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Encyclopedia of Weird Westerns: Supernatural and Science Fiction Elements in Novels, Pulps, Comics, Films, Television and Games

4.1 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0786443901
ISBN-10: 0786443901
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"a useful and entertaining guide to the mind-bending and genre-blending world that resides outside the mainstream..." --Wild West History Journal

"All-encompassing coverage...a stunning amount of research...Green has done the Western genre a great service." --True West

"This unique volume covers ground that has generally eluded researchers." --Starlog

"In the extraordinarily useful and detailed Encyclopedia of Weird Westerns, Green identifies horrific and supernatural departures and twists over the last 150 years of the Western...Green's Encyclopedia covers considerable ground...it is certainly deserving of recognition." --Ray Merlock, University of South Carolina Upstate, The Journal of American Culture

About the Author

Paul Green is a biographer specializing in film and television history. He lives in Rustburg, Virginia.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 273 pages
  • Publisher: McFarland (October 14, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786443901
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786443901
  • Product Dimensions: 10 x 7 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,883,285 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Rodney Meek VINE VOICE on November 11, 2009
Format: Paperback
I'm guessing the audience for this will be made up mostly of film nerds, comic book fanboys, anime afficianados, and hardcore RPGers. Of course, those groups overlap significantly.

Many of the above will be familiar with at least a few of the movies and TV series present here (such as the much-lamented "Brisco County"), not to mention classic comic book gunslingers like Jonah Hex. Even these experts, though, might be amazed to find how much Weird Western material comes from the Deadlands role-playing game, Japanese animation, Marvel and DC Comics, and the literary works of Mike Resnick, Joe Lansdale, Leigh Brackett, C.L. Moore, and the now-obscure Lon Williams (by whom the author seems rather bemused). And of course, there are plenty of unhinged spaghetti Westerns from Italy and low-budget Mexican efforts to add to this field.

There are myriad entries (including some for stuff released this very year of 2009), but few are covered in depth. You get some basic background material about publication or premier dates, number of issues or episodes, writers/artists or cast and crew, and then a brief synopsis, with sometimes some interview snippets thrown in. Illustrations are sprinkled throughout fairly liberally. There are a few spelling and grammar errors, which is a bit annoying, and I was surprised by the omission of Clancy Brown from the credits for "The Burrowers" (an excellent movie, by the way). And this is exactly the kind of work that will spark a bit of debate about what made the cut and what didn't. I might argue for "Hell Comes to Frogtown", and more strongly for "Six-String Samurai", but those may be a little too post-apocalyptic.
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Format: Paperback
I had the opportunity to read an advanced copy of "Encyclopedia of Weird Westerns" and I have to say upfront, I'm not a huge fan of the western genre, BUT, with that said, throw in the "weird" element and you're in for one helluva read here!

This comprehensive work, all written in encyclopedia format, is the definitive guide to this very popular, but until now, very overlooked area of films, books, comics, TV shows, even computer games that fall into this category of "Weird Westerns."

I was impressed no end at the amount of research that had gone into producing this book. No stone is left unturned. In fact, some of the entries even prompted me to go out and rent a few of the films mentioned. Okay, so a few of the films are pretty kooky and no where near being Academy Award winners, but the genre allows for them to be bad, and some of them are SO bad, they're actually pretty entertaining. As I said earlier, I wouldn't necessarily seek out a western to watch, but with the "weird" twist, that's right up my alley. This book is a thorough examination of every medium there is. I can see avid western fans lapping this one up because it's a step to the side and that little bit different from your regular western-inspired book. I guarantee you, you've seen nothing like it.

If you're a western fan or a fan of the offbeat and humorous, buy this one. It'll be your new favorite book! Fantastic read!
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Format: Paperback
This book came up as a recommendation for me and being the fan of horror, scifi and westerns, I had to have it. Unfortunately it was out of print already. While Amazon was out of it except for the overpriced market vendors, I was fortunate enough to find a copy on Barnes and Noble's site. This book is fantastic! I love Westerns and the melding of other supernatural and scifi genres with it and this is the book to have if you are into that as well. It is a very thoroughly researched tome on virtually every aspect of weird westerns in most every type of media. Yes, in this digital age, a lot of the info can be obtained online, but that can be said of any encyclopedic reference guide. If you want to research it, go right ahead. I like having this guide at my fingertips. In going through the listings in the book, I found things I hadn't seen (the TV show Cliffhangers) or read in ages and it made me want to rush out there and seek it out. I also found things (mostly comics) that I hadn't heard of and now really want to find. Unfortunately a lot of the older stuff is rare and or out of print.

That being said, I also found some omissions I was surprised by, because some are very glaring. I'm sure there are others, but given the time and effort put into this volume, they are forgivable. Also, the ones missed hold a resonance with me because they are ones I am very familiar with. The first of which is the episode of the original Battlestar Galactica called The Lost Warrior about an abandoned cylon known as Red Eye who is a gunslinger in a small western type town. I know this is one single episode, but a lot of TV series are referenced throughout the book for a single western themed episode. This is a big one! One other is Vampire Hunter D.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first discovered the author Paul Green through his biography on one of my favorite tv actors, Pete Duel; I've also reviewed "Pete Duel - A Biography", and I noted in my write up that I had this or that question about Pete, still, yadayada. Well, if I have questions about the "Weird Western" world (novels, pulps, comics, movies, tv shows, so forth which incorporate supernatural or science fiction elements into the more accepted and recognized 'western') after reading this book, then either something is seriously wrong with me, I just can't be satisified, or perhaps both. This is, in fact, the encyclopedia it touts itself to be; I went into reading the book with literally no knowledge whatsoever on the subject, and within just a couple of pages, understood what I was reading and how the author was presenting the subject. The preface explains that the "Weird Western" genre can be separated into Weird Western, Weird Menace Western, Science Fiction Western, Space Western, Steampunk Western and Weird Western Romance, and simply with that helpful guide before me, it flashed through my head, "Ohhh...I'll bet 'Twilight Zone', 'The Wild, Wild West' and Yul Brynner and 'Westworld' are all gonna be in this book." They are, and EoWW continues this helpful thread throughout its' pages. 'Weird Westerns" discusses comic book characters such as Abraham Van Helsing, a vampire and demon hunter in the Old West; the 1993 television series 'The Adventures of Brisco County, Jr.Read more ›
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