I'm actually going to cover more than I had intended to in this post, mainly because of the long, long delay involved... though it's still going to be shorter than last time, not that that's hard.
We pick back up with Shaman in the process of somehow summoning a space ambulance to take care of Angus McBride (who fell off a cliff and suffered an injury that permanently paralyzed his legs, in case you don't recall).
Shaman has pretty much the best house ever, by the way.
The space ambulance descends.
As McBride gets loaded onto a stretcher (Shaman is nowhere to be seen-not surprising, as he is later established as being so good at appearing and disappearing it actually almost calls into question whether he's still alive or a ghost-and I'm not joking), he drops a piece of kerium (that magical, powerful oh-so-useful rock that's an obvious analog for gold and also provides huge amounts of energy for technology, hence why everybody's after it).
Since it's now public knowledge that the most precious element in the universe can be freely found in fist-sized chunks and dug up with just a shovel, unsurprisingly there's a huge kerium rush to New Texas.
All things considered, this is about as good an explanation for why the heck a setting would be a space western as I can think of (certainly far better than the non-explanation of a certain other thing I've talked about-not Gun X Sword, the stuff below it).
Stampede gets really excited about the kerium rush, talking about how it'll bring the best and the worst, the good and the bad... Dang, he's drooling again.
Anyway, Stampede proclaims that he and Tex will be able to recruit an army from the greedy people who come to New Texas in the rush.
In the meantime, there is an arrival at the Galactic Marshal outpost. We see a rather amusing lineup of outer space lawmen.
The arrival, of course, is young Bravestarr.
Time passes quickly (for us).
This rapidly growing settlement is soon a thriving community, complete with this guy, who is holding nails in his mouth, spitting them so that they stick into things, and then hammering them all the way in with his fists.
His name (well, pseudonym, but that's for another time) is Handlebar, and he's the local bartender. And he is awesome.
Incidentally, a number of characters are members of Handlebar's species, Rigellians, and they vary greatly in appearance but are believable as variations of the same species. (In fact, a character who's going to show up in just a little while is one such.)
Another character who first shows up in this sequence is the local undertaker (the skinny, skeletal guy), who is constantly watching people for signs of illness and suicidal stupidity.
I am so not making this up: This character is an undertaker who is super-eager to bury people, in a cartoon for children. (Of course, he never says a word, and thus is essentially a walking funny background event...)
Anyway, Tex begins his recruitment drive with the help of the magic powers he got from Stampede. This sequence is rather silly in a lot of ways, but Tex also manages to be extremely creepy by teleporting around behind people.
His second recruit is Cactus Head, a robot who wears a cactus hat... and is mostly a head with bug legs. His special power has something to do with manipulating matter, which makes him redundant most of the time since Tex can do magic, but whatever.
The third is the Rigellian Vipra. Vipra is an odd case, as she is described as Rigellian, but doesn't display most Rigellian traits (stout builds, tremendous strength, and weighing enough to buckle wooden floors despite not necessarily being physically large) and sometimes talks like she only barely speaks English. If she is Rigellian, she's the only female one to appear that I know of (I've not seen the whole series, though). Perhaps she's "ambiguously Rigellian."
Her special abilities involve that giant mecha snake (which is pretty much just a fancy personal vehicle), which makes rather infrequent appearances, and her special gun which can paralyze people.
Tex is considerably more polite in his attempt to recruit Vipra...
...whether it's because of her mecha snake making her more dangerous to approach or for a... different reason is kind of murky.
His last recruit is Thunderstick, a robot who looks like he's modeled after a spaghetti Western villain and who has a hilarious mouth, and whose right arm is tipped by a blaster instead of a hand. Supposedly this blaster is very strong and makes him useful, but Tex just kind of waves his hand to make it fizzle and then drags him off, making me wonder if a normal recruit with a large gun would be more efficient.
Of note: ENERGY TUMBLEWEED.
With the regular villains who will make frequent appearances properly gathered... it's time to leave off 'til next time, as I've run out of screenshots. (I'm also having a bit of trouble finding the DVD at the moment.)
Next, Tex visits town, and this establishes a distinct need for improvements in law enforcement 'round these here parts.