Tuesday, July 2, 2013

King Conan: The Hour of The Dragon #2 - A Review

Tim Truman's masterful adaptation of Robert E. Howard's The Hour of the Dragon continues in fine form this month.  The action of this issue sees a young King Conan laid low by dark sorcery as his armies are routed by foreign invaders.  Locked away in a dungeon, Conan finds salvation at the hands of Zenobia - a comely slave girl, who has long harbored a crush on the foreign king.

As always, Truman stays close to the original Howard text, his only addition to the story being a framing device wherein an older Conan tells tales to a scribe recording the official history of Conan's reign as King of Aquilonia.  This allows Truman some creative license in his adaptation, deepening the character of Conan in ways the original text does not allow.  I'm not sure the word "sentimental" can be applied to Conan but I'm hard pressed to think of another word to describe any man who still carries the knife that was given to him by his future wife long after her death.

The artwork by Tomas Giorello and Jose Villarrubia is also as impressive as ever.  Giorello's dirty yet detailed style is a perfect choice for depicting the harsh world of Hyboria.  The gloomy yet vivid palette chosen by Villarrubia further heightens the glorious wonder of Giorello's penicls and inks.  

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