“Necronomicon Ex Mortis”
Writers: Chris Sims and Chad Bowers
Artist: Mauro Vargas

Alan Shepherd High School in Dearborn, Michigan. The janitor has to clean up the mess of the dead giant frogs and is really pissed about it. He would quit if he didn’t retire in two days. Unfortunately he won’t last that long. The evil takes possession of the dumpster he is dumping the corpses in and thus takes possession of him. Back in the principal’s office the detention students are demanding to know what is going on. Ash comes bursting in covered in something red. He was in the cafeteria and the condiments came alive and attacked him. The whole school seems to be possessed. They go to leave and find the trophy cases just outside. The trophy figures come alive and attack.

Later they find that the school now looks like a Salvadore Dali painting. The possessed janitor knocks Ash clear out of the room and he chases the others to the gym. Ash finds a portal that leads to his car. There he gets his shotgun and chainsaw. The janitor gets blown to pieces before Ash can do anything. Military commandos armed with shotguns and chainsaws come repelling from the roof. They announce the building is under quarantine by the Supernatural Military-Adjacent Response Team(S.M.A.R.T.).

This was another fun issue. Ash still goes around with this arrogant attitude. The whole school building is now possessed by the Necronomicon. We are also introduced to some special military unit tasked with dealing with supernatural threats. They also seem to be inspired by Ash. A fast paced story so far that keeps the reader interested for more.


“The Arena of the Frost-Dragon”
Writer: Elliot Maggin
Artists: Mike Vosberg and Vince Colletta

A big giant mute human is in an arena to entertain the Mygorg. He fights a frost breathing dragon and manages to kill it. This gets overshadowed by Starfire and her band of rebels attacking. They slaughter the Mygorg and free all the humans including the big giant who Starfire named Thump. The Mygorg need to track down and destroy Starfire so they use a skilled human tracker named Moonwatcher. He finds out they will attack a village and the Mygorg hide there to ambush Starfire. Only Moonwatcher decides to desert and warn her. They surprise the Mygorg and destroy them while liberating the humans. At the end Starfire is about to abandon the quest for the Lightning Lords becaues nobody can read the map. Only surprise Thump can and points the way.

This was another fun issue. A new writer he continues the wild adventure. We get some new characters in Thump who is a simple giant that is powerful but otherwise timid. Surprisingly he also can read Mygorg which is convenient to advance the story. Also a goofy looking guy that is a skilled tracker. He also thinks he can just take Starfire for himself but he gets his ass kicked by her. Starfire is very forgiving and thinks he will get with the program so to speak. I am enjoying this series.


“Demons of the Firelight! Part II”
Writer: Michael Fleisher
Artists: John Buscema & Ernie Chan

Conan rides with a handful of men to attack King Maklos. He sends out his army to crush Conan. Only it is a trap. Many more come poring out of hiding and fall on his troops. They easily reach the open gates and enter the city. Maklos blames the alchemist Gabrelle Pok and gives orders for his men to kill him. Pok flees but a thrown knife lands in his back. He manages to reach his lab an release his undead creation. This creature kills King Maklos and tries to kill Conan. Conan manages to lure it to a vat of acid and destroy the undead creature. His girl comes to confess she was putting lotus power in the fire to give him hallucinations. Conan tells her he knows and used it to convince Maklos that he was going mad and his men deserting. So it was actually her treachery that helped Conan obtain victory. So he forgive her because she is hot.

“In the Halls of Shilme”
Writers: Bruce Jones & John Buscema
Artist: John Buscema

Bront is captive of the amazons and being lead over a stone bridge. On a boat comes a figure with dead eyes that causes the bridge to collapse. He pulls Bront out and takes him to a castle. There Bront finds himself captive to this goofy wizard named Shilme. He frets about the clothes he got Bront and how interesting Bront is. He also has one of his undead servants attack him. Bront wins and finds out Shilme is a stone from the waist down.

“Behind the Scenes with Conan Executive Producer..Edward R. Pressman”
By David Anthony Kraft

An interview with the executive producer to the upcoming Conan movie. Tell his biography and how he got involved with the project.

“An Interview with the Associate Producer of the Conan Movie..Edward Summer”
By David Anthony Kraft.

