“Assassin’s Prey”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Mike Chen

Morgan and Shakira go off to their camp at the mouth of the Rampos river to meet Captain Hawk. When they get to the camp they are ambushed by the Vashek Assassins. Quick thinking and action allow the two to fight their way out and escape. They run into Hawk and with the Vasheks right behind them manage to get in the rowboat. Only now the boat is overturned by a fierce saurian that eats some of the crew. Morgan, Shakira and Hawk manage to make it to a boat nearby. On the boat is an elderly slave and a spoiled princess from the nearby island. The new arrivals take the boat back to this island and go on foot to the ruler of this island. While camping Shakira goes to hunt alone and Hawk spikes Morgan’s food to knock him out. Hawk wants to get the huge reward for returning the princess. The Vasheks use hang gliders to reach the island and ends with Morgan and Shakira trapped next to a waterfall. Meanwhile Jennifer was almost taken over by the gem of the Evil One. The gem is locked in a casket but Ashir taught Tinder how to pick locks and his lockpick is missing.

So we get the big confrontation with the dreaded Vashak assassins. Obviously Morgan is more than a match for them and manages to escape. He meets up with Hawk and once again the roguish pirate shows some bravery in fighting the Vasheks and mourning the loss of his men. He also betrays Morgan and leaves him for the Vasheks while he goes to get a reward all to himself. He is a fun character and its good that he’s back. Seem to be going through a bunch of different artists which is interesting to look at but I would like some more stability artwise for this series. Oh and the Evil One is once again getting closer to returning. A solid action issue with fascinating enemies in the Vashaks and the pirate Hawk.



“Devil’s Wings”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Ron Randall

Morgan is training his men when a rider comes with news. Lord Sabertooth is bring an army to reinforce Shamballah. With these reinforcements their plan to take Shamballah will fail. So he gets together a small strike force to lure the New Atlantean army away. Morgan is using himself as bait. It works perfectly as they manage to lure Sabertooth’s army into the Demonwing Valley. A valley inhabited by winged bat creatures. This further angers Sabertooth and he will have his army on a wild goose chase in the mountains.

Meanwhile Jennifer continues to try and find a way to control the gem of the Evil One but it seems to be taking her over. She has Ashir keep Tinder occupied which he does by teaching the boy how to pick locks. The Vashek assassins slaughter the camp that Morgan set up to trade with Captain Hawk and are waiting in ambush. Finally at the end Tinder manages to steal back his watch from Tara while she is swimming.

So this issue is another one that sets up some multiply threads that will start to come together in future issues. Morgan is loving his role as a guerrilla fighter and it was amusing to see him get the better of Sabertooth. A confrontation with the Vashek assassins is coming soon and so is the return of Captain Hawk. The Evil One is also looking on making a comeback soon. The only question is who will be end up possessing. Tinder is also foreshadowed to play a big part in the future stories. And finally the Tara/Morgan relationship is coming to another melodrama. A very enjoyable issue.


“Evil in Ebony”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artists: Alan Kupperberg & Pablo Marcos

Morgan and company ambush a patrol of New Atlanteans. He needed their armor so him and Krystovar can scout out Shamballah in disguise. They also take Shakira who will scout out the palace as a cat. When they arrive Morgan gets into a fight with a New Atlantean who was stealing fruit from a defenseless vendor. When Krystovar stops to bandaged the man’s severed fingers this cause some tension between the two. So they complete the mission and are heading back to camp but have not gone unnoticed. Saaba the witch follows in the form of a crow and brings to life an Earth elemental. Morgan and Krystovar manage to roll a boulder on it destroying it. But Saaba has overheard their attack plan for Shamballah and knows where their base is.

Meanwhile Tinder almost falls under the spell of the gem. Jennifer stops the Evil One from taking over his body in time and forbids Tinder from coming into the Evil One’s old lair until she can safely destroy the gem. The Vashek assassins have tortured the information from Captain Hawk’s first mate Pegleg. They now know where Morgan is to meet Hawk.

Well a lot happened in this issue. We see Shamballah under occupation and Morgan is starting to come up with a plan. I loved the tension that Krystovar’s act of mercy caused between the two. Morgan is angry because he thinks the enemy deserved to have his fingers cut off. Krystovar thinks it was needless cruelty. Both have strong convictions and refuse to back down. But both work together well and are still great friends.

There was some humor as Shakira while exploring the palace runs into a guard with some lizard dogs. He releases them and one comes running back in fear and the other is stabbed with a spear. Just a little black cat is in the room and he goes out shouting about a demon cat. The Evil One seems to be asserting himself and has targeted Tinder to be possessed. The Vashek assassins are coming closer to meeting Morgan. Finally Saaba is going to tell Lord Sabretooth where Morgan is so future issues are looking to be full of excitement.


Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Dan Jurgens

Morgan and company head back to their main rebel base after setting up the camp for Captain Hawk. When they come to cross a bridge they find a giant has taken it over. Morgan fights this giant and reminisces that it is similar to a fight he had with bully Danny Maddox as a kid. The action runs parallel with him fighting Danny and the giant. Only the fight as a kid just ends in a beat up bully while the present ends with a dead giant.

Later Jennifer Morgan remembers her childhood with her father reading her Robin Hood and other classic adventure. Later her mother dies and she is left with an aunt. In outer space the Monitor decides to take an interest in Morgan’s history and watches a recording of how he entered Skartaris. In Bakwele one of Patch’s men is hunted down and tortured for information on Morgan by the dreaded Vashek assassins. Tara when she comes back notices Tinder admiring her armband. This brings back a flood of memories on how she first met Morgan and got the watch.

