I love Jonah Hex. It’s edgy, gritty and always full of amazing art. This creative team crafts issue after issue of atmosphere and mood that feels like an old west movie. Yet, it manages to use modern storytelling sensibilities.
I often am amazed how a writing team can switch gears so drastically during the month. Power Girl is very upbeat and fun, while Hex has such a dark tone. Both are excellent offerings. I adore how easily Hex works in a larger arc or in the “done in one” format.
Issue 52 is a story full of lies and half truths. Most of these paint the picture of a world where such lies are necessary for survival. Hex turns up on the doorstep of a woman with a bullet wound. He doesn’t completely reveal how he got it. It turns out later we learn that a boy shot him while trying to rob him. Hex had to kill the boy to escape with his life.
This of course sends the family of killers after him. They are basically the “mob” of the swamp an no one in the area defies them for fear of repercussions.
Hex’s escape is very well put together. They are trailing him and he sends his horse running off to try and throw the men hunting him off his trail. They turn out to be too smart so he hides in the swamp, where there is a danger of gators getting him. “Too Mean to Die” is a great title for the issue because Hex takes down a Gator, even with his bullet wound and manages to survive the encounter.
This takes us back to the present, where the woman who rescues him realizes that the “mob” will come to her house now looking for him. This forces her to kick Hex out a moment too late and she has to defend her child from the men. Her lies are revealed as they turn out to be her family.
Imagine if Hex had told her the truth about the boy? Would she have killed him? Would she have realized the boy was trying to rob him and let the man go? The old west was often a hard world and this creative team always delivers. If you aren’t reading Jonah Hex, pick it up. It’s really easy to jump on this book and it is well worth the ride. With the movie coming this summer, there has never been a better time to enjoy this great, well produced comic.