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YMMV / Jonah Hex

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The Comic Books

  • Complete Monster: William "Sawbones" Zimmerman was a brief but memorable foe of Jonah Hex. A former doctor during the Civil War, Zimmerman made a name for himself via horrible experiments and live dissections of prisoners of war, with his apprentices and himself also carrying out the same vivisections on blacks. After the war, Sawbones takes to kidnapping and murdering innocent young women without even the pretense it is for anything but enjoyment. When Hex falls into his hands, the doctor attempts to torture him to death as well, revealing he has a group of like-minded fellows he's trained that he intends to spread into the country, killing those they can via horrible means all in the name of twisted "science."
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  • Ensemble Dark Horse: A character with C-tier name recognition even at his best, Hex retains a fan following strong enough that even his abysmal solo movie couldn't dispel, due to both being one of the last Western characters left in American comics and his uncompromising grittiness, and DC Fans inevitably rejoice whenever a new adaptation of him is announced. His incarnation in Legends of Tomorrow is particularly popular, and even brought in a new wave of fans who were otherwise unfamiliar with the character.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: One issue has worried Hex checking out a cave for bears, and when he sighs in relief for finding none, he is immediately jumped by a cougar. It comes off like something out of a typical session of Red Dead Redemption.
  • Iron Woobie/Jerkass Woobie: Hex is not a nice guy, but given the sheer amount of horrible things that happen to him throughout his life through no fault of his own, it's not surprising his disposition's so sour.
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  • My Real Daddy: Michael Fleisher took over writing duties for the character from creator John Albano in 1974 and continued to write the character until 1987, when the character's series was canceled. Over this 13 year period he wrote at least 125 Hex stories over three series (Weird Western Tales, Jonah Hex and Hex), more than any other Hex writer. The Justin Gray/Jimmy Palmiotti writing team almost certainly count too, writing over 100 Hex issues from 2005 to '14.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: With The New 52 the fan-favorite Jonah Hex series was cancelled and replaced by All-Star Western. The name change came with a drastically new format and status quo: Instead of being a series of unconnected short stories featuring different artists it became ongoing story with a single artist and backup stories featuring other characters. The bigger change was the fact that Hex is now in Gotham, working with Amadeus Arkham. The fanbase was appropriately split over this. Those opposed claim the new series isn't as unique as the old one, loses the "western" feel (due to the Eastern, urban setting) and is a blatant attempt to cash-in on the Batman franchise. Proponents claim that after a six year run a change is welcome and that while it may have been a cash-in it worked, with All-Star selling much better than Jonah Hex did. Through all this, the fact that Gray and Palmiotti, at least, remained on the book was met with widespread relief, however.

The Film

  • Acceptable Targets: Southerners, at least if they're Confederate sympathizers.
  • Awesome Music: Provided by freaking Mastodon!
  • Big-Lipped Alligator Moment/Nightmare Fuel: There's a brief scene inside an arena where a street fight is being held, and one of the two fighters looks like - we kid you not - a cross between Gollum from The Lord of the Rings and a mountain lion.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Quentin Turnbull was once a high-ranking Confederate general who, after the events of Gettysburg, decided to show how "weak" the Union was by ordering entire hospitals and schools annihilated, leading one of Turnbull's own soldiers, Jonah Hex, to betray him, kill his son in self-defense, then turn him over to the Union. Escaping custody, Turnbull tracks down Hex and forces him to watch as he has his Dragon, Burke, burn the man's wife and son alive, before branding Hex's face and leaving him to die. Spending the next years creating a super weapon, Turnbull hijacks a train shipment after having the occupants killed, and uses the contents of the shipment to finish his weapon, then wiping out an entire town and its hundreds of residents to test it. Turnbull then plans to use his weapon to annihilate Washington, D.C. during the Independence Day celebration, killing the thousands of innocents attending, along with the President of the United States. Though at first seeming to genuinely care for his dead son, Quentin Turnbull quickly shed that aspect of his personality, showing that all he cared for was the complete annihilation of the current government of the United States, no matter how many innocents had to die in the process.
    • The aforementioned Burke is the psychotic Dragon of Turnbull, and matches his boss's emotionless cruelty with sheer psychopathic sadism. Assisting Turnbull in all of his crimes, Burke personally, and happily, burns Jonah Hex's wife and son alive, then holds Hex in place to be branded by Turnbull and left for dead. Fully aware, and approving, of Turnbull's plans to use his super weapon to wipe out thousands of innocents, Burke blows up an entire train to obtain parts for said weapon, killing the dozens of soldiers, citizens, and children on board, and later massacres the population of a small town to acquire the ammunition for Turnbull's super weapon. Kidnapping Hex's Love Interest Lilah to use as a hostage, Burke takes sadistic glee in smacking her around; threatens innocents with death for kicks; and regularly taunts Jonah about his family's deaths. Dying while laughing at Hex's misfortune, Burke was a homicidal lunatic who seemed to only work with Turnbull to satisfy his lust for sadism and mass murder.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Really, the nearly the whole damn cast as most of them, especially Josh Brolin, would go on to do much more critically and commercially successful superhero films regarded as leagues above Jonah Hex.
  • Special Effect Failure: While Jonah's disfigurement is somewhat of an impossibility to recreate through makeup, the film's attempt is pretty unimpressive to say the least.
  • Values Resonance: An anti-government terrorist plotting to blow up a federal building? Where have we heard of that before....?


Example of: