Ryan Thomason

King Conan: Hour of the Dragon, Issues #1 – #4 Reviewed

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Come, sit. Crom…child, take this skin of wine and listen. Listen as I tell you a story. You asked for one, by Crom you’ll get one. A story of how Conan met the second woman to ever truly claim his heart. Drink steady, listen, I may not speak it again.

hourdragon3Ok, I lied, I will speak it again. King Conan stories are probably some of my favorite ones. Remember how at the end of the Conan movie starring a certain Schwarzenegger Conan is sitting on a throne, just looking bored as hell. Well that kingdom Conan claimed is Aquilonia, he took it over after choking out the king that was currently in charge on the throne. But that isn’t this story. Hour of the Dragon is the only novel that Robert E. Howard wrote on Conan. It’s being adapted into two six-issue miniseries and we’re close to being done with the first. It was my intention to wait until the first six-issues were out so I could do a review on the full scope of things.

Obviously, I couldn’t help myself.

Timothy Truman has been outstanding so far on the story, I’m engaged, Crom, I’m engaged. I don’t know what it is though, but there is something incredibly familiar about this story. It has nothing to do with the novel, but it’s just that turning the pages I feel like I’m seeing it all for the first time and seeing something that just feels right at home with me. The pencils by Tomas Giorello and colors by Jose Villarrubia compound on the story and really deliver a visual that is what you want when you’re looking a muscled bare chested barbarians cutting up his foes with a sword. Ok, maybe that seemed a little heavy breathing about Conan, but lets just say the artwork from the landscapes to the characters are all very, very well done.

The story, like I said, is Old King Conan telling a scribe about how he met his second love of his life, Zenobia. Though, like most Conan stories, it involves a lot of bloodshed, betrayal, and good ‘ol fashion sorcery. Xaltotun is a resurrected sorcerer that after being revived from his three thousand years of being a corpse, forms an alliance with the ones who brought him back. Obviously, the new alliance is after Conan’s claim to Aquilonia. Obviously, I don’t want to give too much away, that would just be me being a jerk. If you have any love for everyone’s favorite Cimmerian though, you should be reading this. I always suggest buying/downloading from Dark Horse Digital to save yourself a trip to the comic book store.

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