Writer: Jason Aaron
Art: Mahmud Asrar, Matthew Wilson, VC’s Travis Lanham, and Esad Ribic
Release Date: September 4, 2019
Gigantic spiders, man-apes, human-faced serpents, and godlike aliens all in this week’s CONAN THE BARBARIAN #9 by Jason Aaron. Conan has faced them all and lived to tell the tale! However, as these creatures from the past return, will Conan be powerless to stop them? Let’s cut a swath through this issue and find out!
Jason Aaron continues his tale towards the Crimson Witch in this week’s all-new adventure with little detail related to the overall story of Conan’s death and the heroic showdown with the dastardly diva that dates back to issue one. The narrative opens with massive confusion for this reviewer but the story pieces itself together by its radical conclusion. This fan’s biggest problem with the issue was Aaron’s cold open to the story after a month hiatus from the crusading chronical with little direction and guidance. This made the issue difficult to follow and took this reviewer out of the story numerous times finding myself struggling to remain focused as the comic concluded.
Even though this fan found the issue confusing at times, the epic battles between some of Conan’s most dangerous foes gave Mahmud Asrar the floor to truly test his amazing talents. The art was gritty, violent, and grabbed this reader’s attention with an abrasive edge that expressed an aggressive tone that only a few artists are capable of demonstrating in comics today. Asrar’s art is natural, earthy, and overly stimulating causing a powerful portrayal of Conan’s fighting prowess and unrelenting vigor. Fans new to Conan will truly be in aw of Asrar’s skill and ability on this comic making his art alone worth the cover price.
By the end of the issue, the direction of the issue became clear even with the perplexing cold open. However, this reviewer is beginning to get tired of mini battles that continue to fall short of the purpose behind the Crimson Witch and Conan‘s death. Readers are nine issues into the overall story arc and are still wondering about Conan‘s demise and his relationship to the evil enchantress. This reviewer is a huge Conan the Barbarian fan and immensely loves many of the stories Jason Aaron has written. However, answers are required after nine issues and some type of direction should be shared by this point. Fans may begin to forget the purpose of the overall narrative and begin to move on if the epic battle between the Crimson Witch and Conan doesn’t happen soon.
If you came to this issue looking for answers, you will not find them this week and may leave a bit disappointed. If you’re searching for a fun narrative about Conan fighting some of his most vicious villains, this issue is definitely for you. Readers need to dive into this issue accepting the fact that their questions WILL BE answered about THIS story alone. However, the larger battle with the Crimson Witch feels few and far between. If this reviewer doesn’t receive answers to the overarching plot soon, he very well might have to take a break from the series.