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Longbox Junk The Lone Ranger (Vol 3) Part 2: Issues 13 25

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Here we are. . .the end of the trail for DC's post-apocalyptic Jonah Hex.  The final 6 issues.

I have to admit, they were a little hard to get through. But giving people comic book reviews they never asked for is what I do. So let's get it done!

HEX

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After a pretty good start, can DC's post-apocalyptic fish out of water Jonah Hex series manage to stay on the rails for another 6 issues? Let's find out!

HEX

DC (1985 - 1987)

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Face front, true believers! It's another Retro Review edition of Longbox Junk as we take a trip back to 1967 for some Merry Marvel Mutant Madness, guest starring the one and only Wisecracking Wallcrawler, The Sensational Spider-Man! 

Sit back and enjoy another comic review nobody ever asked for, brought to you by the Astounding Authorship (AND Humongous Humility) of yours truly!

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Their nuclear ravaged world NEEDED a hero. . .what it got was. . .HEX

THE SCENE: A meeting room at DC Comics.  The year is 1985.  Three members (who I won't name) of DC's Editorial and Executive staff sit around a table.  Smoke drifts through the air.

MAN #1: (coughs) So, anyway. . .you guys seen Road Warrior?

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As far as Marvel is concerned, EVERYTHING is better with a little Wolverine in it.  

Let's take a trip back to 1995 and put that theory to the test, shall we?

WOLVERINE/GAMBIT: VICTIMS

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Take a look at any "Worst" or "Insane" list involving either Marvel or The Punisher and you'll come across a strange time in Punisher's history when he had killed himself and come back to life with heavenly (READ: Super) powers given to him by an angel (who was responsible for the death of Frank Castle's family and him becoming The Punisher) so that both he and The Punisher could seek redemption in the eyes of Heaven. . .

Needless to say, this new status quo was NOT popular with the fans.  Hell, even the much-maligned "Franken-Castle" arc lasted longer.  Punisher as a heavenly avenger lasted exactly two 4 issue mini's and a handful of references here and there later on.

This is the second of those mini's and the last time the comics world would see The Punisher in undead heavenly avenger mode.  I don't have all the issues of the mini that introduced this idea, but for what it's worth, from what I've read this is the better of the two.

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As far as popular entertainment goes, "The Western" is a genre that has all but disappeared.  Historical research and general hindsight has pretty much washed away the shine that used to glow from the legendary figures of the old west, showing them to be deeply flawed (and for the most part, mentally disturbed) individuals on BOTH sides of the law.  The strife between brave cowboys and vile redskins has been revealed as government-sponsored genocide.  The heroes have become the villains.

But that hasn't always been the case.  There was a time in popular American entertainment when the Cowboy was king.  Western movies, T.V. shows, books, and comics were dominated by tales of the wild west.  Men of stern character fought to tame a lawless frontier full of outlaws and savage indian tribes. 

 The "Golden" age of  western entertainment is arguably the 1950's.  Classic movies such as The Big Country, High Noon, 3:10 to Yuma, Shane, Rio Bravo, and many more ruled the box office.  Gunsmoke, Rawhide, The Rifleman, Wagon Train, Maverick, The Lone Ranger, and others were the most popular shows on television.  Songs by Gene Autry, Roy Rogers, Tex Ritter, and other "Singing Cowboys" were all over the radio.  

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Captain Phasma has been hyped up by the promotions for both The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi as some sort of awesome and mysterious villain. . .and she DOES look badass with her chrome stormtrooper armor and flowing black cape.

BUT. . .

Let's face it.  The hype isn't the truth.  Captain Phasma is pretty much the new Star Wars movie's Boba Fett.  Sure, she LOOKS awesome, but she has what. . .five minutes total screen time over two movies?  That and SPOILER she dies (maybe) a weak-ass death in The Last Jedi, just like Boba Fett went out like a chump in Return of The Jedi.

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And so we finally come to the last batch of Topps' X-Files run.  Fair warning, folks. . .it ain't pretty.

This series was never that good to begin with.  It has its moments here and there, but generally speaking it's been mediocre at best up until this point.  From here to the end of things it gets pretty bad.

These issues coincided with the general collapse of the 90's speculator comic market, and specifically the collapse of Topps Comics in 1998.  They also came out when the X-Files T.V. show's popularity began to wane.  The show was still high in the ratings, but nowhere near what it had been.

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Welcome to another "Retro Review", where I take a look at some of the older comics in my collection that might be a little more valuable than my regular Longbox Junk, but would still be considered filler in the boxes of any SERIOUS comic collector. 

This week, we're going to crack the plastic on the first issue of a short-lived Marvel series (9 issues) from the early 70's that seems to have been created based on the theory of "If this one thing is awesome, and so is this thing. . .then another thing combining the two will be TWICE as awesome!"

In Combat Kelly's case, the two awesome things they tried to combine were the long-running Marvel war comic "Sgt. Fury and His Howling Commandos" and the popular 1967 movie "The Dirty Dozen".  Unfortunately, it seems that the combination didn't work out so well, and Combat Kelly and The Dirty. . .er. . .DEADLY Dozen lasted only just over a year (it was a bi-monthly book).  

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