Saturday, May 29, 2010

Awww, what the heck! How about some chicken?

If you're in the mood for fried chicken this weekend, you outta hit Eischen's in Okarche, OK. We stop in every chance we get.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Hex #9 "Day of the Cyborg!"

Hex #9 May 1986
"Day of the Cyborg!"
Michael Fleisher, story - Mark Texeira and Carlos Garzon and Pablos Marcos, art - Mark Texeira and Pablos Marcos, cover

  Jonah cannot locate Stiletta after she was mysteriously abducted and we find him sitting in a bar tossing back a few. In a typical Jonah Hex fashion, he is downing drink after drink after drink until he is interrupted by three thugs who are spouting off about how Jonah beat the Shooting Gallery earning ten thousand soames. They ask for a demonstration of Jonah's skill, in a rather threatening manner, and Jonah, drunk or not, skillfully obliges by killing all three. But just then we spy another thug drawing a bead on Jonah, but the thug is knocked out by the vocalist of the bar band.

   The vocalist, a fella by the name of George Arthur but traveling under the moniker of Flame, advises that they both make tracks out of the bar before some more of the thugs friends show up. As they walk the streets, Flame is talking about the downward spiral that society has taken and that he and his fiance, Faythe, are going to join a gated community outside the city. A small establishment called Elysian Meadows that sounds just wonderful.

  In short order, Flame and Jonah arrive at a parking lot and Flame gets on his motorcycle and takes off but his guitar falls off unnoticed. Jonah picks up the guitar and decides to track down Flame in the morning and return the instrument.

The next day we find ourselves within the domed gated wonderland that is Elysian Meadows. Within the community, everyone is happy and they are greeting not only each other but also a Dr. Adamant, the creator of the community. Adamant is speaking with an aide when we spot Flame riding down the street on his motorcycle. Adamant asks the aide about Flame, but the aide states that George Arthur is engaged to one of their residents and that his arrival has been anticipated.

  Flame jumps off his bike and is greeted by Faythe but Faythe has cut her hair and is wearing normal clothes. She leads Flame into the house where two large armed guards apprehend Flame despite his screams and struggles.

Some time later, Jonah Hex is outside the gate trying to get in to return Flame's guitar. The guard is doing typical guard things with his list of residents and ongoing denials but then spots George Arthur under the new arrivals. The guard tells Jonah that he can enter but he first has to surrender his weapons. Jonah starts to drive past the guard, but the guard reaches out, grabs Jonah by the throat and hoists him off the cycle. Fighting for air, Hex draws his pistol and fires, blowing the guards arm clean off but we find out that the guard is a robot. Hex jumps onto his cycle and speeds off into the dome.

Inside the dome other guards have been alerted and start to close in on Hex. Jonah dismounts and opens fire, taking down several of the robot guards. As Jonah runs through the streets, the members of the community appear oblivious of the carnage all around them. Jonah ducks behind a house and starts reloading when Flame walks up. Flame's hair is cut and he is wearing normal clothes. Flame suddenly turns and shouts out to the guards that he has found Jonah Hex.

The captured Jonah hex is taken to the company of Dr. Adamant, who proves to be a master of exposition. Adamant talks of the construction of the cyborg control force (so they WEREN'T robots!) and that mankind has not yet evolved to the place where they can be trusted to maintain their own free will. Therefore new arrivals to the wonderful world he has created are outfitted with a brain diode implant that keeps the residents in a passive state. Of course, with everyone being so laid back, the good doctor was forced to create an army of cyborgs to guard the establishment.

And, of course, since Jonah Hex is a natural born fighter, Dr. Adamant has plans to turn Jonah into a bionic cyborg. So they beat the tar out of Jonah, strap him to a table and wheel him into surgery. Once in surgery the stupid stupid doctors make the mistake of getting the surgical laser within kicking range of Jonah. He therefore kicks the living bejesus out of the laser, sending it twirling crazily and loping off an incredible amount of cyborg limbs.

Hex then pulls a small four-shot derringer out of his boot, unstraps himself from the table and opens up, giving himself enough time to work the controls on the operating room door, blast the controls, run through the door and then close the door from the outside. Jonah then beats a hasty retreat down the hall.

Jonah finally locates Dr. Adamant and when the Doc starts advancing on Hex, Jonah shoots him point blank. Sadly, the bullet bounces harmlessly off Adamant and then the doc backhands Hex with unbridled fury. Adamant then lifts Hex one-handed and throws him across the room. Jonah manages to grab a handy flamethrower and opens up with it.

