Sunday, March 5, 2023

Crossover of the Week

Spring 1868-1876 
A failed murder sets in motion an eight-year-long series of events that leads to a bounty hunter adopting the alias of Major D. M. Sabbath. Appearing or mentioned are: Jimmy Ballantrae (aka Valentin L’Ollonaise); Bougival Junction; Otto Stejar; Colonel Heinrich Von Skimmel; the Black Indian (aka Christian Adam Sabbath); Red Galloway; the Crazy Indian; Isaiah; Brockston-Morton Railways; Arthur Gordon; Leroy Bailey; the Hellbender Regiment; Randall; Sheriff Priam Ramsey; Hatfield; Paolo di Marco and his nephew Gino; Philip “Hot Lead” Holden; Marty Heywood; Lieutenant Tervis; Colonel Jonas Leland; Giddy Burnett; Samson McDade; Jake Sartana (aka the Ace of Hearts); “that crazy Englishman who made a bet this year about traveling around the world in 80 days”; the Gentlemen of the Night; Fergus O’Breane; Jason McIntock; O’Breane’s successor in London; Redstone; Rocambole; William LeFrank Gordon, aka Bill Gordon and Frank Gordon; Baron Gustav Von Schulenberg; Enrique Claudin; the Chupin Detective Agency; Grandville Fuller; Lost Knob, Texas; Christian Adam Sabbath, Jr.; Arthur Gordon’s wife Xaviera; Skurlock; Mitchell Stangerson; Ignacz Djanko; the J. V. Harden Tobacco Company; Bryant’s Gap; Delilah L’Ollonaise; Madame Delphine; Hot Lead’s son; John Gordon; Snow Hill County; Judge Cutthroat; Bennet’s Raiders; Specs; Horst Drebber; the Council of Four; John Ferrier; Count Stanislaus Kowalski; Anton Niklas Petersen; San Miguel; the Drifter with Many Names; Chadwell; the Black Coats; Regina; Louie Gordon; Sgt. Boomerang Smith; Captain Younger; and Delta Valley, California. 
Story by Rick Lai in Rick Lai’s Major Sabbath, Ron Fortier, ed., Airship 27 Productions, 2016. Major D. M. Sabbath is a conflation of Colonel Douglas Mortimer from the movie For a Few Dollars More with the title character of the movies Sabata and Return of Sabata, both played by Lee Van Cleef. Jimmy Ballantrae is meant to be Ballantine from the movie Adiós, Sabata. Stejar and Colonel Skimmel are also from that film. The Black Indian is meant to be the title character of Adiós, Sabata, also known as Indio Black, and played by Yul Brynner. Bougival Junction is from the movie Frenchie King. Red Galloway is a combination of Lee Galloway, the actual protagonist of the inaccurately titled film Sartana in the Valley of Death, with Banjo from Sabata; William Berger played both roles. The Crazy Indian and Isaiah are El Indio and Prophet from For a Few Dollars More. Brockston-Morton Railways is a conflation of the Brockston railroad company from the movie The Big Gundown with the Morton railroad company from the film Once Upon a Time in the West. William LeFrank Gordon is a combination of William L. “Bill” Gordon from Robert E. Howard’s “The Dead Remember” with Frank from Once Upon a Time in the West. Baron Von Schulenberg is from The Big Gundown. Here, he is Colonel Skimmel’s cousin; both characters were played by Gérard Herter. Arthur Gordon is from Emile Gaboriau’s La Vie Infernale. The Chupin Detective Agency is also from Gaboriau’s works. Bailey is from the movie Hannie Caulder. Specs is another character from that film, Thomas Luther Price. The Hellbender Regiment and Colonel Jonas are from the movie The Hellbenders. Jonas’ surname of Leland implies a genealogical relationship to Jed Leland from Citizen Kane; Joseph Cotten played both characters. Randall is bounty hunter Josh Randall from the TV series Wanted: Dead or Alive. Sheriff Priam Ramsey is the father of the title character of the TV show Hec Ramsey. Samson McDade is Sam McDade from the Hec Ramsey episode “Scar Tissue.” Hatfield is from the movie Stagecoach. Paolo and Gino di Marco are from the Have Gun – Will Travel episode “The High Graders.” Delta Valley, California is where Paladin adopted his alias in the Have Gun – Will Travel episode “Genesis.” Philip “Hot Lead” Holden is meant to be “Hot Dead” Holden from the movie I Am Sartana, Your Angel of Death. Sartana is a spaghetti western hero played by Gianni Garko, who also portrayed a virtually identical character called the Ace of