Quentin Turnbull

quentinturnbullfilmLet’s jump to Legends of Tomorrow now, as we met another villain to speak about: in Outlaw Country, the Legends come back to the Old West, in 1874, where a new time aberration created quite an unpleasant countereffect. A Time Pirate trying to obtain some Dwarf Star metal, in fact, ended up providing the villainous Quentin Turnbull with futuristic weaponry, allowing him to conquer half of the United States of America. Turnbull, portrayed by Jeff Fahey, is one of the most notorious villains in DC Universe’s western comics, and this one is his second live action appearance. The first one was in the movie Jonah Hex, where he was portrayed by none other than John Malkovich: in the film he’s a general from the Confederate States Army arrested by his subordinate, Jonah Hex, for killing civilians indiscriminately; in revenge, Turnbull kills Hex’s wife and son and brands his face with his initials. He resurfaces years later as a terrorist, trying to kill President Ulysses Grant with a “super-weapon” crafted by Eli Whitney. The comics version is something different from both: let’s see together.

Quentin Turnbull was born in RichmondVirginia, at the beginning of the XIX Century. Nothing is known of his youth, but as an adult, Turnbull had grown to be one of the richest men in the country, a wealthy plantation owner with an impressive number of slaves and hundreds of hectars of fertile ground. He married an unnamed woman, and from her he had a son, Jeb, his heir. His wife died on childbirth, but Quentin took comfort in Jeb, as he molded him into being his perfect image. When Jeb was a young man, the Civil War put the United States of America one against the other, North versus South, and the Turnbulls were obviously on the Confederates’ side. Jeb was enlisted in the Confederate States Army, and Quentin watched him leave full of pride. While his heroic son was
quentinturnbullcomics1battling the Union Army, Turnbull kept managing his plantation, but things weren’t as easy as before, as voices of the incoming liberators had made the slaves cocky: even Quentin’s ones eventually rebelled, starting a riot that put even a powerful man with a remarkable private army such as Turnbull in difficulty. Luckily enough, in those days Jeb came back home on leave, and with him there was his best friend, a young man named Jonah Hex. Jeb and Hex helped Quentin with the uprising, and the slaves were defeated and reminded their rightful place once again. Jeb Turnbull left again with his father’s blessing, and Quentin was happy there was someone like Jonah Hex at his son’s side…but that feeling would have soon be changed. Near the end of the war, Jeb was killed along all his comrades in arms by the Union soldiers in Fort Charlotte, and only one man survived the massacre: Jonah Hex who, accordingly to the Union itself, had betrayed the Confederates and sold their position to the enemy, allowing the following carnage. Distraught and deprived of the one person he cared for, Quentin Turnbull swore he would have had his revenge on Hex, even if it was the last thing he did in his life.

Quentin Turnbull waited years to track down Jonah Hex, who had gone missing after being dishonored and branded a traitor; finally, the man resurfaced as a bounty hunter, still wearing his robes from the war, something that Turnbull considered even more offensive. Eager to make Hex pay for what he had done, Turnbull hired five gunmen who used to be soldiers in the Confederate Army, and sent them to kill the bounty hunter. Turnbull’s plan failed miserably, as Jonah managed to kill all five his assailants. Following this, Quentin tried another plan: believing law could do more than mercenaries, Turnbull bought the Sheriff of Point Pyrrhus to finish what the five killers couldn’t…but things became messy as somebody tried to assassinate President Ulysses Grant at the same time. A major gunfight ensued, and the Sheriff was killed in action…but Turnbull visited Point Pyrrhus, and found out that Hex had been killed as well. Satisfied, he left…just to learn some time after that the people from the town had rescued all the wounded in the massacre, including Jonah Hex, who survived yet another time. Frustrated and desperate as he wasn’t growing any quentinturnbullcomics2younger, Turnbull made another attempt, and put a remarkable bounty on Hex’s head, hoping that some other bounty hunter or outlaw could kill him. His hopes were in vain, as Hex proved to be an unbeatable gunman…but he obtained something unexpected: tired of having people on his trails, Jonah Hex came back to his plantation in Richmond, asking to see Quentin Turnbull to finally clear his name and make peace with the old man. Turnbull couldn’t ask for anything better, and not only he refused to forgive him, he had him captured. Killing him would have been easy, but that was not enough for him, as Jonah Hex kept denying his responsibility in Jeb’s death. Seeking an opportunity, Quentin Turnbull summoned the few survivors of Fort Charlotte, and had them stand as jury in a trial against Hex: the world would have finally seen the bounty hunter for the scum he was, just before a jury of peers condemnded him to the death he had deserved for so long.

Quentin Turnbull is a cunning and mean old man, who relinquishes himself to his thirst of vengeance and lives to avenge his beloved son Jeb…blaming the wrong man and making his life a living hell. Resourceful and subtly smart, he’s able to use his influence to move an entire country to do his will. In his youth he was a fine gunslinger, and he still keeps some of his old skill, but he prefers to pay others to do the dirty work, paying people and moving them as pawns on a chessboard. One of the most powerful men in the United States, Turnbull is also one of the most dangerous, an obsessed father who won’t know peace until his son is avenged.

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  1. […] Quentin Turnbull […]


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