Dr. Adamant, his flesh burnt off, continues to advance on Jonah because Dr. Adamant is not a cyborg, but a full-blown robot. Adamant grabs a section of the wall, rips it up and throws it at Hex, who dodges it.

Meanwhile, the brain-addled Flame and Faythe are bringing flower to Jonah to celebrate his surgical recovery and addition to the cyborg guards.

Jonah Hex continues to flee from Adamant and gets a huge air-lock type door between him and the robot. Adamant won't be stopped and rips the door from the frame and then grabs an axe and starts swinging. In a rage of anger, the robot throws the axe, severing some electrical cables on the far wall. Adamant grabs the axe by the wooden handle and starts swinging again, getting closer and closer to Hex. Just as he is about to deliver the death blow, Flame and Faythe enter the rooom asking if they can visit Jonah.

Adamant is distracted for a second and Jonah leaps up, grabs the electrical cable and throws it at the robot, which results in the instant melting/vaporization of the robot. Jonah then searches around the room to find the mind-control switch and flips it off. Immediately Flame and Faythe come to their senses.

A short time later, Jonah is bidding farewell to the lovely couple and takes off to find Stiletta. As he drives off he notes that life in 1875 was downright serene compared to here and we see residents of the domed community arguing over gardening tools.

Statistics for the Issue
Men Killed by Jonah - 3 thugs in the bar. I don't count any of the cyborgs cuz, well, they're cyborgs.
Running Total - 467 (428 past, 39 future)
Jonah's Injuries - beat up and choked a couple of times.
Timeline - Well, I'll be generous here. It appears that Jonah has been searching for Stiletta for some time, so we'll say that a week has passed prior to this issue and in the issue we do have one day pass. Therefore, since last issue was day 4, let's say that this issue ends on day 12 of Jonah's visit to the future.

The artwork in this issue was very good (I love Texeira's style) with some weird looking cyborg types both in and out of the domed city. The story had a lot of shooting and what not, but the plot was a little thin especially with the quick dispatch of Dr. Adamant. What do ya want, characterization or action?

Next Issue: Jonah Hex takes on the 1930's Chicago Mob, a lunatic church, a monorail, and a shopping mall. How much crazy can one cowboy handle?

Monday, May 17, 2010

Another Jonah Hex trailer

This one aired during the Survivor Finale on Sunday night. I'll see if this stays up on YouTube, if so I might try to get a better copy off the DVR.

Nothing we haven't seen before, but nice to see another trailer. The more the better!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Oklahoma weather makes you want to move here.

Last week we had a tornado that thankfully missed us. This week, a hail storm hit the entire metro area.

Friday, May 14, 2010

A second "trailer" for Jonah Hex

The official Jonah Hex site has a flash opening that is a second trailer. We get mostly the same scenes with a few extras tossed in. We have more of a fistfight between Jonah hex and Quentin Turnbull that involved Hex beating the crap out of Turnbull with his own eagle-topped cane. We also have several more scenes of Burke (Michael Fassbender) in hand to hand with Hex.

Check it out, it's worth a look.

More bits and pieces from the Jonah Hex set visit.

I went back through my notes and memories to pull up a few more items about the Jonah Hex movie:

* Makeup - Talking with the makeup artist he said that their major problem was Jonah Hex actually has parts missing from his face and with makeup you are adding things to the actor's face. They did the sketch work for the look of Jonah Hex, but every problem they solved created one or two more other problems. What they finally came up with included "a rig" that has tabs that pull the right side of his face backwards, dentures with wires that pull back his lips to create the hole in his cheek and then two layers of prosthetics to create the depression in his cheek.

With all of this on, however, Josh Brolin is unable to eat and since he can't get any suction (due to the hole) he can't even drink through a straw (or smoke. I would have loved to have seen smoke leaking out of his mouth during the film.), meaning that he went a whole day without eating.

Also, this rigging also meant that half of Josh's face was more or less paralyzed. Of course this impacted Brolin's ability to act so the makeup team had to go through a couple of versions to allow some mobility in order for Brolin to accomplish his job.

They did consider post production work to augment the makeup but since Jonah Hex appears in about 90% of the film the decision was made to forgo any post work and utilize the practical makeup to its full potential.

