Another issue of All-Star Western, another chance for Jonah Hex to complain about Gotham: “Ah hate this city like poison.” You and me both, cowpoke. If you asked a group of loyal Hex readers (and I’m guessing that there were around 10,000 of them before DC’s 52 relaunch) none of them would have requested that Jonah Hex next star in a comic book that serves as an historical preamble to the Batman books. But that is what we have, as our favorite psychotic old west bounty hunter trudges through a sea of Dickensian crime and squalor in a 19th century Gotham City.
From a purely objective standpoint the book is actually pretty good, the writing is tight, and the art is excellent. I just keep wondering when it will follow the promise of the title and become a western. At least we have the three part backup stories in each issue, this month kicking off The Barbary Ghost, another revenge tale (see this blog post for more on that topic) in the Chinese slums of San Francisco. Wait, it’s another blood soaked urban tale. Oh how I miss the desert landscapes that Moritat used to draw in the last series.