SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN #6 & MORE! [Mini-Reviews]

Aquaman #49 CoverAQUAMAN #49/ Script by KELLY SUE DECONNICK/ Art & Inks by VIKTOR BOGDANOVIC/ Additional Inks by JONATHAN GLAPION, DANIEL HENRIQUES & RYAN WINN/ Colors by SUNNY GHO/ Letters by CLAYTON COWLES/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

The sea god Mother Shark has restored Arthur Curry’s memories of Mera – the woman he loves and the woman who was responsible for his death. Can Arthur cope with the truth as he returns to the land of the living?

This issue is light on action and heavy on exposition, but I didn’t really care given how fantastic Kelly Sue DeConnick’s depiction of the Arthur/Mera relationship is. Their conversation felt like that of a real couple and the mutual love, respect and frustration both heroes feel for one another was readily apparent. I know this is setting up the high-action that is sure to dominate next month’s 50th issue but I could gladly read more of Mera and Arthur just being themselves without any pretense of court protocol or crowns or the baggage of their heritages getting in the way.

The highest complement I can pay the artwork is that I had no idea there were four artists at work on this issue until I looked at the credits. Bogdanovic’s attention to detail is astounding and Glapion, Henriques and Winn do a marvelous job keeping the ink levels consistent throughout the book. This may be Part Two of this storyline, but this is still a fantastic first issue for those readers who are curious about Aquaman after the movie.

5-5

 

Captain Marvel #7 CoverCAPTAIN MARVEL #7/ Script by KELLY THOMPSON/ Art by ANNAPAOLA MARTELLO/ Colors by TAMRA BONVILLAIN/ Letters by VC’S CLAYTON COWLES/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Inspired by a vision which showed her defeat at the hands of Doctor Strange, the Enchantress Amora has worked a spell that has forced Captain Marvel and Doctor Strange to trade bodies. Can two of Earth’s most stubborn champions work together and teach the other how to use their powers well enough to defeat Amora and save South America from an army of the undead?

Body-swap comedies are fairly commonplace even outside the realm of comics, but Kelly Thompson keeps things fresh by emphasizing the clash of personalities between Carol Danvers and Stephen Strange – not because they are so different but because they are so similar in temperament. It also helps the Black Widow is on hand to act as a snarky third-wheel who points out the stupidity of both of her allies, particularly after they fail to notice her being imperiled because of their squabbling. The artwork by Annapola Martello is a little rough in some points, yet is largely serviceable and well-colored by Tamra Bonvillain. Hopefully those readers who came here for the War of the Realms tie-in will stick around to enjoy this wonderful little series some more next month.

4-5

 

Justice League #26 CoverJUSTICE LEAGUE #26/ Script by JAMES TYNION IV/ Art by JAVIER FERNANDEZ/ Colors by HI-FI/ Letters by TOM NAPOLITANO/ Published by DC COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

As The Legion of Doom begin to enact Lex Luthor’s plan to save the universe by encouraging everyone on Earth to give into their base desires, the Justice League mobilize to counter him, though their membership disagree on the best way to go about it. While some recruit other heroes to the team and others start training the members they have to be better heroes, J’onn J’onzz goes off in search of Lex Luthor himself, not truly believing that the master villain is truly dead.

I’ve been hoping for a Justice League title to equal the old Justice League Unlimited series in scope and I think this book might be it. James Tynion IV does a masterful job explaining Scott Snyder’s saga so far while setting up the next stage of the Doom Vs. Justice conflict and balancing all the character cameos while still allowing for some quick, fun character moments. Paired with the art of Javier Fernandez and the colors of Hi-Fi, this is one fantastic comic and a great entry-level issue for those readers who aren’t yet reading one of DC Comics’ best titles.

5-5

 

Savage Sword Of Conan #6 CoverSAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN #6/ Script by MEREDITH FINCH/ Art by LUKE ROSS/ Colors by NOLAN WOODARD/ Letters by VC’S TRAVIS LANHAM/ Published by MARVEL COMICS

Review by MATT MORRISON

Drugged by a rogue seeking revenge for the death of his kin, Conan finds himself among the convicts sentenced to serve as a warm-up act for the fighters seeking the hand of a warrior princess in a battle royale in the arena. With his strength sapped and his wits dulled, this may be the greatest challenge of the Cimmerian’s life!

It is rare in these days when everything is written for the trade to see a one-shot comic book. It is rarer still to see one that tells a story well while being built upon a fine point of continuity. Yet Savage Sword of Conan #6 is such a story and a ripping yarn as well! Meredith Finch’s script builds upon an earlier Savage Sword story from the days of Roy Thomas, yet seems like something new even as she works with the usual sword-and-sorcery tropes. Luke Ross and Nolan Woodard bring this script to life an an epic fashion, crafting one fantastic looking comic full of vivid detail and intense action. A must-read for all fans of the genre and any Game of Thrones fans looking for a new addiction now that the show is ended.

5-5

About Matt Morrison

Matt "Starman" Morrison is The Grand Exalted High Macha of Raspur - a non-existent but real-sounding country. He has been writing about comics since before the word "blogging" was coined. He enjoys acting, role-playing, movie-riffing and sarcasm. You can follow his adventures on Twitter, @GeekyGeekyWays.

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