Regarding the right eye? They did play with pulling the eye down and exposing it but the decision was made leave the eye itself alone but use the makeup to create the illusion that the skin below the eye is drawn downward. By leaving Brolin's eye alone they not only kept his eyes from injury (the possibility of infection and damage was greatly increased, if not insured, by pulling back the eyelids) but also allowed Brolin to be able to have some emotion on the right side of his face. Josh also explained that he ended up drooling quite often because of the manipulation of his lips and mouth.

Probably the most interesting quote from the makeup artist was when I asked if the scarring was medically accurate for a burn from a heated tomahawk. The response? "You know, this is interesting. There is the tomahawk version to the face, which is part of the scarring, but there is something else that gives him the scar and in the process of trying to design this makeup one of the things that we did is that we went out and we bought a pork butt and we heated up the element that gives Jonah his scar and we burned into it. We studied that, we took casts from there and we duplicated that look into a prosthetic that Josh wears for some of the earlier scenes. So we tried to base everything in reality...when it comes to a fight sequence and any trauma that occurs to the characters." During the interview, when he said "tomahawk version" my mind was racing, because there is only one version of how Jonah Hex was scarred. After seeing the previews, I understand that he was referring to the branding iron that Turnbull uses on Hex. Re-reading the answer now, my interest revolves around the phrase "we duplicated that look into a prosthetic that Josh wears for some of the earlier scenes". Does this mean that there is additional scarring or damage inflicted upon Hex? Hmmmmm.

Burke, played by Michael Fassbender, is covered in tattoos via a backstory of that he was stranded on a Polynesian island while he was being transported to a "prison island" (Australia?). The tattoos were all transfer tats.

They also gave John Malkovich a prosthetic nose that was patterned after another actor (unnamed, of course) that has a scar running down the middle of his nose. The scar is not explained in the film or even has a reason other than to add visually to the character.

Every character also has dentures in order to have a period look to their teeth. Did Megan Fox get these as well? Nobody asked, but I would venture "No."

* Weapons - We spoke with the 2nd assistant prop master (missed his name, sorry) and the partial list of damage inflicting hardware includes Jonah carrying:

Horse mounted Gatling guns
.45 single action Army
Remington conversion Civil War cap and ball (converted from cap and ball to cartridge)
Two old .45 caliber cap and ball Dragoons
A 1866 Yellow Blade Winchester 44-40
1873 Winchester

What does Turnbull tote around (other than the branding iron)?
A LeMat, a French revolver, with a nine shot cylinder with the equivalent of a 410 shotgun barrel below the regular barrel so you get nine pistol shots and then a shotgun blast. It's the same type of weapon that Jeb Stuart carried. You can get a nice reproduction from Regalos Line dancing and Western Store in the UK (from whence I stole this photo) for only 82 pounds.

They did include weapons from the Civil War up to the mid 1870's for this film.

* Bits and pieces that I missed in my earlier post - We did see several extras during the shoot. Several of these were period re-enactors who brought all of their own equipment and also helped the prop people in locating various items for use in the film. One extra that I saw was actually wearing armor that consisted of 2 in square pieces of steel tied together with rawhide strips and hung over him like a poncho. Not sure effective that would be, but it might be better than nothing.

In addition to climbing all over the large version of the CSS Virginia (aka ex-USS Merrimack) we also were given a tour of the Monitor-type iron clad. While the Virginia-type was in dry dock, the "Monitor" was actually built on a stripped down boat and would tool around the swamp area. The turret was incapable of movement since that held not only the wheelhouse be several pieces of film equipment as well. During the filming the boat was taken out and used in an assault on the dry docked iron-clad.

A few times we were warned to be on the lookout for gators that often wandered ashore during the production. I didn't spot any however.

One thing that struck me was the lighting. We were (as far as I knew) in the middle of nowhere, actually we were a few hundred yards from some houses and shrimp boats down the road, in the middle of the night and everything had that weird soft blue night-time glowy thing going that you see in the movies. This was due to huge lighting rigs that were either set up or suspended from cranes so everyone could see what they were doing during the shoot. There were similar lights set up in the woods across the water to give definition and outline to the to treeline and the shore. When they were shooting they would turn off different sets of lights to get the night sky behind the characters.

Finally, what scene did we see filmed? Quentin Turnbull is on the large dry docked vessel and he is giving a speech to his men, rallying them into a wild vengeful frenzy. The Union ship cruises in and flares, or some sort of airborne weaponry is launched against Turnbull. We also saw Jonah Hex poke his head over a fence and give a few lines. As far as "acting"? Nothing sounded or looked incredibly dramatic. I guess it really is all in the editing (according to my Eldest).