An interview with the associate producer on the upcoming Conan film. Tell his biography and how he got involved with the project.

“Island of Pirates’ Doom Part VI”
Writer: Roy Thomas
Artists: John Buscema & Danny Bulanadi

Metallus and Valeria are captured by the pirate captain Gowar and his two men. Valeria is ties to a column and Metallus, who they think has two broken arms, has his feet tied and dumped next to her. They then start to break open the walls looking for the treasure. One pirate is killed by a snake. The other two break open the alter. Gowar pulls a gem he finds which causes the ceiling to collapse on them. Metallus manages to free himself and Valeria. Later they make it to the beach and see a merchant vessel coming. Metallus asks Valeria to marry him and she agrees to get to know him first. The end up kissing.

This was grab bag of an issue. The main story was enjoyable but really didn’t need to be a two-parter. It was clear it was meant for just a single issue. They decided to spend the first five pages in a recap of the previous issue to pad is out some.

The return of Bront was enjoyable. An offbeat story filled with action, humor and mystery. This was a good character for backup and I always enjoyed reading Bront.

The interview were OK if nothing special. I suppose at the time the movie was just released and of much interest to the readership.

Finally the conclusion to the Valeria story. That too seemed to have been dragged out more then it was originally written to be. Still I loved the story and it’s conclusion.


“Crawler in the Mist!”
Writer: Len Wein and J.M. DeMatteis
Artists: John Buscema & Neal Adams

Conan is riding in the Corinthian desert when his horse gets spooked by a snake and throws him. The snake bites Conan who passes out. He wakes to find himself on a camel. Three travelers found him. He also finds himself chained to one of the riders a small man named Rasto. The three are planning to sell Conan when they reach Shadizar. Not a real good idea since Conan yanks the man off his camel. He then swings the man around and knocks the other two off their camels. Free he takes Rasto and rides off to find civilization and someone to remove the chains.

They arrive at night at the city of Kamalla. It is shut down because a creature wanders it’s streets at night. Conan isn’t worried and with Rasto they go to sleep in the street. Conan later wakes to find a giant red slug taking Rasto. It snaps the chain and carries him away. Conan goes after the creature and follows to ruins outside the city. He battles a black slug creature and kills it by pushing a stone column onto it. He finds Rasto and the red slug but Rasto doesn’t want to be rescued. The slug then speaks to Conan. It is M’Najj and from another dimension. It has been taking those weak and infirmed to its world. It takes Rasto and Conan rides off.

The end of an era. This is the first post Roy Thomas issue. It looks like they rewrote the power records Conan comic. This was an interesting story. It had many of the elements that make Conan great. Conan’s drive to survive and remain free. Some big mysterious creatures. I do think this was a filler issue because they needed something quick. Still it was a competent issue and was a good sign that like it’s other series would be continue to be handled properly.


Writer: Saladin Ahmed
Artist: Luke Ross

Conan and Nyla are now prisoners of Imus Champion. They are hanging from chains when Champion comes with the Serpent Crown and scepter. He makes the chains disappear because with his new powers he can now control the minds of Conan and Nyla. He was supposed to have them sacrificed so Mephisto could be free. Only Champion feels he doesn’t need Mephisto anymore and can control the crown and scepter. He soon finds out that he can’t control it yet and losses his grip on the two. Conan is quick and knocks the crown off his head. A big fight ensues when Mephisto comes and takes Conan away. In a private conversation he feels that Conan is the only one who truly can control the power and in exchange for helping him, Mephisto wants Conan to free him. Conan naturally doesn’t trust the demon and refuses. So Mephisto returns him and decides to give up on Champion. Conan actually forces Champion to wear the crown and it’s power destroys him. Conan and Nyla go to a VIP surf and turf at a local casino to celebrate their victory.

The ending comes to a satisfying conclusion. Conan manages to overcome the power of the artifacts. Champion’s greed gets the better of him. Mephisto can’t convince Conan to side with him. I thought the series was well written. It had a fun plot that visits different places and Marvel characters. Nyla was a good sidekick. She showed a realistic humility at the end instead of a super Mary Sue. Yet she could hold her own and helped Conan in this wild quest. Luke Ross has very beautiful art which really made this series worthwhile. Nice to see some Marvel comics get it right.


