I’m a rabid fan of Robert E. Howard and his creation, Conan the Cimmerian. I am not, however, so much of a fan of a lot of what’s been done in his name. The comics, video games, and movies are often entertaining, but not especially good. And they rarely seem to notice the original source material, much less stay true to it. So, on that rare occasion when they do, I take note. When Dark Horse comics re-launced Conan as a comic a decade or so ago, they put Kurt Busiek on it, and he did an excellent job. His handful of volumes were the best Conan comics I’ve ever read. They were helped by Cary Nord’s almost Frazetta-like art, but Busiek had the voice and the spirit, and made the world feel alive in a way nobody else had since the originals.
Joshua Dysart has not quite reached that level, but he’s done a fine job in Midnight God. Here we have an older, sadder, more morose Conan, uncomfortable in his acquired power. Living as a king doesn’t suit the man, and it shows. So, when a reason for action presents itself, Conan grasps at it like a drowning man. Family tragedy is nothing next to the possibility of stretching his muscles and feeling the sun on his shoulders. I like that it deals with how awful it must be to be married to Conan, too.
I like the art by Will Conrad. It has clean lines, good coloring from Juan Ferreyra. The whole thing works well in creating a world. I did get a chuckle out of how fast Conan’s shirt went missing once the action picked up. It didn’t take long for him to be down to his tattered kilt. At least he started dressed properly.
This makes a nice, stand-alone story from a period of Conan’s life that rarely gets touched upon. Nothing ground shaking. But a worthy read.
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