Comic Review: The Sixth Gun #18

The Sixth Gun #18
Written by Cullenn Bunn
Illustrated by Brian Hurtt
Colors by Bill Crabtree
Letters by Douglas E. Sherwood
Design by Keith Wood
Published by Oni Press
Release Date: January 18, 2012
Cover Price: $3.99

If you are an avid comic book reader in 2012, you’re either one of these types of people:

1) You’ve never heard of The Sixth Gun,
2) You’ve heard it’s terrific, but you haven’t gotten around to it,
3) You’re reading and loving The Sixth Gun.

To that first group, it goes like this: In the wild west, after the Civil War, there exists six mystical guns with unique abilities. Becky Montcrief is a young woman who finds herself in possession of the sixth, most powerful of these weapons. Now she’s on the run from sinister forces trying to possess it and is aided by treasure hunter, Drake Sinclair, and few other allies.

If you’re in the second camp, let me try and talk about why it’s so popular. This is a bright, swashbuckling action/adventure that still convinces you there are dark, dangerous things about to crawl out of every corner. The heroes are always in boiling hot water while every set piece and side character is a moving part that keeps the plot twisting and turning. Brian Hurtt‘s art can pack a lot of information into a page, but also knows when to let the story breath. Colorist Bill Crabtree‘s palette always walks that line between creepy and fun. It’s over the top excitement much like the best Indiana Jones and Pirates of The Caribbean films, and it’s also very much in the comic book medium.

Finally, for those of you who are following the book: The Sixth Gun #18 is the beginning of the new arch: “A Town Called Penance.” Drake is being held captive by The Knights of Solomon, and Becky heads into the town in search of him. Her entrance is a swift reminder that while the book is chock full of ghosts and curses, mummys and armageddon, it’s all in the context of a tough-as-nails western. Writer Cullenn Bunn, in typical fashion, is holding his cards close to his chest at this stage. This is the rollercoaster car slowly being pulled up the tracks so that for the next 4 or 5 issues we’ll be speeding downhill.

I suppose I have to assume that there is a fourth type of comic book reader out there, someone who’s tried the book and found that it wasn’t their cup of tea. Sure, not everything is for everyone, but like those legendary guns they’re rarely discussed and even more rarely ever seen.

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