Thursday, May 13, 2010

A trip to the set of Jonah Hex

Okay, stick with me here, because this is going to be one heck of a long post. I wanted to break it up into parts but I wasn't allowed to, so it will be one huge long ramble. Here goes:
                                                        Josh Brolin as Jonah Hex
Last year I received an email from Warner Brothers publicity department asking if I would be interested in helping them advertise the new Jonah Hex movie.(?!) After double-checking the IP address to insure it wasn't a joke from my Eldest son, I replied in the affirmative, asking what all was entailed in 'helping advertise'.

They said that they usually try to get a fan blog involved in a movie and they would send me some pictures, maybe a film clip, and other goodies to post on my site. They also mentioned that at times they send folks out to the set for a visit. I chuckled, yeah, like THAT would ever happen.

A week later, that is exactly what happened. I got another email asking if I would like to be on the set either May 14th (Josh Brolin and John Malkovich) or May 19th (Josh Brolin and Megan Fox) . My jaw hit the keyboard in disbelief. WHAT?!?!?!?

I speedily replied that the first date would be best for me and shortly thereafter I was informed of my flight reservations and hotel accommodations. I was told that I would on the set and they would be shooting a night scene between Josh Brolin and John Malkovich. Not only would I watch them shoot, I would be able to partake in an interview with Brolin, Malkovich, Jimmy Hayden (the director), and various other folks working on the movie.

I was urged to get an audio recorder but I couldn't take any photos, ask for autographs, nor could I post anything on this site until WB gave me the go ahead (since they want to control the buzz about the movie). As we say in Oklahoma, It's their rodeo, so they get to load the horses into the chute!

Anyway, my flight took off Wed, May 13th at 0600 and I land in New Orleans around 10. I ride in an airport shuttle to the JW Marriot near the French Quarter and that was fun in and of itself.
                                                       Megan Fox as Leila

The van was very crowded and there were a couple of talkative guys in it. One from St. Louis and one from Staten Island. Staten Island says that he's in town with his best friend who just won Employee of the Year at their job. Staten Island says he's in town on business. They both start comparing hotels when the driver calls out "Who's staying at the JW?"

I raise my hand and Staten Island says "Wheee, what did that set you back a night?"

I hesitate, "I don't really know, I'm not paying for it."

"Really? Who is?"

"Warner Brothers."

You could have heard a pin drop in that van! St. Louis asks what I'm doing in town for WB. I tell that that I'm doing some publicity on a movie they are shooting.

Really? What movie?

"Jonah Hex." Well, they want to know who's in it and I start to tell them. When I get to Megan Fox St. Louis hollers at his buddy "Hey, Bill? You go on without me. Me and my new best friend...What's your name?"


"..Dwayne here are gonna be hanging out with Megan Fox!"

About that time Staten Island wants to know who I write for. "Well," I say, "I really don't. I have a blog about this comic book character in the film..."

"Wait wait wait. Youse gots this blog thing?"


"And they sees it and calls youse?"

"Yeah, pretty much."

"And how are you gonna be handlin your click-through things? Youse gonna get some money offa all this traffic? Youse know what youse need?"

"Uhhh, what?"

"A manager. I can be a great manager for youse to be sure the money comes your way. I'm used to dealing with lowlifes like these."

"That's okay. I think I can handle myself. Thanks."

"Well, just give me a call, I can make things happen."

The rest of the ride was about the same with me talking about the Jonah Hex film and what all was supposed to happen once I hit town.

I spent most of Wed walking around the French Quarter and I took a trolley ride into the Garden District to take photos in the Lancaster Cemetery. While I was in the cemetery I noticed that the area was overgrown and looked neglected. Walking further into the cemetery I saw a sign stating that the area wouldn't be mowed until film production was complete on May 29th. Wow, looks like I accidentally stumbled onto a location for the Jonah Hex film!

Thursday was when the set visit would take place but I didn't have email access and hadn't heard anything from anyone regarding the visit. I was getting pretty antsy by noon and dug out a hard copy of an email that listed the names of the journalists. I rang the front desk and asked to be connected to the first name I saw.

Speaking with that gentleman, he said that he hadn't heard anything yet but it would probably be later that evening. I had some lunch and walked around the Warehouse district and while doing so I stumbled onto some shooting for The Expendables. Snapping some pics of New Orleans I kept walking around town and was getting rung out from the humidity so I head back to the hotel, shower and take a nap.

