The latest of AccentUK‘s comics anthologies is based on a theme, just like the previous Robots. As you might guess from the title, it’s based around the old West, taking its inspiration from a range of sources from John Wayne, through Clint Eastwood and Sergio Leone, to more recent forays into the genre like Deadwood.
The genre is prone to cliché, and the artists and writers submitting comics to this collection are clearly hell bent on avoiding this. So we get a lot of mixed genre pieces: left-over robots, lots of zombies, and even vox pops. Some are serious, some pay heavy homage to the likes of Leone, some have their tongues in the cheek, and others are just plain weird.
Like most anthologies, it’s a mixed bag. There’s probably something here to please most people some of the time: things that some will consider genius and others might consider rubbish. While the writing is consistently high, the art is more varied, with some artists perhaps making it through the filtration based on the strength of their writing or partnerships with writers, or possibly their pacing and layout skill, rather than their ability to create brilliant artwork.
It’s worth a look unless you really don’t like cowboy stories, in which case there’s little point in bothering. The Western isn’t as popular now as it has been in the past, making the choice of genre a brave one for editors West and Mathieson. However, I think they pull it off, giving their creators the chance to work in a relatively rare genre and to try to and do something different with it.
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