Conan The Barbarian #7 (Marvel Comics)
Marvel’s wasted no time using the Conan license to full effect, but of the many series that they’re putting out starring Robert E Howard’s Cimmerian, none have been able to touch the main Conan The Barbarian series by Jason Aaron and Mahmud Asrar. While the opening story has been a bit of a slow burn, Aaron’s filled the opening issues with cool looks into the Barbarians long and storied career as a hunter, king, and soldier, the seventh issue is no exception.
One of the great things about Jason Aaron’s run is how well he subverts expectations with this character. The opening of this issue starts off in a very potentially un-PC way, but within a few pages you realize that what you think is going happen clearly isn’t, and leads to a conclusion far different than you could ever imagine. I’m not going to spoil exactly what kinds of surprises Jason Aaron’s script has in store for you, but it’s really cool to see Aaron take his love for this character and use it to try and tell new stories for the character when he could have just phoned it in and told the same stories we’ve seen hundreds of times with Conan.
Mahmud Asrar’s art is still rock solid, and he clearly is having a blast drawing this book. While this issue doesn’t feature as many creatures as I would’ve liked, Asrar’s line work is still fantastic, bringing a murky and dirty quality to Conan’s world that’s actually more beautiful than how I’ve described it.
Conan The Barbarian continues to be a rock solid sword and sorcery comic that actually goes beyond what the character is known for. In a lot of ways, this arc could go down as not only one of the best in the character’s long career, but also in Jason Aaron’s career as well. It’s certainly reinvigorated my interest in the character and his world, and that’s something that I never thought would have happened.