Around 4 I get a call from the publicist in charge of our group saying that everyone is meeting for dinner in the hotel and we'll head out to the set afterward. I get ready and wait for dinner.

I head down to the steakhouse and find a group of young folks milling about (I'm talking 20's and early 30's) and I learn that they are the journalists. I introduce myself and shake hands (one of them stating that handshaking was 'old school'. Hell, I'm 48. I have jackets older than these guys and was probably married before they were born). One guy insists on a fist bump and I oblige. But I explode it. When he doesn't, I say "You don't bump and boom? That's old school." and head into the restaurant.

We get a table and sit down and there is a little talk about my blog and Jonah Hex, but most of their talk is shop talk, what movies they have seen, what stars they have interviewed, what sets they have visited. I listen politely and a few times I get included in the conversation. They do give me some pointers about how they take turns asking questions and everyone will get a chance.

After dinner they load us up into a coach bus and we go pick up John Gallagher, Jr. who we get to interview and then we head down Bourbon St. to pick up Will Arnett and they will both ride with us out to the set (more on that later). The coach ride is about 30 minutes out into a swamp area/gravel road/residential/shrimp boat launch and we arrive on the set.

Getting off the bus I can see the night lit up and can hear men shouting. Straining to see, I spy what looks like a rock fort but past that are two large smokestacks!?! As we get closer we can make out that the smokestacks are part of a large ironclad boat that is in dry dock and the filming is taking place on top. We get closer, winding through all the trailers and equipment, walk through the small rock fort and then we see the huge monstrosity that is the dry docked ironclad.

I'm trying to keep my jaw from hanging open. There are a dozen of so extras on the boat with Malkovich, the cameras, and all the movie crew. There are tons of prop crates, boxes and prop equipment around the boat and there are some large tubes running into the nearby swamp and it appears they are pumping smoke into the water so that it bubbles up out of the water.

We are guided to a canopy structure near the bow of the boat and there are several monitors under the canopy, showing us what is going on the deck of the boat. A few minutes later we are joined by Jimmy Hayward and we talk for a bit prior to the interview. Jimmy is talking about how he read Hex back in the WWT days and brings up the issue where Jonah's dog saves his life, and Jonah ends up taking the dog to a doctor and tosses the patient currently being attended to out the window. I mention that was back in Weird Western Tales #14 and Iron Jaws was the wolf's name.

Jimmy also mentions that they have had folks from DC out to the set, including Jimmy Palmiotti as well as John Albano. I politely mention that Mr. Albano passed away a few years prior, and Jimmy says that they had his family out. I ask if Michael Fleisher had been contacted and Jimmy leans back talks to a publicist, she tells him "No" and he tells her to get on it. (Sadly, as far as I can determine, they never did contact Mr. Fleisher, even after I sent them his contact information, with his permission, of course.)

After the interview with Jimmy Hayward, we talked to one of the producers, the set director, got a tour of the floating ironclad as well as getting to crawl all over the large dry docked boat. Then we interviewed John Malkovich.

                                                       John Malkovich as Quentin Turnbull

There was a long wait due to some shooting changes and we all walked down to the mess tent where we had dinner (I think that was around midnight or after) and then we strolled back to wait for Josh Brolin. During the wait I was wandering around and one of the folks asked if I was with the journalists.

I laughed because I have never thought of myself as a journalist, but I admitted that I was with them but I was just a blogger. The guy asked if I was the fan blogger and when I confessed to being said 'fan blogger' he said, "You would not believe how many times Jimmy has had us read your stuff to look up pictures so we could get a feel for this film." He introduced himself as the 'Extras Director' which is not directing the extra actors, but the director for the DVD extras ('making of' type stuff, bloopers and such.) and he asked if I had a business card.

My wife had made up a bunch of cards for me to hand out (just in case) so I handed him one and he said that he might be in touch, depending on what type of extra features were needed for the DVD. Immediately I had visions of being billed as "Jonah Hex historian" on a DVD extra feature. We chatted a little longer and then I headed on back to the boat.

When folks say that movies are a lot of standing around, they aren't kidding. And while you're standing around in a night time swamp, you drink a lot more water than you would expect. And when you drink a lot more water than you would expect, you end up having to head for the latrine trailer, standing in line between two cowboys, and when you get back to where you're supposed to be, you learn that the interview with Josh Brolin has already started. (Holy Crap!)

