Monday, August 31, 2009

Conan and the Tower of the Elephant

I recently re-read the third trade paperback of Conan-related original (new) comics by Dark Horse. I own the first four trade paperbacks, and didn't buy any beyond that because the creative team changed and I was leery of getting burned. I have, however, since Interlibrary Loaned books five and six, hence my re-read through.

But I'm taking my time. Lots of stuff to occupy myself, so blasting through comic books isn't the top priority on my mind.

That said, I'm still really enjoying this. This one was a bit unusual; "The Tower of the Elephant" itself, as the "starring role" story of this collection and a Howard original, was inferior in my opinion, to the secondary new creation by Busiek and team, which had a nasty Lovecraftian entity formed as a side-effect of Conan's theft of a magic crown. Conan's girlfriend was inadvertently eaten by this creature, who kind of looked like a jelly maggot, while fighting with another ex-lover over who got to enjoy the spoils of Conan's successful thieving career.

The hounds of Marduk, who only appeared as a footnote, were also very interesting, if nothing else for their visual design.

Part of the reason I really like this one is because Conan is in Zamora, in the Maul, a stereotypical, debauched fantasy city, not unlike Lankhmar in many ways. It's an environment that I love for my fantasy, and here Conan spends most of the TPB in that exact environment.

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