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Adventures of Jack Burton

Episode Studies by Clayton Barr

enik1138-at-popapostle-dot-com
Adventures of Jack Burton: Bad Weather Comin' Adventures of Jack Burton
"Bad Weather Comin'"
Big Trouble in Little China #23 (BOOM! Studios)
Written by Fred Van Lente
Illustrated by Victor Santos
Colors by Gonzalo Duarte
Letters by Ed Dukeshire
Cover by Jeffrey "Chamba" Cruz
April 2016

 

The day of the great San Francisco earthquake arrives.

 

Story Summary

 

Jack's doppelganger finds himself shanghaied aboard a ship a league out to sea. Meanwhile, Winona leaves the real Jack with Egg Shen in the underground city while she returns to the Wing Kong Trading Company building to help him take down Whist. She finds that Zhou has now taken on the full Lo Pan guise as sorcerer and, with the help of Lightning, has recharged her iPhone, using it to learn of the great San Francisco earthquake due to strike early that morning. He plans to use the chaos of the destructive quake and accompanying fires to bring down Whist and Winona agrees to help him.

 

Back in the underground city, Egg tells Jack about his great love, Chin, who accompanied him and Zhou from China back at the start of the California gold rush. Egg says he used his magic to find troves of gold in the hills of San Francisco which he and Zhou mined, while Chin cooked and performed other chores for them. But the filthy conditions of the streams where the horde of prospectors worked made Chin sick with typhoid and it claimed her life. Moved, Jack reveals he also once had a true love who died...a slow, lingering death. When the first foreshock of the coming earthquake strikes, Egg snaps out of his opium haze and urges the other underground residents to flee above ground and even uses a spell to support the earth ceiling while the residents flee.

 

CONTINTUED IN BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA #24

 

Notes from the Jack Burton chronology

 

Though the events of this issue take place in 1906, the chronology of the characters follows the 2015 events of "All-In".

 

Characters appearing or mentioned in this issue

 

Enrico Caruso (historical figure)

President Theodore Roosevelt (historical figure, seen in photograph)

Zhou (David Lo Pan)

The Three Storms (Thunder, Rain, and Lightning)

Jack's doppelganger

Jack Burton

Winona Chi

Egg Shen

Damien Whist

Chin (in flashback only)

 

Didja Know?

 

Most of the issues of this series did not have individual titles. I borrowed the next issue blurb from the end of the previous issue as the title of this issue, "Bad Weather Comin'".

 

Didja Notice?

 

The description of famed opera singer Enrico Caruso's visit to and performance in San Francisco on April 17, 1906 and his actions the next day during the great quake is accurate.

 

The wanted poster on page 6 refers to Jack as "Jack Sleeveless".

 

The Storm called Lightning charges Winona's iPhone and Lo Pan is able to use it to gain information on future historical events, mainly the great earthquake due to hit San Francisco early that morning (April 18, 1906). But smartphones do not store that kind of data unless the user had previously saved it there in some way. The phone has to have a wireless connection to the worldwide web...which does not exist in the current time of 1906, so Lo Pan should have learned virtually nothing about future history! The No-Prize explanation is that we could argue he used a magic spell to allow the phone to connect to the future...but if he could do that, what does he need the phone for? He just needs to obtain a crystal ball!

 

Egg tells Jack that back during the gold rush, he used the feng shui of the hills to find hidden troves of gold. Feng shui is a type of Chinese Earth magic that can allegedly be utilized to improve one's fortune and to harmonize people with their environment, using principles of astronomy and geomagnetism.

 

Egg relates that his true love, Chin, died of typhoid from a contaminated stream. Typhoid is a bacterial infection caused by ingestion of water or food contaminated by feces of already infected individuals.

 

Page 19 states that Whist has lied to his wife, telling her he was travelling to Vancouver on business (he was really spending the night in a hotel with his mistress). This probably refers to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

 

The bank Whist owns is called Whist National Bank.

 

On page 20, the hand symbol Egg makes while casting his spell is one often seen used by the Marvel Comics sorcerer character, Dr. Strange.


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