Writer: Amy Chu
Artists: Maria Laura Sanapo & Giuseppe Cafaro

Jack Pulaski has come back to Drakulon only he is now a cyborg. Complete with Doc Octopus like arms. He also has an army of killer robots. So everybody has to retreat. Betty, Veronica, Dilton and the old man Viktor who is Pulaski’s younger brother go to Draculina’s castle. Because that is the only power source on the planet used to keep humans in a coma to drain their blood. Dilton with his cell phone gets the wormhole working again. The captive humans wake up and they are lead back to Earth. Vampirella and Draculina reconcile and join forces. They manage to distract Pulaski long enough for Sonja to sneak up and chop his head off. One of Pulaski’s cybernetic arms still manages to grab Draculina by the throat and strangle her.

This issue actually has a lot going for it. It was fast paced and kept the story going. I actually kind of liked it. Vampirella and her sister Draculina get back together and there is a tragic cliffhanger to end the story. The artwork looks good. I think Amy is starting to wrap this series up in a good way. I actually am looking forward to seeing how it all ends.


“The Siege of Lortnan Manor”
Writer: David Michelinie
Artists: Mike Vossburg & Vince Colletta

Some Mygorg are about to punish a young boy when Starfire and her band come to the rescue. She dispatches the leader and her men take care of the rest. The boy named Kyrse is grateful but his father Velg Lortnan is not. Velg is the human magistrate for the area and believes that Starfire has made things worse. This turns out to be true for the band they killed was an advanced guard to a much larger force. Now Starfire is trapped in a siege of the castle. The Mygorg commander uses a flying dragon that shoots lasers from it’s eyes. Starfire manages to lasso it and it crashes into the tower. Then she leads the dazed creature toward the Mygorg and the creature starts to attack the Mygorg.

Starfire is going to sneak out of the castle and Kyrse gives her a map. The map is supposed to lead to the Lightning Lords. A mysterious group that may have ancient weapons that can defeat the Mygorg. Kyrse decides to stay because of his father. This proves to be a mistake for his father is worried about Mygorg reprisals. So he wants to kill some rebels and gets a crossbow ready. Only he shoots an approaching figure and kills his only son.

The second issue continues to be an enjoyable story. Starfire is now a leader of a rebellion. She proves herself to be a great warrior and leader. We meet another human and he is basically a collaborator. Yet his son is a rebel who was going to be punished for reading a book. A very tragic ending to Kyrse. Another interesting revelation are these Lighting Lords. We find out that the Mygorg disdain all weapons other then those used in personal combat. An explanation why an advanced society has no guns. This looks like the main goal the writer sets up for our heroine is to find this society.


“Demons of the Firelight!”
Writer: Michael Fleisher
Artists: John Buscema & Ernie Chan

The Corinthian city-state of Turbin D’Qhat is losing a battle with forces of it’s rival Rh’Barr P’Hmbenn. Only it was a ruse and mercenaries under Conan spring a trap. The king decides to give a banquet to Conan and his mercenaries. Only it is a trap and armed soldiers attack. Conan with the help of a serving wench manages to lead the survivors through a secret passage to freedom. Now with his men he wages a war against the king. His success gains more followers as the army starts to desert. Yet every night Conan is woken by mysterious demons. He lashes out with his sword but they are figments of his imagination. Soon men desert because they won’t follow a madman. In fact it is the alchemist of the king who has the serving wench as his spy. Every night she puts a powder in the fire that causes Conan to hallucinate. Now with a handful of men he launches an attack on the city.

“The Day of the Sword”
Writers: Roy Thomas and Doug Moench
Artists: Dick Giordano & Terry Austin

A reprint from Kull and the Barbarians #3

“Barbarian SPFX Sorcery, Hollywood Style!”
By David Anthony Kraft

An article on the special effects from the upcoming Conan movie.

“Island of Pirates’ Doom Part V”
Writer: Roy Thomas
Artists: John Buscema and Danny Bulandi

Mettalus and Valeria decide to explore the one place that the temple with the treasure might be. It is the swamp and the two trudge through. They find an island with a temple. While exploring they are confronted by Captain Gowar and two of his men. They manage to disarm and capture the two.

