Tex Willer

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The cast from the left--Kit Willer, Tex Willer, Kit Carson, and Tiger Jack.

Tex Willer, or Tex, is a very popular Italian western comic. Created by Gian Luigi Bonelli and Aurelio Galleppini in 1948, it became a success thanks to its beautiful artwork, fine cast of likable characters and engrossing stories, and it is still ongoing.

The comic depicts the adventures of a heroic Texas Ranger named Tex Willer who rights wrongs in the Old West with his snarky friend Kit Carson, his resourceful son Kit Willer and his trusty Navajo ally Tiger Jack.

The comic portrays Native Americans sympathetically and has deep, thought-provoking storylines with a good balance of humour and drama. The story began with Tex's early adventures, and he gradually aged in subsequent years while gaining friends, fathering a son and attracting the attention of many notorious and dangerous villains (and villainesses) along the way.

Tex is also well-known outside Italy, particularly in the Nordic countries where it almost rivals Donald Duck fandom.

Now that you're here, have a look at the Character Sheet too.


Tropes used in Tex Willer include:
  • Anti-Villain: Ricardo in the Rangers of Patagonia story.
  • Badass
    • Badass Crew: Expecially in the 100th volume, where basically all of Tex's pals are gathered to stop a gang of criminals.
  • Badass Bookworm: El Morisco, a fat, friendly Egyptian scholar who can practice magic and often helps Tex during his "supernatural stories".
  • Bank Robbery: Baddies do lots of these.
  • Berserk Button: If you dare mock Native Americans or call Tex a liar, be prepared to either eat your words or get a mouth full of fist.
    • Carson also tends to get quite pissed if you're making smart comments about his age and are not his friend.
  • Bigfoot, Sasquatch, and Yeti: One mini-arc was focused on the Sasquatch, represented as a benevolent ape-man with healing powers.
  • Body Horror: El Muerto, whose face was burnt in a fire. Also the Master of the Abyss, who looks like a dried walking skeleton.
    • Also, the infected people in Light From Space.
  • Boisterous Bruiser: Gros Jean the half-blood and Pat Mc Ryan the Irishman.
  • Bounty Hunter: Tex has faced a few of these, most notably El Muerto.
  • Cattle Drive: Many instances of this.
  • Celibate Hero: After the death of his wife Lylith, Tex hasn't had a relationship with any other woman. Carson, on the other hand...
  • Corrupt Hick: Many of Tex's enemies are these.
  • Darker and Edgier: Stories written by Mauro Boselli and Sergio Bonelli (under alias of Nolitta) are considerably more violent than those by Gianluigi Bonelli and Claudio Nizzi. They're also more prone to have a bittersweet note at the end, and sometimes villains aren't just Card-Carrying Villains, or then they are way worse. Stories by Antonio Segura are even MORE darker and violent than Boselli/Nolitta stories.
  • Dead Little Sister: Tex has lost many people dear to him over the years, including his father, brother, mentor and wife.
    • In Return To Culver City, we get to see the graves of his parents in the long-abandoned childhood home of Tex.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Carson is definitely guilty of this although Tex isn't that far behind either.
  • Deal with the Devil: What Mefisto eventually ends up doing, thus becoming one of Tex's deadliest enemies.
  • Didn't See That Coming: Many baddies didn't see Tex coming, and lost for that. Some particularly dangerous ones did see him but failed seeing him bringing a few hundreds Navajos or the US Army as reinforcement.
    • In his third appearance, Mefisto was defeated because of this: he did saw everything Tex could bring against him, but didn't expect Padma (an exiled Buddhist monk that had saved his life, and a medium so powerful to be implied he can kill with his magic, something Mefisto himself can't) to survive receiving a brazier to the head, telling Tex where he could find him and driving Mefisto to a state of harmless madness.
  • Escalating Brawl: Several examples, including an epic brawl that ends when Gros Jean kicks all the bad guys out of the inn and then chops the supporting pillars with an axe, wrecking the whole place.
  • Evil Sorcerer: Mefisto and his son Yama. It also happens in stories concerning voodoo and similar stuff.
  • Family-Unfriendly Death: Mefisto is blocked into a dungeon and mauled by a bunch of huge rats, who eat him alive.
    • Brennan, the last survivor of Lylith's murderers, was subjected to a nightmarish psychological torture before being eaten by sharks. Differently from Mephisto's death, this was on purpose.
  • Fastest Gun in the West: Tex is pretty much the fastest gunslinger out there... although there have been a few who have bested him.
    • Ruby Scott managed to draw faster than Tex in a duel, but he had a custom holster that can be spinned into shooting position, allowing Scott to shoot without even drawing his gun.
  • Five-Man Band
  • Going Native: Partly. Tex spends a lot of his free time with his Navajo tribe although he is often drawn back to civilization to help someone in need.
