Monday, August 5, 2013


"...and I'm gonna put down a hurtin' that the livin', the dead and the unborn ain't never gonna forget."

I read A MAN NAMED HAWKEN in one sitting this afternoon. This trade paperback, published by IDW in 2012, collects the entire six-issue mini-series (and more) by Timothy and Ben Truman. The father and son duo do superlative work on this "tale of western horror". Son Ben is the writer and comics veteran dad Tim provides the outstanding pencils, all lovingly rendered in glorious black-and-white.

Kitchell Hawken is one tough old coot. Scalped and left for dead by his former outlaw gang, Hawken survives and begins searching the American southwest with one thing on his mind: vengeance. Hawken can see and speak to the spirits of those he's killed in his long and bloody life (and their numbers are legion). He rides a blind mule and has a feisty bulldog named Caramba for a companion.

Hawken is after members of The Ring, a criminal outfit that has it's greasy fingers in many pies. The trail leads to Shanghai Mary, an Oriental woman who has crooked schemes and plans of her own in play. Hawken is tracked by the murderous Sombre, whose horribly disfigured facial features resemble a wax statue of Michael Jackson left out far too long in the noonday sun.

There are many gunfights and they're all imaginatively staged and choreographed. There's also no shortage of blood, brains, guts and other bodily fluids spilled across the pages. There's nudity, sex and foul language by the wagonload, all of which makes A MAN NAMED HAWKEN adults only material.
A MAN NAMED HAWKEN is down and dirty and grim and gritty. It's a Spaghetti Western by way of WEIRD TALES magazine. Both of the Trumans do a magnificent job of storytelling and they leave the ending wide open for more blood soaked adventures of Kitchell Hawken. Bring 'em on gents. I'm ready to saddle up and ride again anytime. Recommended.

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