www.onceuponatimeinsf.com GRAPHIC NOVEL




A vengeful brother searches for his shanghaied sister in the vicious 1906 San Francisco Barbary Coast back alleys.

Creator, writer and producer Michael X welcomes you to “Once Upon A Time in San Francisco – The Black Hatchet,” a film and graphic novel for audiences that love high octane epic-action-adventure-historical-disaster-martial arts-thrillers.

Think “John Wick” with a “Fist of Fury” melded with “The Punisher” running amok with two razor sharp hatchets in “Gangs of New York” except it is the dark and debaucherous Barbary Coast.

This graphic novel and film is written to bridge the great Sergio Leone’s “Once Upon A Time in The West” and “Once Upon A Time in America,” perfectly wedged between the two periods embracing Leone’s themes, settings, stories and styles including reviving the Claudia Cardinale character from ‘”Once Upon A Time In the West” who takes her riches to San Francisco and opens a saloon called “Sweetwater.”​

​“Once Upon A Time in San Francisco – The Black Hatchet” is a heart-pounding, eye-popping, R-rated narrative with high-stakes, compelling plotlines, life or death action plus twists, turns, misdirection’s and cliff hangers that will keep audiences turning pages and on the edge of their seats from the first scene to the nail-biting end fueled by the fearless Black Hatchet spinning dual cleavers of revenge.


Malcolm Hutchins, a 19 year-old cowboy fails to stop Tong Hatchet Men from kidnapping his 14 year-old sister, Rose, as they stroll to a cattle auction through the San Francisco Barbary Coast. He barely survives the ambush and is left with a gruesome nine-inch hatchet gash on his face – a permanent reminder of his catastrophic blunder and festering guilt.

While recuperating on his family’s cattle ranch near Mt. Shasta and planning his rescue expedition with his blood brother White Crow, leader of the Okwanuchu and masters of black obsidian hatchet weaponry, his home is incinerated and parents burned alive by highwaymen.

Filled with guilt, shame and rage, Malcolm, who learned White Crane Kung Fu from the Werewolf Shaolin Monk Grand Master drifter, rushes back to San Francisco and ferociously hunts for Rose using his dual black blades of justice to mercilessly slaughter Hatchet Men raining the alleys with their blood and body parts.

Just he gets close to finding the Pale Devil, the nasty Shanghai Green Dragon Tong albino enforcer who runs the Barbary Coast gangs – and the villain who engraved the Black Hatchet’s face while kidnapping Rose – an 8.3 earthquake pulverizes the metropolis followed by a four day inferno that scorches it to near annihilation.

Enlisted to fight the fires, the Black Hatchet’s suicidal acts of heroism save trapped victims, however he is swallowed by a collapsing and burning building.

Miraculously he survives, plunging into the underground network of pirate tunnels. Bruised and battered, as the Black Hatchet searches for an escape, fate guides him to the Pale Devil, trapped in a hideout with three captured girls he is trafficking to Shanghai with the Werewolf Monk, a wanted outlaw with a bounty on his head.

To his elation, Rose is one of the girls. As they face off, the Pale Devil reveals he hired Black Bart to incinerate his house and eliminate the Black Hatchet and his family. An epic, bloody, Kung Fu battle ensues as he and the Werewolf Monk brawl the Pale Devil and his Hatchet Men.

Just when it seems the Pale Devil has the Black Hatchet dead-to-rights, Rose intervenes and saves her brother.

Rose and the Black Hatchet barely escape the subterranean lair as it fills with water that sucks the Werewolf Monk into the savage current. Above ground in a hurricane of flames, the Black Hatchet sets his sights on reuniting with his girlfriend, but finds what appears to be her corpse in the rubble.

On horseback, he and Rose race through the maze of scorched ruins to safety where the Black Hatchet performs a dangerous, breathtaking, acrobatic maneuver to save the remaining city from burning to the ground.

When he awakens from his coma, the Black Hatchet is in the arms of his nurse girlfriend, who thought he perished in the earthquake and fire. Together with Rose and the weary survivors, for the first time in four days, the sun rises over the smoky, skeletal remains and splashes their charred, optimistic faces.