And Heeeeeere’s Johnny!

Right you are George!  Well, how foolish of me to have counted Ol’ Johnny Lone Elk out of the story.  True, they won’t be looking for you, will they??  The way Martin Riggs was thought to be dead and came out of nowhere in the first (and best thank you very much) Lethal Weapon

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Talk about none worse for wear!  It’s like they landed on a pillow top mattress!

I must comment again on how the traditional markers are not being observed in James Allen’s Trailverse…  If you had placed Johnny in a line up in the Dodd/Elrod days, we would have immediately assumed that he was bad- to the bone.  Long hair, stubble, we’d assume that this guy was up to no good!!  But we can’t judge a book by its cover now, can we?!

Johnny? Johnny who?

I know that over the years Mark has been known to lack empathy, but this takes it beyond the pale…  No sense in calling yourself an “Old Friend” of Mark’s when in the direst of circumstances he simply writes you off…  Sort of like that scene in Austin Powers when Mustafa (played by Will Ferrell- ha!) falls victim to the tipping chair that throws you into a burning pit to supposedly die and all you end up with is getting badly burned…

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Pray?  Since when did you become a man of God, Mark?  Your faith lies only in your own invincibility and the fact that you have a comic strip named for you, which guarantees you about 10,000 lives…

What now? I think I’ll just keep talking…

…talking up a storm, that is…  Ha!

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Notice how quiet Baldy is now…  letting Mark prattle on.  He doesn’t want another dose of Trailian Justice…  But then Mark seems to have lost his touch- usually the fisticuffs are what ends a story, but I guess not now…

So as the wormhole opens upon the prairie, we have Sheriff Don making his way, the FBI staying home, and Cherry at Lost Forest not even slightly concerned about the FBI calling her…  And Lone Elk given up for dead.

On the horse, off the horse… What th-?

It’s clear that “Lady” is back up on the horse, but it was equally clear that she wasn’t just a minute ago…  (two days or so in Trail-time…) And Mark, since when do you start talking like you are from t deep south?  Y’all?  What the H’ell…

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Glad to see that Blondie is able to keep her coiffure in order… despite the falling rain and gale for winds…

Ah, Mister Trail…

Since Mark still doesn’t know anyone’s name, besides his own and Johnny’s, he has to resort to “Lady” which is not a very good descriptor for one who double-crosses and wields s gun…

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I expect Blondie to now turn on Baldy, given that his sense of timing and level of patience continues to be maddeningly off…  I mean, ho long did that fight last? 2 or 3 seconds?  And he’s kvetching about how long it took her to fire a shot across Mark’s prow??

Wasn’t onto you?!  Surely, lady, you have not met the likes of Mark Trail!  (Mr. Trail to you!)  He plays dumb, and at times (mostly) pulls it off… but I guess he was onto you the whole time.  I wonder what tipped him off??

Where’s the gun?

There’s the gun!!

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Suddenly, shots are fired and the lighting comes up and Blondie reveals herself for what she is!  A no-good-nick!  A Baddie, a regular Mata Hari…  Mark looks like he is ready to go low in panel three- the tackling skills that put many a crook down…  Unfortunately Mark’s brain right now is a study in cognitive dissonance…  “What th-…  a woman?  THE woman that I figured on having to save?  And whose advances I would have to fend off, to whom I would have to explain that I am a happily married man?”  Poor Mark… He just wasn’t made for these times…

Oh, Sweet Release!!

How long has it been, boys and girls?  How long has it been since Mark was allowed to unleash the fists of fury??  A left AND a right…

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This has been a loooong time coming, though, right??  A slow burn- the likes of which we have never seen in the Trailverse- to the point where we all figured Mark had turned in his man-badge and was just going to be put-upon for the rest of time… I love the monologue as he’s delivering the haymakers!  And just look at the spit flying in the second panel… seriously.  I can’t get enough of this…

Yea… See? Or I’ll shoot the girl…

Aren’t we all just a wee bit tired (OK, very tired) of Grumpy McGrumperson’s snarl?

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What on earth did Mark say this time to make Baldy cross?  Apparently simply answering questions is enough to set him off…  “Do you think he’s still alive down there?”  “You stay here – I’ll go check!” is seemingly more than he can handle… Of course I’d be pissed too, if I had raindrops pelting my bald head and running down my face…  At least Trail has HelmetHair, guaranteed to keep his scalp dry, if nothing else…

Uhmmm… Part horse, part cat??

So… I guess the “trick riding” skills have come in handy here…  somehow Johnny and his steed managed to complete their revolutions on the way down and while not exactly landing on their feet, seem only slightly worse for wear…

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KA-THUD… is that the sound a horse makes when landing on its side and breaking ribs?  We all know the time honored UUNNGH! The sound of a Trailian man landing on his backside after a plunge off a cliff… again no harm done…

Animals WERE harmed in the making of this production…

Well this sucks.  I don’t think Johnny’s ride is going to survive this tumble…  sort of like the scene in the movie The Revenant…  We’ll have to see how Johnny makes out.  I see foot in stirrup, but that’s about it…

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But thank you, Captain Obvious, for making sure we all know what is going on…  We’ll have to see Monday how this all turns out…