I only missed the introductions and the first question, but the other reporters helped me fill in the blanks (Thanks guys and gal).

After that we were allowed to wander around and talk to whomever we could find which included the make-up guy as well as the guy in charge of weapons. I'll have little bits from them next week when I get that transcribed.

We got back to the hotel around 0400 (if I remember, it IS kinda fuzzy) and since I don't like flying in the afternoon (chance of thunderstorms in Oklahoma can destroy a fine trip) I ended up getting to my early morning flight back to OKC on time, but very very tired.

                                                        Michael Fassbender as Burke

Having never done interviews before, I have no idea what to highlight, what to cull, what interests folks reading this blog. Therefore, I present here in all their glory, all the interviews.

John Gallagher, Junior - Bus interview

Will Arnett and John Gallagher, Junior - Bus interview

Jimmy Hayward - Interview

John Malkovich - Interview

Josh Brolin - Interview

On a final note, I want to thank everyone at Warner Brothers and the cast and crew of Jonah Hex. You guys made the dreams of this fanboy come true. Also, a big thank you to the other journalists on the trip for helping out a newbie blogger with all the transcribing (in no particular order):

Todd from CHUD
Steve from Collider
Drew from (Crap! I forgot where Drew was from. Sorry, Drew!)
Jenna from JoBlo
Jeff from BloodyDisgusting
Joe from FearNet
Kyle from Comic Book Resources

Whenever WB makes a Scalphunter film, you guys give me a call and I'll bring you up to speed on that character as well.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


You want to be here tomorrow, shortly after noon Central time. Don't ask why, just trust me on this one, ok?

See ya then.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Frank Frazetta - 1928 - 2010

Frank Frazetta passed away today at the age of 82. This man's artwork was truly legendary and I have nothing to add to all the words that will said about him. I can, however, post some ads from TV Guide that he did for the original Battlestar Galactica back in 1976: (I did sell these a few years ago on ebay for about $10 each, iirc)

For extra grins read the listing for the Mary Tyler Moore variety show with David Letterman as part of her comedy group. Other good names in there as well.

Thursday, May 06, 2010

Jonah Hex finally makes it to Marvel/DC Parody

The sheer genius of ItsJustSomeRandomGuy has finally recognized the upcoming Jonah Hex film and we get to see Jonah go toe to toe with Tony "the whore" Stark.

Of course, if you haven't ever seen this guy's work, you have a couple years of greatness to catch up on. Kiss your afternoon of working good-bye

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Hex #8 "The Shooting Gallery"

HEX #8 Apr 1986
"The Shooting Gallery"
Michael Fleisher, story - Ran Wagner and Carlos Garzon, art - Denys Cowan and Dick Giordano, cover

Well, the hovo eventually ran out of fuel, but Jonah Hex and Stiletta Borsten managed to land it safely. After getting precise directions as to what type of fuel they need, Jonah head out on foot to the next town. Eventually Jonah makes it to the next berg and ends up at Jameson's Auto Parts. Jameson says he doesn't have that kind of fuel, but he might be able to salvage some from an old wreck out back. Jonah heads down the street to a bar to wait until the fuel is available.
Jonah doesn't even make it to the bar before three thugs step up to take all his soames. He throws his wallet over the head of one and then opens fire while they are distracted. The thugs return fire, but Jonah does the drop, roll and shoot, ending up plugging all three. However, one of them jumps up, grabs the wallet and jumps on his motorcycle. Hex realizes that he has been hoodwinked by body armor once again, takes aim, and CLICK. Outta ammo.

The thug drives off as a crowd gathers, astonished at Jonah's marksmanship. Jonah mentions that he is now flat broke and one of the crowd mentions that anyone that can handle a firearm the way Hex does can earn some easy money. He just needs to go see Mabel at Lovey-Dovey Firearms Supply.

Jonah beats a path down the street to that establishment and inquires about the 'easy money'. Mabel asks to see Jonah's weapon and is astonished to see the fantastic condition of his Smith and Wesson .38-40. She offers to show him a .44 auto Mag but Jonah spies a pair of .357 Magnum Ruger Blackhawks. Mabel says that he should be able to easily find ammo for those. Jonah is examining the pistols and asks Mabel why she has no security working is such a dangerous business. Mable points to what appears to be a small cannon mounted on a swivel hooked to a track that runs the length of the store. She tells Hex to stand perfectly still as she tosses an empty box in the air and pushes a button on a strap in her palm. The gun swivels, tracks the box and then blows it to pieces. Mabel then invites Hex out back to try the Blackhawks on the outdoor range.

