Saturday, March 5, 2011

One Good Thing And One Bad Thing About King Conan: The Scarlet Citadel #1

GOOD THING: A new mini-series from the writing and art team that worked on the late Conan The Cimmerian title together for two years, adapting one of Robert E. Howard's most beloved stories? What's not to like?

BAD THING: The only flaw this story really has is that Truman chose to use a framing device to tell it. While it makes sense for the story to be related in this way - with Conan, as an elder king, dictating the tale to a scribe for a history of his adventures - I fear this might be a bit anti-climactic to those readers who haven't read the original story.

Of course, we know that Conan will survive the events that he is describing. We know that he survives the dangers of his youth and becomes King of Aquilonia by his own hand. And while it is still possible to add drama into the tales of Conan's adventures in spite of this fact, it does spoil the tension a bit to have the final cliffhanger of the book be Conan facing down a giant snake when we already know he lives.

The Final Verdict: It's Tim Truman and Tomas Giorello, together again, adapting one of Robert E. Howard's best Conan stories. Despite my grousing about already knowing how it is, I must say this is an enjoyable issue and a must-read mini-series. Newbies to Conan will get a lot more out of it than us old-timers, though.

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