Thursday, June 26, 2014

All Star Western #32 Review

Written by: Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray
Art by: Staz Johnson and Fabrizio Fiorentino
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: June 26, 2014

I Call Shotgun

Let's get it out in the light right off the bat.  All Star Western is ending in August and I'm pretty pissed off about it.  Jimmy Palmiotti and Justin Gray have given us so many great Jonah Hex stories before and during the New 52, but everything must come to an end.  Even when that something is an awesome character driven Western that is unique and so good.  While All Star Western may not fit squarely into the New 52 concept, everything is better with Jonah Hex.  To finish off their run of over one hundred issues, Palmiotti and Gray are getting back to the basics and giving the readers a Western story. As in, the Old West.  No time traveling, no Men of Steel or Batmen in these parts.  Nope, just Jonah and Tallulah drinking, swearing and trying not to kill each other while collecting a bounty. Welcome back All Star, it's so sad to see you go.

Jonah and Tallulah are aiming to collect themselves a bounty.  Of course, everything with these two is bound to be interesting and it is. They get Amos Blackthorne and head off to turn him in.  The first town they come across has a salon with plenty of whisky, but no Sheriff.  One out of two ain't bad and the two start drinkin' and cussin' and yelling and cussin'.  The book has officially returned to the Old West, but Jonah and Tallulah's luck quickly goes south.

Palmiotti and Gray know what they are doing.  After the detour this book took, they are back in their comfort zone.  I could read a book with Jonah and Tallulah drinking and yelling at each other page after page and love every minute of it.  We get that here, but also a great story of betrayal, greed and a lucky shotgun.  The shit is really going to hit the fan on multiple fronts and levels in the final two issues and I can't wait to sit back and watch the mayhem.

My only major gripe this month is that I want more Madam 44.  I know Jonah will not be gone forever, but I also hope to see Madam's otherworldly adventures in the near future.

The art of Staz Johnson and Fabrizio Fiorentino is gritty and great.  I love the look of Tallulah Black and while scar-less Jonah is a bit generic (and too pretty for my liking), everything else looks great.  I'm sure that Jonah will "acquire" his look back in the next couple of issues and then the art will be even closer to perfect.

Bits and Pieces:

All Star Western is ending soon and while I'll miss one of my favorite books, I'm glad Palmiotti and Gray are ending it with such a classic Western tale.  Staz Johnson and Fabrizio Fiorentino give the proceedings the proper look and make me even sadder this book is short for this world.  Do yourself a favor and go back to the beginning and enjoy a great run by two of my favorite writers in comics.  It's well worth the time and effort.  Highly recommended.


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