Overview

Conan The Cimmerian #0

Review

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Conan The Cimmerian #0

Credits

  • Words: Timothy Truma
  • Art: Tomas Giorello
  • Inks: Tomas Giorello
  • Colors: Jose Villarrubia
  • Story Title: Cimmeria
  • Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
  • Price: $0.99
  • Release Date: Jun 25, 2008

Conan is on his way to his homelands after his time as a vagabond and a thief. He meets a group of men set on battle and filled with hate for his people. In short order, Conan handles business.

This is an interesting start to the second great period of Conan’s life, by taking a poem written by Howard that express what Cimmeria meant in his mind and what it must have meant to the proud barbarian. When followers of Howard’s most famous creation learned that Conan was to be cancelled with issue number 50 there was some murmuring as to why. Those questions are answered here as editor Phillip Simon explains that Howard wrote about three great epochs in the saga of Conan. Conan the Cimmerian #0 marks the beginning of that second career cycle as we look forward to the time where he will be a mercenary.

Conan’s early stories are of a youth who has not really tasted his fill of fighting yet, with this new title, we find a more experienced man and that experience is beautifully described in the mix of Howard’s poem and the action that Truman scripts here. It is also exactly what a zero issue in this unique position should be, a completely transitional book. It hints at things to come and cleverly summarizes all that has passed in the previous title, working as a bridge between what the first book did and what the promise of these new stories entails.

The book ends that show we are being given this particular chapter of Conan’s life through the eyes of his creator are a nice touch. Dark Horse’s Conan books have been greatly concerned with Howard’s life. With essays detailing his life and craft along with the ever entertaining bio-strip “The Adventures of Two-Gun Bob”, Dark Horse has made sure to pay homage to the genius behind this character that has entertained generation after generation.

Giorello’s art here is striking in its detail and storytelling ability. The typewriter on the first page almost looks as if it has been photographed and then put through that process that made O Brother, Where Art Thou such a striking visual pleasure. Villarrubia’s magnificent coloring is as important to this effect and the overall look of the book as the pencils. His shading adds another dimension to the detail but also provides a kineticism that is not necessarily brought to play by Giorello’s thin lines. It is the kind of perfect pairing that every writer must pray for.

Admittedly, this reader had gotten off track with Conan a while back. With this issue, I not only want to read the further adventures, but have a keen mind to do some catching up while I wait. Busiek and Nord may have gotten this train out of the station and up to speed, but it seems that this new creative team is just as capable of finding its destination.

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