash and several lost patches of skin from the worms.
Timeline - Can you believe that it is still day number two of Jonah Hex in the future? I think the days must be longer of something! Anyway, we know that we are now in 2050!!

A pretty good issue. We get one aspect of Stiletta resolved, we play catch-up on history thanks to Reinhold "Exposition Machine" Borsten, we learn more of the fate of Stanley Harris, and we have a large villain in the drug dealing Conglomerate. Lots of action, lots of danger. It's some pretty typical 80's sci-fi, but damn, it's Jonah Hex and that carries me a long way. (Note: Please do NOT remind me of this last sentence when we finally get to Shadows West.)

So far in HEX we have a well laid out culture with a strong historical backstory and it is apparent that Fleisher isn't making this up one issue at a time. I'm enjoying it, I really am (and I was back in 1985)

Next Issue: A spy in the needle, Borsten goes back to 2042, Stiletta and Hex plan to rob the Conglomerate, and we meet the number one paid hitman in.... The Seattle Chainsaw Massacre!!!