Joshua Hale Fialkov

Purveyor of sheer awesomeness.

Joshua Hale Fialkov is the Harvey, Eisner, and Emmy Award nominated writer of graphic novels, animation, video games, film, and television, including:

THE LIFE AFTER, THE BUNKER, PUNKS, ELK'S RUN, TUMOR, ECHOES, KING, PACIFIC RIM, THE ULTIMATES, I, VAMPIRE, and JEFF STEINBERG CHAMPION OF EARTH. He's also written for NBC's CHICAGO MED and SYFY's upcoming INCORPORATED.

Photograph by Heidi Ryder

TheFourthRail.com says…

TheFourthRail.com - Snap Judgments:

WESTERN TALES OF TERROR #5 by various (Hoarse and Buggy Productions) Cover by Kieron Dwyer

Western Tales of Terror goes out with a bang, and while I'm sorry that the series ends with issue five, I can't say that I'm disappointed with the notion of going out on a high note. It's almost forty pages long, and it features contributions from Tom Mandrake, Steve Niles, Tony Moore, Scott Mills, Jason Rand, Juan Ferreyra and of course editor in chief Joshua Hale Fialkov. Mandrake's 'The Devil's Gate' is a great tale of post-Civil War witchcraft and insanity with the usual evocative artwork you expect from him. Rand and Ferreyra, creators of Small Gods, turn in 'The Tale of Chili Pete,' a fascinating story of a search for a magic chili recipe that is essentially a long setup for a weirdly off-kilter punchline, but while the ending left me a little cold, the rest of the story is the perfect weird old west tale. There was a similar disconnect for me in Niles and Mills' work on 'Gold Miners' Slaughter,' a zombie tale that was an odd fit for Mills' geometric shape-based style, but I liked the tale, even if I think that Mills would have been served better on another story and the story with another artist. 'Know When to Hold 'Em' by Matty Field, Tony Moore, Nate Bellegarde and Jacob Baakeis, like "Chili Pete," a long story setup for a punchline, but it's got gorgeous art and a nice tense poker sequence. "Six Shots" by Jason Rodriguez and Marco Magallanes and "The Wind" by Joseph Gauthier & R.H. Aidley are both quick and dirty horror pieces that get their point and get out, and while they may not have the punch of a longer story, they're a good example of how to tell good stories in short form. On the flipside of the coin, Fialkov finishes up another multi-part story with a miner facing down a dragon and it's as enjoyable as his previous tale of Indian zombies. Like all anthologies, Western Tales of Terror has featured some hit and miss storytelling, but there was at least one gem in every issue, and there were rarely any stories that out and out disappointed. Happy trails to you, Western Tales, and hopefully we'll see you again someday.