  • Grandma, What Massive Hotness You Have!: Kit Carson is in a very good shape for his age. And looking at his track record with women, he's quite aware of his looks too.
  • Guile Hero: Although Tex isn't afraid to use his fists or guns to solve problems, he uses his wits and complex plans just as often to outsmart more dangerous opponents.
  • The Gunslinger: Tex's group is very adept at using guns.
  • Halfbreed: Kit Willer is half Navajo. It often gets him in trouble in such towns which don't tolerate anyone with "Injun blood."
  • Imperial Stormtrooper Marksmanship Academy: Many of the Red Shirt Mooks that the heroes face, even if the odds favor them.
  • Indian Maiden: Tesah and Lilyth.
  • Kick the Dog: Many of Tex's enemies does it, but the top dog-kickers are Teller & Brennan, two arms dealer that, in revenge for Tex ruining a prosperous arms trade for them, tried to kill him by unleashing a smallpox epidemics on the Navajos (by chance, Tex was away with Kit when it happened), killing his wife in the process.
    • Tex did it in one occasion: when he finally found Brennan (who had barely survived Tex's initial Roaring Rampage of Revenge and managed to lose him), his end was the second most horrible in the entire series, topped only by Mephisto's.
  • Knight Errant: Tex and his friends travel around the US a lot (and sometimes even go abroad) setting things right.
  • Master of Disguise: Proteus.
  • Megaton Punch: Not exactly that strong, but Tex hits hard.
  • Mighty Whitey: Tex becomes the chief of the Navajo tribe and gains the name Eagle of the Night. This title gives him some privileges among other tribes who recognize his authority, and he uses his position to help the tribes which other whites try to use for their own gain. Tex is very respectful of different tribes' customs, however, and often sees Native Americans as better people than whites.
  • Missing Mom: Lilyth to Kit Willer.
  • Mountain Man: Gros-Jean is a poster boy for this trope.
  • Names to Run Away From Really Fast: What Tex's name is like to villains as his fame spreads.
    • Also Mefisto and his son Yama.
  • No Kill Like Overkill: In first half of Two Faces of Vengeance, Tex kills Don Luis Toledo by emptying entire Gatling magazine into him.
  • Our Liches Are Different: Rakos/Sokar, the evil Egyptian warlock who was cursed by Isis and is forced to live in a pyramid, protected by his Ushabti
  • Outlaw: Many of Tex's enemies are these.
  • Papa Wolf: Try threatening or harming any members of Tex's family, and you'll come to regret it.
  • Raised by Natives: Partly. Although Tex was occasionally around to look after Kit when Lilyth died, he was often called on duty and thus left Kit to be raised by the Navajo tribe.
  • Roaring Rampage of Revenge: In one story Tex begins to hunt down a group of bandits when he thinks that they have killed his son.
    • He also did an epic one against the crooks who caused the death of Lilyth.
  • Running Gag: Every time we see a telegraph office, the employee gets scared, killed or the butt of some joke. Some examples: in The Blood Pact the first telegraph employee to appear is lured into sending a very offending (and fully justified) message to the Ranger headquarter with the excuse 'It's a secret code', while the second one is killed by the mooks while he gives ammo to Tex and Carson besieged in his office; in the story Navajo Blood the employees thinks they're going to be killed by the rebelling Navajos, who are there to escort a journalist who needs to send an enormous report to the Washington Post (the Navajos also escorted the money to pay for the message: it was big enough that the editor of the Post called it a novel upon getting it, and the employees doubted he could pay before seeing the cash); in Son of the Wind the employee decides to get some fun at Tiger Jack, Tex's Navajo companion, who promptly threathens him with a knife, has him send the message and pays for the service with a smile before telling him his female coworker could resume breathing.
    • Also, Carson's hat being used as decoy for enemy fire (and him complaining about how he always has to buy a new one after that).
  • Screw the Rules, I'm Doing What's Right: Tex doesn't care about rules as long as he can bring criminals to justice. His brash attitude often brings him into conflict with various stiff officers, sheriffs etc.
  • The Seventh Cavalry: Both good and evil versions of this.
  • The Sheriff: Plenty of them, ranging from corrupted to law-abiding ones.
  • Squishy Wizard: Mefisto and Yama have immense mystical powers and two weaknesses: they can't conjure anything solid (thus depending on more mundane means to actually kill Tex and his pards) and are killable as any human. Also, being both quite lean (and Mefisto being an old man), they are relatively weak in hand to hand, something they tend to avoid.
  • Train Job: Baddies do this.
    • Inverted in The Armored Train where Tex gathered a team in a mission on Mexico to rob the titular train transporting gold and guns to a rebel general.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: Yama's whereabouts after his third defeat are still unknown. He may have died, though...
    • Last time I checked, Yama went into depression and was back doing the stage magician with his mother.