Of course, we go elsewhere to find Stanley Harris picking himself up out of a swamp where the Time Machine dumped him. He tries to get his bearings to find out if his is really in 1968 Viet Nam. Suddenly an arrow slams into a nearby tree and Harris finds himself staring down a Feudal Japanese archer.

Behind Mabel's gun store, she is showing Hex the target range. The range consists of moving targets that pop up and fire back a beam of light. Jonah guns down the first few targets and then Mabel turns the range onto high speed. Jonah is just getting warmed up and hits every target perfectly. Mabel is astonished and tells Jonah that he can compete is a slightly more, uh, sophisticated version of the target range and score a lot of soames. Mabel offers to spot the entry fee and they will split the winnings.

Jonah takes the offer and heads off to the Shooting Gallery. The place is like a bookie's dream with dozens of folks placing bets and watching several TV screens. The owner of the gallery tells Hex that he has to follow the arrows on the floor, can't double back, kill all the targets and he wins, if he takes a hit he loses. Jonah heads in to what is a large deserted factory.

Right off the bat he shoots a robotic target on a catwalk and then plugs one popping out of a floor trapdoor. As he continues along the path, he comes upon a conveyor belt that has a target heading towards him. Suddenly the rotten floor fails beneath Hex and he falls to the floor, barely avoiding the shotgun blast from the target. It's then that Hex realizes that these targets don't just shoot beams of light and that he has been hoodwinked.

He hears the doors lock far behind him and in the betting area the action heats up as Jonah has 500 - 1 odds of getting out. As Jonah continues on he avoids dual floor flamethrowers and then climbs into a service elevator. Back in the betting area, one of the workers notifies the head boss that they have trouble since Hex is getting farther than anyone else.

The Shooting Gallery dispatches some human thugs to get rid of Hex and as Jonah keeps taking out the targets. The Gallery owner hits a switch that kills all of the TV screens. He explains to the betting crowd that it's a technical failure and they are working on it.

Inside, Jonah has come upon an area that looks like a slaughterhouse with an overhead conveyor belt comprised of large meathooks. As the hooks travel, there is a target hanging from one of them and it opens up with a machine gun. Hex dives for cover and waits, determining that that the target is firing about fifty rounds with a one second pause between bursts. Jonah dives out and takes out the target, but he is suddenly taken down by one of the human snipers dispatched by the Gallery.

Jonah falls to the ground and the sniper stands up and gloats. Just then Jonah sits up and shoots the man from the catwalk. The sniper falls backwards through a window, the other sniper sees this and comes running. He rounds the corner and opens fire on Jonah Hex's body laying on the floor. Sadly for him, Jonah has placed the target on the floor and taken the targets place on the meat hook. Jonah finishes the job with one shot.

Back in the betting area, Jonah Hex kicks open the door to the amazement of the owner and the cheers of the betting crowd. Hex takes the soames, and knocks the snot out of the owner. The crowd rushes Jonah asking for his autograph.

Back at Mable's she is very surprised to see Jonah as he strides in, belts her across the chops with the sack of soames. He then grabs her trigger switch, nabs his share of the soames and helps himself to an arsenal of weapons and ammo. As he leaves he is secretly watched by two men in an alley.

Shortly Jonah is heading back to the hovo on a motorcycle that he purchased but he finds that Stiletta is gone and it appears that there has been a struggle.

Statistics for this Issue
Men killed by Jonah - 4
Running Total - 464 (428 past, 36 future)
Jonah's Injuries - Shot in the left shoulder
Timeline - Still the same day as previous issue. Still day three? Or should we suppose that Jonah and Stiletta traveled for an evening prior to this issue and call this day four?

I enjoyed this issue quite a bit because there was a lot of action and we got another glimpse into the working of this society. For some reason the 80's version of the future was always a lot of fun because how far can society degrade but still hold together? That's always a fine line to walk.

I'm glad to see that we have Jonah dealing with the semi-small towns in the future, rather than just the Needle and the dangers in the Seattle desert. Of course, Jonah eventually gets to the larger city and things get even more complex.

Next Issue: Jonah continues the hunt for Stiletta and takes on the dangers of the Gated Community!!!