Overview

The Sixth Gun #5

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The Sixth Gun #5

Credits

  • Words: Cullen Bunn
  • Art: Brian Hurtt
  • Publisher: Oni Press
  • Price: $3.99
  • Release Date: Oct 20, 2010

As the first arc in Oni Press’ supernatural western The Sixth Gun careens towards its conclusion, Drake Sinclair and company arrive at the Maw, the site of their last stand versus the undead Oliander Bedford Hume’s terrible posse. Creators Cullen Bunn and Brian Hurtt tighten the noose on their fellowship of unlikely protagonists with unexpected twists and infuse their homespun horror-western saga with an increasingly epic tone as the true evil fueling Hume’s power gradually comes to light.

In a previous review of The Sixth Gun, I compared the tone of the series to a word-of-mouth story told in a dusty old saloon over watered-down whiskey and harsh cheroots. In this penultimate issue of their first arc, Bunn and Hurtt elevate their tall tale to the status of legend. It’s hard to pinpoint one defining aspect that signaled this transition but with higher stakes comes a greater sense of urgency and danger.

Upon arriving at the legendary Maw, Hume’s personal prison built to house the worst deserters, thieves, and murderers in the West, Sinclair and company discover the inmates have taken over the grotesque complex, toiling to uncover the old man’s precious treasure for themselves in his absence. Becky Montcrief, current bearer of the Sixth Gun, hints that the treasure, which can only be unlocked by all six infernal pistols, contains something far older, darker, and more evil than simple material wealth.

It’s this upping of the ante that helps catapult Bunn and Hurtt’s story into the realm of legend. As the final battle with Hume’s posse looms, Sinclair and his companions stand firm in their resolve to thwart the old bastard’s return to power, despite the prime motivating factor driving their quest having just evaporated. As the stakes increase, Sinclair and friends rise to the occasion, even if on the surface selfish survival instincts drive their agenda, rather than pure selflessness.

As the sun sets on this opening arc, it will be interesting to see how the cards fall for Hume, Sinclair, and the defenders of the Maw. Once the dust settles, Bunn and Hurtt will have established a new status quo and find themselves in the enviable position of having a near-infinite number of possible paths to explore in the development of their cast and setting. One thing is for certain: it will be a fun, exciting journey into the unknown as they endeavor to blaze new trails in their legend of the Sixth Gun.

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