Hearts in A Bullet for a Stranger. Grandville Fuller is from Light the Fuse...Sartana Is Coming. Marty Heywood is from the movie Wanted. Lieutenant Tervis is meant to be Clyde from Return of Sabata. Jason McIntock is related to Joe McIntock from the same film. In Return of Sabata, it is revealed Sabata left a woman at the altar in Redstone who later gave birth to his son; Delilah L’Ollonaise is meant to be that woman. Giddy Burnett (later Sheriff Gideon Burnett), Hot Lead’s son (Loco, played, like Hot Dead himself, by Klaus Kinski), John Gordon, Snow Hill County, Judge Cutthroat (Henry Pollicut), Regina, and Louie Gordon (Silence) are from the movie The Great Silence. “That crazy Englishman” is Phileas Fogg from Jules Verne’s Around the World in Eighty Days. The Gentlemen of the Night are from Paul Féval’s novel of the same name, as is Fergus O’Breane. The Black Coats are featured in a series of novels by Féval. O’Breane’s successor in London is Professor Moriarty, Sherlock Holmes’ archenemy. Stangerson, Drebber, the Council of Four, and John Ferrier are from Doyle and Watson’s first Holmes novel, A Study in Scarlet. The J. V. Harden Tobacco Company is based on a reference to a tobacco millionaire named John Vincent Harden in the Holmes tale “The Adventure of the Solitary Cyclist.” Rocambole is the protagonist of a series of novels by Ponson du Terrail. Enrique Claudin is really Erik, the title character of Gaston Leroux’s The Phantom of the Opera, using an alias. Erique Claudin was the Phantom’s real name in the 1943 film adaptation of the novel. Lost Knob, Texas is from Robert E. Howard’s “Graveyard Rats,” “Old Garfield’s Heart,” and “Wild Water.” Christian Adam Sabbath, Jr. is meant to be Chris Adams from the Magnificent Seven film series; he was played variously by Yul Brynner (The Magnificent Seven and Return of the Magnificent Seven), George Kennedy (Guns of the Magnificent Seven), and Lee Van Cleef (The Magnificent Seven Ride!) The implication of Arthur Gordon’s marriage to Xaviera LeFrank, the stage name of actress Francine Xavier, is that he is the grandfather of Robert E. Howard’s adventurer Francis X. Gordon, aka El Borak. Skurlock, Texas is from Howard’s “Black Wind Blowing.” Ignacz Djanko is the title character of the movies Django and Django Strikes Again. Bryant’s Gap is where a group of Texas Rangers, including Dan Reid, were massacred by Butch Cavendish’s gang; the sole survivor, Dan’s brother John Reid, adopted the guise of the Lone Ranger. Madame Delphine is Delphine Yant from Louis L’Amour’s The Proving Trail. In that novel, it is said that the Yant family also uses the aliases of Cabanus and L’Ollonaise. Bennet’s Raiders are from the movie Face to Face. Count Stanislaus Kowalski is really A. J. Raffles’ foe Count Corbucci from E. W. Hornung’s “The Fate of Faustina” and “The Last Laugh,” while Anton Niklas Petersen is in fact Guy Boothby’s villain Dr. Antonio Nikola. The names Kowalski and Petersen evoke Yodlaf Peterson and Sergei Kowalski, Franco Nero’s characters in the movies Compañeros and The Mercenary, respectively. San Miguel is a Mexican border town seen in four Eurowesterns: El Rojo, A Fistful of Dollars; Run, Man, Run, the sequel to The Big Gundown; and A Bullet for the General. The Drifter with Many Names is the Man with No Name from Sergio Leone’s “Dollars Trilogy.” His aliases are based on the names used for the character in each film: Joe Limbo (Joe in A Fistful of Dollars); Lefty (Manco in For a Few Dollars More); and Rubio (Blondie in The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly). Major (formerly Captain) Chadwell, Sgt. Boomerang Smith (Sgt. Jeremiah Smith), and Captain (formerly Lt.) Cole Younger are from the movie Charge! (aka Those Dirty Dogs). 

This crossover is only one of hundreds covered in my book Crossovers Expanded: A Secret Chronology of the World Volume 3, which will be published by the fine folks at Meteor House! All three volumes are AUTHORIZED companions to Win Scott Eckert's books Crossovers: A Secret Chronology of the World Volumes 1 and 2!

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