This was an interesting issue. The main story had a solid idea of this mad king who betrayed Conan. Now Conan seeks revenge. Also his alchemist is on the side creating Frankenstein like creatures to fill his army that will conquer the world. A cool idea to have a spy put a powder that makes it look like Conan is going mad. I am interested how he managed to gain control over Conan’s girl who actually helped him out at the beginning. Also it seems Conan is going mad to attack a city with such few numbers. Left it on a good cliffhanger moment.

The Red Sonja story is a classic that gives us the origin. Since it originally appeared in an obscure magazine years ago it was a good idea to revisit it. Looks like they go some other artists to redo Howard Chaykin’s art. He only gets an inspired by credit.

The article was OK. Had some good pictures and I am sure whetted the appetite for the movie.

Finally the Valeria story is coming to an exciting conclusion. We get more than three pages and it also ends with a cliffhanger that keeps the reader’s interest.


“Part One: Detention!”
Writers: Chris Sims & Chad Bowers

An excited soldier runs into a command center with news of a possible T.P.O. involvement at a high school in Michigan. At that high school Ash is now teaching a history class. Teaching is probably a very loose definition. He is more like interrogating the students about their involvement with the Necronomicon. He does find out the popular kids are actually studying which makes him very suspicious. His next assignment is detention. The kids in it are basically just like the Breakfast Club. A jock, a cheerleader, a goth girl, a nerd and some other guy. They hear a commotion and find out it is coming from the science lab. The frogs have been possessed and attack. Ash squashes them then has to face a giant talking frog. Ash manages to find a blade and kill it. Back at the secret military base they study the images posted on social media. They think the Promised One is back.

So this was a really fun issue. Ash teaching is just hilarious. Like when he finds out they were studying fourteenth century Europe. “Oh that’s easy. It sucked.” Yeah he has a real knack for teaching. We get a fun little battle with possessed frogs from the science lab. Plus some mysterious secret government organization monitoring the situation. The writers really understand the character. So far this is starting out to be a very fun series.


“A War of Wizards!”
Writer: Roy Thomas
Artists: John Buscema & Ernie Chan

Conan is riding to Akkharia a city-state in Shem to join a mercenary army. He is confronted by a ghostly visage of the wizard Zukala. Zukala has a job offer for Conan which is easily refused. Conan wants nothing to do with wizards. So he arrives at Akkharia and meets Red Sonja who has also come to join the mercenary army. The two go to breakfast and during the discussion the topic of Belit comes up. Sonja decides to taunt Conan that she left him and this gets him angry. Conan strikes Sonja and this starts a swordfight. A fight that Conan wins. Since he beat her he now can bed her since that was the vow Sonja took. She is not very excited and Conan is still in a bad mood over having memories of his lost love. So he leaves the city and Zukala again approaches him. This time he offers to bring back Belit if Conan will kidnap the Ibis priest Kuthchemes.

Conan agrees and goes back and kidnaps Kuthchemes. Sonja tries to stop him but the priest was using his knockout powder and accidentally knocks out Sonja. So Conan scoops up both and takes them to Zukala. Zukala wants to kill Kuthchemes himself since the priest took his job as wizard to the king in Akkharia. Zukala also wants Sonja since the spell has to trade a woman’s soul for one being brought back. He also summons a demon to enforce this. Conan at first decides to go along with this but comes to his senses. He frees Kuthchemes who destroys the demon. Conan chops off Zukala’s head. Everyone goes there separate ways.

This is the tenth anniversary of the Conan the Barbarian comic. So a double size issue was released. It is also sadly the last issue that Roy Thomas would write. He decided to move on to DC. There would be a few more stories he wrote released as annuals but this is the final regular issue. He did go out on a high note with this last issue. It is fitting he did the tenth anniversary before moving on. It amazes me that he literally wrote all these Conan issue for ten years. He really had a passion for Conan and it showed. He really went all out on this. He brought back Red Sonja and the wizard Zukala. Also the Ibis priest Kuthchemes. We had a real reflective Conan as he has still not come to terms his love Belit is dead. His grief actually drives him to do stuff he wouldn’t normally do. Thankfully he comes to his senses. A worthy sendoff to a very talented writer.