Wednesday, November 29, 2023

Comics Review: "CONAN THE BARBARIAN #4" Closes First Arc

TITAN COMICS/Heroic Signatures

STORY: Jim Zub
ART: Roberto de la Torre
COLORS: Dean White
LETTERS: Richard Starkings of Comicraft
EDITOR: Matt Murray
COVER: Roberto de la Torre
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: Giada Marchisio; Nick Percival; Cary Nord; Roberto de la Torre
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (November 2023)

Suggested for mature readers

“Bound in Black Stone” Part IV: “Vengeance of the Lost”

Conan the Cimmerian was born in the pulp fiction of Robert E. Howard (REH), first appearing in the magazine, Weird Tales (1932).  In 1970, Marvel Comics brought Conan to the world of comic books via the title, Conan the Barbarian. With only a few pauses, Conan comic books have been published for the better part of five decades.

Titan Comics and Heroic Signatures are the new producers of Conan comic books, and they start with a new Conan the Barbarian series.  It is written by Jim Zub; drawn by Roberto de la Torre; colored by Dean White and José Villarrubia; and lettered by Richard Starkings.  The new series finds Conan returned to his homeland of Cimmeria just when it faces a terrible new threat.

Conan the Barbarian #4 (“Vengeance of the Lost”) opens inside the Citadel of Black Stone.  There, Conan sinks into the depths of the abyss beneath the black altar.  Now, Conan will learn the secrets of the band of undead Picts known as the “Tribe of the Lost.”  In order to find victory, Conan must hear the words of Brule, Chieftain of the Borni Tribes.  Is this legendary figure a wraith or salvation?  And can he point Conan towards victory?

THE LOWDOWN:  Titan Comics has been providing me with PDF copies of their publications for review for several years now.  Conan the Barbarian #4 is a recent arrival.

I am happy to see that Titan's new Conan the Barbarian series ends its first story arc after only four issues.  If I had my way, other comic book publishers would do this more often.

As I said in my review of the earlier three issues of this series, Titan Comics and Heroic Signatures' revival of the Conan the Barbarian comic book series is definitely edgier than Marvel Comics' 2019 revival.  Writer Jim Zub has recalled the ass-thumpin, p***y-pounding, blood-splattering pulp storytelling of Roy Thomas.  Zub's ending to this first story arc is his own dark and mysterious concoction that offers escape more than total victory for Conan.

Artist Roberto de la Torre has brought Zub's script for this final chapter to comic book life in a veil of magic, smoke, and mysticism, whereas the earlier issues were all fire, blood-and-guts, and mountain-leveling thunder.  Dean White brings the magical mists of confusion to de la Torre's art, while Richard Starkings' lettering gives it the ominous soundtrack that it needs.

Seriously, dear readers, if you love Conan comic books, you will hate yourself for denying yourself this new Conan the Barbarian.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Conan comic books will want to try Titan Comics and Heroic Signatures' Conan the Barbarian.

[This comic book includes the essay, “Robert E. Howard and His Ages Undreamed Of” Part Four, by Jeffrey Shanks.]


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

The text is copyright © 2023 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog or site for reprint and syndication rights and fees.


Amazon wants me to inform you that the affiliate link below is a PAID AD, but I technically only get paid (eventually) if you click on the affiliate link below AND buy something(s).

No comments:

Post a Comment