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Theresa DeLucci on Six-Guns and Strange Shooters: A Weird West Primer

Sunday, September 27th, 2015 | Posted by John ONeill

Six-Gun Snow White-smallYou know how we feel about the Weird Western here at Black Gate. It’s a neglected sub-genre with some terrific work that deserves a lot more attention.

Over at, Theresa DeLucci clearly feels the same way. She’s done a marvelous survey of some recent additions to the field in books, games, film, and music — including R.S. Belcher’s The Shotgun Arcana, Jonathan Maberry’s Deadlands: Ghostwalker, and John Joseph Adams’s great anthology Dead Man’s Hand. Here she is on Cat Valente’s short novel Six-Gun Snow White:

Similar to [Emma] Bull’s Territory, this fairytale of the half-Navajo daughter of industrialist George Hearst is more of an alternate history than a Weird piece… until the origin of the Evil Queen’s magic mirror is revealed. While Valente’s West is a land of Native American magic, coyote spirits, and the mystery of wide open spaces, the East hold forests choked with ancient dark magic that reaches up from the earth in twisting black tentacles. Tentacles are never attached to anything wholesome in fiction.

Read Theresa’s complete article at here.

And in honor of all this recent Weird Western coverage, I’ve created a new — and long-overdue — category at Black Gate. Check out all our Weird Western coverage here.


  1. Now all we need is an award for weird westerns! Call it the Jonah Hex.

    Comment by Thomas Parker - September 27, 2015 12:57 pm

  2. Seconded!

    Comment by John ONeill - September 27, 2015 2:27 pm

  3. And then we can a rancorous split between the Social Justice Rustlers and the Angry Armadillos, and…oh…let’s just forget the whole thing.

    Comment by Thomas Parker - September 27, 2015 3:13 pm

  4. Ha!

    Comment by John ONeill - September 27, 2015 4:08 pm

  5. Now all we need is the sequel to Territory.

    Comment by Joe H. - September 27, 2015 9:17 pm

  6. Joe — Keep dreaming.

    Comment by John ONeill - September 28, 2015 1:05 am

  7. Always the optimist, me.

    Comment by Joe H. - September 28, 2015 8:30 am

  8. I have to say that the article that ran down the best of the weird western is high caliber stuff. There was one that I did not know about before. Now that I’m nearly over my Tor anger I might look into the Deadlands book. Deadlands was a great RPG and was a rich environment. Weird westerns seem to be in a new golden era. I’d love to see a Jonah Hex award.

    Comment by Wild Ape - September 28, 2015 5:24 pm

  9. Whenever I see Darrell Schweitzer’s table at a convention dealer’s room, he has a one-shot complete parody of Weird Tales (which I believe he was editing at the time), with every department and feature of the table of contents recast in the mode of the Weird Western.

    Comment by Sarah Avery - September 29, 2015 9:10 pm

  10. Sarah,

    You mean Weird Trails?

    I love that (one-shot) magazine. Thanks for reminding me…. I should definitely cover it in a Vintage Treasures post.

    Comment by John ONeill - October 1, 2015 2:22 pm

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