'Barbarism is the natural state of mankind,' the borderer said, still staring somberly at the Cimmerian. 'Civilization is unnatural. It is a whim of circumstance. And barbarism must always ultimately triumph.'

-Robert E. Howard
Beyond The Black River

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Conan the Barbarian: Issue #2 (2019) "The Savage Border"

January 16th 2019 and a new Conan is out! YAY! Some people had mixed things to say about the last issue, however *MOST* people seemed to agree with my high rating of the new book. Can #2 keep the pace? Lets find out!



Writer: Jason Aaron
Artist: Mahmud Asrar
Colorist: Matthew Wilson
Letterer: VC's Travis Lanham
Cover Artist: Esar Ribic

Another interesting entry into the world of Conan. This time Jason takes us across the Black River into the realm of the Picts. This tale is solidly set in the Robert E Howard's world, but again tells a new tale of Conan that fits in right against the original tales told his creator. The art by Mahmud Asrar is again solid, with some exceptional panels thrown in for good measure. You can follow him on Instagram to see what else he is up to. The coloring by Matt Wilson is solid and you should of course follow him over on Instagram as well!

The cover is a great image of Conan in combat with the Picts, Esad Ribic does some awesome work on Conan, a quick search on google brings up an awesome array of Conan art

Coming into the book we have a map of the Hyborian Age with a blood splatter over the Pictish Wilderness letting new readers know where in the world of Conan they are. It is a nice touch for new people less familiar with the story.

I liked the first book but I am still cautiously optimistic before reading an issue. I thought this one to have more dialogue than the first, which gives it a slightly more complex story, but at it's heart it is still a Sword and Sorcery tale. It is also one where we see a lot of Conan being not civilized, being a barbarian.

I again liked this issue and felt it was a pretty strong entry into the Conan story, even if I felt it to be a little wordy at times. Don't get me wrong, this issue still has it's share of blood, combat and wine. There are more panels of Conan kickin' ass than Conan talking.

I am going to drop my art rating by 1/2 of a point, which simply reflects my wish to see more of the AWESOME panels. The panels showing wider areas are generally less detailed, which is common in comics, but i'd rather see them as the awesome panels Mahmud draws. In addition I think I am going to raise the story point by 1/2, because it so neatly fits into Howard's world, without rewriting one of his stories. I am going to leave the rest of the ratings where they are giving us a total of 4.4, which we will call 4.5!

Art:

Story:

Cover:

Sword & Sorcery:


4.5 out of 5 Skulls of My Enemies!

Can't wait for #3!

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1 comment:

  1. I agree. This was a fantastic issue. One of those rare issues where Conan is not flat stereotype, but you see that complexity through another character, the shaman in the story.

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