Saturday, April 21, 2007
Well, theoretically all the issues of Savage Sword of Conan that I need to complete the run are in the mail, heading my way. Barring any unforeseen occurrences I should have the entire series soon. I've been slowly reading my way through the stacks of comic magazines as they've arrived. I've noted a couple of things that I'll probably expand upon later. Briefly, I've noticed that Michael Fleischer wrote far too many issues after the departure of Roy Thomas around issue 60.
Fleischer didn't seem to 'get' Conan and did a lot of very super hero-ish stuff, attempting to add continuing super villains and such. Not all of his stories are bad, but many are. He was fortunate to have John Buscema pencilling a lot of his issues though, so the art saves a lot of the weaker stories.
Chuck Dixon comes in around issue 100 and does a much better job. Dixon seemed to like the frontier type Conan adventures, setting most of his stories around the time of the Robert E. Howard tale, 'Beyond the Black River.' His stories are full of mercenaries, savage tribes of Picts, and snow covered wide open spaces. Overall I like Dixon's work on Conan. he did seem to understand the character and his Conan is closer to REH's work. Dixon also tended to base most of the sorcery in his stories on Lovecraftian themes, so there's a lot of that old time Weird Tales feel to many of the issues. There are some stand out issues art wise as the series progresses and I'll talk more about that later. Anyway, once all 235 issues are here, I'll let you know.