So, having finished with the big names among the allies of Tex, here we have a few of the occasional friends.
Hutch, Rod and "Damned" Dick
A long time before Tex even imagend of becoming a ranger or a chieftain of the Navajos he was just a young cow-boy working at his father's ranch. At that time his best friends were a trio of hotheaded cow-boys: Rod Vergil, “Damned” Dick Dayton, Clarence "Hutch" Hutchenrider. Many years later the ranger described them as "for all their flaws, they had the heart in the right place and I couldn't ask for anything else".
The stories about these three are still a work in progess. While Rod and Dick were created by Bonelli senior for Between Two Flags
, the storyline outining Tex's exploits during the American Civil War, Hutch was added by Mauro Boselli for the Nueces Valley
special (cover above)... which sadly I don't have (especially because that story finally lift the veil around the identity of Tex's mother).
From what I was able to see from other stories Hutch was more or less the asshole of the group, pairing a caustic sense of humor with a certain racist streak that often put him at odds with Tex and Dick. Nonetheless he had enough common sense to shut the hell up when the situation required. Hutch was also the most fidgety, he rarely stopped in any place for more than a few months and roamed the frontier for many years on his own.
Rod was very similar to Hutch in many ways (the two often teamed-up against Tex and Dick), but a lot less vocal. Shortly before the beginning of the Civil War he, Tex and Dick tried and failed to create a horse ranch in Texas. As they were moving north to sell their remaining animals, Rod decided to enlist with the Confederate Army (he was pretty on Texan pride), while his friends continued north and ended up enlisting as scouts with the Union. This lead Rod to an untimely death on the Battle of Shiloh (or Pittsburg Landing) in Tennesse. Tex and Dick found him dying in the field and were just able to rekindle their friendship and curse the war one last time.
Dick was the most visually unique: a giant in the same size category of Pat MacRyan -- although not even close in terms of strength -- with thin moustace and a bald head. Dick was the most stalwarth companion of the young Tex, sharing many of his anti-racist ideas (it was implied that Dick had lived with natives for a while). He was often praised as an excellet shot with a rifle, but a terrible medic (he described himself as "barely a butcher").
Rod and Hutch are probably your run-of-the-mill PL5 gunslingers, Dick is PL6 mostly by virtue of his strength and aim. Keep in mind that young Tex was probably PL6 himself.
The Frisco Gang
Juan "Lefty" Potrero, "Bingo", Angelo & Captain Tom Devlin
Out of all the great American Cities, San Francisco is the one that Tex visited the most and it had been the theater of two drammatic confrontation with the Black Tiger and the Master. Of course this lead to the pards making a number of friends in Frisco.
Lefty is a gigantic half-spanish former pugilist now of the "Hercules Gym", where he works alongside his assistant and former sparring partner Bingo.
In terms of stats, Lefty and Bingo are pretty much a pallete swaps of Pat MacRyan and during their first appearence (the Barbary Coast
storyline) they filled exactly the same role, alongside a number of other unnamed pugilists recruited to trash the joints of the crimp gang lead by one John "Shangai" Kelly
. This was quite ironic because in the first Master storyline, Pat and Lefty faced each other in the ring.
Lefty and Bingo are often played for laughs outside of combat ever since Claudio Nizzi introduced their respective wives. Whereas Lefty's is married to a rather normal looking girl, Bingo's wife is a 6' and something amazon perfectly capable beating any man into submission without breaking a sweat. Both ladies are prominent members of the Salvation Army and had imposed a strict no-alcohol regimen to all the patrons of the "Hercules".
Angelo is kind of the "odd-man", despite training at "Hercules", he's short, rail thin and apparently inoffensive. Despite his nerdy appearence he's an expert fencer and use his walking cane in a way vaguely reminiscent of Bartitsu. He's also the king of all the poker players in a 100 miles radius.
Thomas "Tom" Delvin is the chief of police of San Francisco and an old friend of Tex and Carson. He often acts just as the quest-giver, calling the rangers to help him in case of emergecies. In a few situation Devlin showcased to be an excellent fighter (for example saving Tex from the Black Tiger) and he has quite a number of friends in high places (including one John Sutter
General Philip Davis
One of the few, if not the only, top military brass that Tex respect. Apparently they saved each other's life several times when Davis was only a lowly captain. General Philip Davis is often mentioned but appeared only in the final part of the Messenger of Death
storyline. Despite this meager curriculum the character was portrayed as Tex's wild card to get the right information to the right person in Washington D.C. This has lead many readers to disregard him as a simple deus ex-machina, until Claudio Nizzi finally gave him a face and a personality.
Davis is a career military man, who climbed the ranks from private to general without any inside help. His impressive resume provides him with a pretty big leverage with the Ministry of War and the Ministry of Indian Affairs. Over the years he has been resposible for stopping and demoting a number of ambitious officier that aimed to make a career by killing natives and actually tried to pioneer a more respectful treatment oif the various nations.
Despite being in his late 50s, Davies is still a pretty solid PL5 cavalry soldier and shrwed politician.
Barely 5' tall and always wearing his signature tweed jacket and bowler hat, MacParland looks like pretty much like the stereotypical travelling salesman, instead he's one of the most shrwed detectives of the U.S.A. and the right hand man of Allan Pinkerton
Despite being created by Bonelli senior, MacParland was often used only as a quest-giver, proving a good excuse to pit Tex and the pards to go after some real world criminal, like the Dalton Gang
or the Wild Bunch
. It took Claudio Nizzi, a notorious fan of mystery and police procedural novels, to fully flesh out the narrative possibilities of the character.
MacParland is, by his own admission, not much of a fighter (probably PL4), but a hell of a detective.
The character was actually inspired by a real Pinkerton agent James McParland