Review: West – Autumn Dusk
West – Autumn Dusk
By Andrew Cheverton and Tim Keable
Autumn Dusk is the final comic in West Volume II. It is, as everything Cheverton and Keable have created with Jerusalem West, a quite stunning thing.
But final parts of a volume are troublesome things to talk about. Because I’ve talked plenty of Jerusalem West and his weird adventures before, and given that there’s essential, shocking stuff in here that I really can’t tell you about this could probably best be summed up thus:
2. They sound great yes? Well this is every bit as great, and there’s an ending that will simply leave you agog.
Thus far the furthest we’ve ventured into the life of Jerusalem West is 1896, the autumn of West’s years, where he was looking forward to settling down, no more fighting, no more weirdness.
It never works out that way.
Last time, in Points West, it was West’s past come to haunt him, killers riding into town. This time we’re even further into the autumn of his years, it’s 1901, and both West and zombie killing pal from the Confederate Dead Wil Frohickie look to be settling peacefully into old age. But the lure of an easy case draws them into the big city…
Yeah, how much trouble can it be?
You just know how this is going to turn out don’t you?
Well, actually, I reckon you don’t. I certainly didn’t. Sure, it’s obvious the turn of the page is going to plunge West and Wil into weird west trouble, and since we’ve done werewolves and zombies, this wasn’t the surprise either…
Oh, yes. Undead bloodsuckers, just the latest in a long line of weird stuff West has had to deal with.
But you still have no idea how it’s all going to turn out. Because Cheverton’s done it again, managed to completely surprise, using the non-linear retelling of the West saga to deliver a great, and completely unexpected finale to Volume II. This is brilliantly told work, complex, inventive, playing with multiple genres to create a true saga. The non-linearity provides the unusual structure, throwing you off kilter slightly and making you piece it all together. There’s much to enjoy here, and even more to be gleaned from multiple readings.
Keable’s art is so strong, obviously drawing something he enjoys, his characters look the part, authentically old, character delivered in body language and subtle lines, clarity of storytelling to the fore, yet still full of great, great images.