Script – Timothy Truman
Artist – Tomas Giorello
Color Artist – Jose Villarrubia
Letterer – Richard Starkings & Comicraft
Cover – Gerald Parel
Publisher – Dark Horse
I have said it before and I will say it again…King Conan: The Hour Of The Dragon is the best adaptation of a Robert E. Howard Conan story I have ever read. It just doesn’t get any better than this folks!
Issue #5 picks up with Conan sneaking back into the capitol city of Aquilonia, Tarantia, after his defeat, capture and then escape from Tarascus and the wizard Xaltotun. He goes it alone and in disguise. His mission? To free the Countess Albiona from the clutches of Valerius’s executioner. I don’t want to go into detail as to whether or not he succeeds…no spoilers here! I will say Conan soon finds out that he still has allies in his kingdom and discovers what he must do to defeat Tarascus, Xaltotun and Valerius. We also discover that King Conan’s enemies are more cunning than he knows. Can Conan complete his mission before Valerius’s minions run him down? You’ll just have to get issue #6, and the last in this half of the series, to find out!
Once again Timothy Truman’s adapted script is brilliant. The dialogue boxes used as a way to narrate the story as Old King Conan tells the tale to the scribe Pramis isn’t new by any means but it works really well with this particular story. Truman has Conan’s attitude and manner of speaking down perfectly “…a butcher’s tool for a butcher’s work” being a particular favorite Conan line of mine!
Art duties are once again handled beautifully by Tomas Giorello and Jose Villarubia, being both kinetic and vibrant. These guys are tops in illustrating barbarian ass-kicking at its finest. Gerald Parel as cover illustrator on this series gives the issues a cohesiveness that once again rivals the great Frazetta covers on classic Conan paperbacks.
Dark Horse has said that these first six issues will be followed up next year with another six issues to complete the story and I cannot wait that long Dark Horse! I guess I will have to get by somehow but I really hope they can keep the same team together for the second half. There is definitely a chemistry there that I would personally like to see on more of Howard’s Conan stories!
As I have with the first four issues, I, The Space Chief, with the blessings of Crom, have no choice but to give King Conan: The Hour Of The Dragon #5 a solid…
5 out of 5 nerds!