Got a new comic called MIGHTY MARVEL WESTERNS: WESTERN LEGENDS this week. It's a one-shot with three all-new tales of the Mighty Marvel West featuring Indians.
The stories all have good artwork, but the writing is a mixed bag. Here's how the lineup fared (with summaries courtesy of Marvel's marketing info):
At first I thought writer Fred Van Lente had merely misappropriated Captain Jack's name. But talk of volcanic caves and lava tubes seems to indicate the story is occurring in Modoc territory. Apparently Van Lente thought it was okay to place a New Mexico tribe in a Northern California setting for the sake of storytelling.
But it gets worse. The actual setting is identified as Lost Mesa, a place that sounds as if it belongs in the Southwest. The disputants are attacked by a catlike man-beast named Heart-Like-Fire. Heart-Like-Fire appears to be an ancestor of Puma (Thomas Fireheart), a Marvel anti-hero of Native American descent.
Heart-Like-Fire says he's protecting Lost Mesa, home of the fictional Kisani tribe. Puma's tribe has never been named—probably to avoid an embarrassing mistake—but it supposedly resides in Arizona. So where does that leave us?
The Acoma Indians of New Mexico, led by Cap'n Jack of the Modoc, are hiding in volcanic Northern California on Lost Mesa in the Southwest, which is inhabited by the Kisani ancestors of Puma the anti-hero of Arizona. All clear?
An extra demerit for the cover, which shows a ferocious Red Wolf next to the caption "Savage Warriors!" The linkage isn't explicit, but the implication is clear. It's usually the Indians, not the cowboys, who get labeled as savages.
More on WESTERN LEGENDS
Update on proto-Puma
Comic books featuring Indians
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