cover image Kingsway West

Kingsway West

Greg Pak, Mirko Colak, and Wil Quintana. Dark Horse, $14.99 trade paper (112p) I

Part alternate-history western, part pure fantasy, Pak (World War Hulk) builds an American adventure around minority characters without having it seem like a vehicle for a political statement. At the center is the title character, the archetypal gunslinger with a dark past and a desire to put it behind him. In this case, though, he’s an Asian man. In the world of the story North America is divided up, with the West under control of warring Chinese and Mexican countries while the Northeast is dominated by the United States of New York and other areas are controlled by African-Americans, Confederates, and other groups. These factions are warring over a magical substance called Red Gold, but despite the largeness of the landscape, Pak keeps the story intimate, focusing on West’s personal quest and his relationships with two women, one Mexican, one African-American. Colak’s art serves the world-building well, walking a nice line between the Wild West archetypes and the new ideas brought in by the fantasy elements. (June)