In the last year, Robert E Howard's Conan The Barbarian has become an integral part of the contemporary Marvel Universe, with an active role in the Savage Avengers, a forthcoming futuristic 2099 one-shot, and a trans-dimensional crossover event featuring Moon Knight and other Howard characters, Dark Agnes and Solomon Kane.
Now, unlike some vocal online naysayers, I have no problems with these wild and wacky crossovers (this is the field of comic books after all), but going forward there seems to be a total absence of Conan adventures in the Hyborian age.
I don't mind the Cimmerian rubbing shoulders with superheroes... as long as he is still having (superhero-free) swords-and-sorcery adventures back in his own heroic fantasy world.
But, following next month's Serpent War (his crossover with the other Howard characters) and February's Battle For The Serpent Crown (another Conan in the modern age escapade), there have been no announcements about the on-going Conan The Barbarian, Savage Sword Of Conan, or Age of Conan titles yet.
Are these dead? Or just resting?
Is Conan now simply a loincloth-clad barbarian superhero fighting alongside Wolverine and The Punisher?
Are his days treading the blood-soaked soil of the Hyboria truly a thing of the past at Marvel?
I. for one, would not be happy if this were the case.
While I enjoy the contemporary era shenanigans (it's all fodder, if nothing else, for gonzo gaming ideas), I need my fix of Conan doing proper barbarian stuff in his own setting, the beautifully-crafted tapestry that is Robert E Howard's Hyborian Age.
Money is increasingly tight for comics these days, and I'd hate to think of any Conan-related title having to be cut.
|Cover art for issue one of five-issue mini-series|
A DEADLY QUEST AND A DARING HEIST…IN THE AGE OF MARVELS!
Conan wanders the desert, and as he reaches the city, no Stygian temple nor Vendyhan fortress greets him. No, something far stranger: the lights of Fabulous Las Vegas! Conan is far from home, and it’s time for him to tread the thrones of the Marvel Universe under his sandaled feet!
The City of Sin is just the beginning for Conan’s solo jaunt by Saladin Ahmed (Black Bolt, Miles Morales: Spider-Man) and Luke Ross (Savage Sword Of Conan), as the barbarian finds himself on a quest for a relic that predates even his Hyborian Age: the Serpent Crown of Atlantis! But will his battle for this crown earn Conan his own kingdom, or doom him to a nefarious trap set forth by Mephisto? Featuring a wide array of Marvel heroes and villains, this is an adventure you can’t afford to miss!