So this was an issue with many little vignettes. It was basically to retell the origin for new readers. They did a good job in showing us old time readers some new material and not bogging the whole issue down in a retelling of the origin. Introduces Danny Maddox who will show up later in Morgan’s life. Interesting that even as a kid Morgan had white hair. Odd choice because I always assumed that it turned white when he got older. Also the issue gives us an introduction to the Vashek assassins who will become a major enemy for Morgan.


“Demons of Days Past”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Rich Buckler

The Wind Shadow has landed at the mouth of the Rampos and they are setting up a permanent base camp. Morgan goes off to contemplate recent events alone. He meets a mysterious old man who tells him that he is an important figure and the choices he makes will determine the fate of many. He disappears and Morgan goes back to camp. He wants to head out to the ruins of Shaban D’Aba. Back in issue 31 he broke the spell to this pyramid that the wizard kings hid their gold in. This gold will be used to purchase freed slaves and buy weapons for the growing army of resistance.

Tara insists on coming alone and the two have to fight some dinosaurs. They reach the temple and are met by local villagers who bring sacrifices to the demon that was freed. The demon a weird blob that materializes from smoke appears. It chases the two into the pyramid. Tara finds a bottle that manages to imprison the demon. Meanwhile Jennifer finds Tinder and Chakka under the spell of the Evil One’s gem. She frees them and takes the gem to study later.

This is a leisurely story for the Warlord. He has a lot to contemplate after his last adventure. Is he up to the task of being a legend. The mysterious old man gives some fortune cookie advise. What I really love about this issue is the introduction of dinosaurs. Skartaris is a world full of prehistoric dinosaurs and other dangers. It has been a while since this was shown and it is about time. Also nice that Burkett shows once again he has read the old Grell stories. He revisits the pyramid from issue 31. He gives it a new demon that was freed and it is a logical plot point that Morgan would want to salvage the gold in the pyramid. He is also starting to bond with his mate Tara. All in all a good solid entry.


“Innocence Avenged!”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Rich Buckler

Morgan finds out from interrogating the captain that took Avenel that the boy is held in the palace. Not an easy place to infiltrate but events might give an opening. Lord Sabertooth is in Bakwele because the incompetent governor has let the place become the center of the black market. When he finds out about the capture of Avenel he interrogates him and finds a very reluctant boy. Avenel believes in the legend of the Warlord which really sets off Sabertooth. He decides to make an example of him and have him publicly flogged. So Morgan sneaks into the palace through the sewers and attacks Sabertooth as he tells how much a coward Morgan was before he killed him. Instead Morgan disarms him and forces him to admit to being a coward. Then he swings to the tower Avenel is on and takes him away. Later he leaves to the disappointment of Avenel who though his hero would stay to drive out the invaders. Meanwhile Tinder falls under the spell of a gem in the Evil One’s lair.

The first issue without a back-up story and it was great. There was much more room for the story to develop and not seem hurried. So now Morgan is getting into the fight with the New Atlanteans. Here he establishes his reputation even more. He humiliates Sabertooth and saves the boy. Morgan does have to confront that he can’t be the miracle worker that his legend tells him to be. A bit unfair for Patch to chew him out for leaving instead of leading a revolt to take back Bakwele. It probably isn’t time yet so I can understand. There was some truth in her observation that Morgan is more of an adventurer than one who can do the hard work when the fighting is over. A great issue that had action, humor and some poignant moments.


“A Dream Rekindled….”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Dan Jurgens

Morgan and Scarhart have gone into the occupied city of Bakwele. They plan to meet up with the local head of the black market for supplies. While walking along some New Atlanteans try to impress them into carrying the litter of the governor. So they have to kick some butt and leave after knocking the governor into the mud. So they find the leader a beautiful woman named Patch. She has an eye patch courtesy of the New Atlanteans and a young son who has no father also courtesy of the invaders. The son Avenel has a naive belief that the Warlord will come to free them all. So they meet at the docks to conclude their transactions when a patrol ambushes them. They manage to escape but the young boy Avenel is taken prisoner. Meanwhile Tinder and his new friend Chakka find the old dwelling of the Evil One.

“The Judgement of D’Roz!”
Writer: Gary Cohn
Artist: Ron Randall

Jinal and the captured Qlov are taken to D’Roz. The ancients submit both to extensive exams. When they are finished both make their case to the ancients and both are denied aid. This really angers Jinal who vows that she will take what she needs even if she has to conquer the whole planet.

This issue we get to see the effects of the occupying New Atlanteans. Obviously they are very brutal. We also get some storytime with Scarhart. I didn’t care for the character but this issue I am starting to warm to him. Both him and Morgan make a good team. Patch is an interesting character and her son serves to remind Morgan of the dream that he started. A very poignant scene where he gets some tears after hearing the optimism of Avenel. Morgan’s dream as outlasted Morgan and now he must come to terms with what he started. We will see more of this in the next issue.

The Barren Earth comes to a conclusion in the Warlord. A short story but sets up for the new mini-series. A great development for now both series will have more room to develop.


“Bargain With the Devil”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Dan Jurgens

Morgan’s ship the Wind Shadow stumbles into the middle of a battle between a pirate ship and a New Atlantean galley. Since their ship was a former New Atlantean they are able to come alongside the ship and board it. After a brief fight they capture it. Now the pirate ship under the dread pirate Hawkins otherwise known as the Sea Snake wants some booty. They threaten Morgan but Morgan decides to bargain with him. Going over to this ship he makes a deal to pay for recovered slaves in exchange for gold. Hawkins being greedy agrees but has two of his crew sneak over to the Wind Shadow and capture Tara. He wants to use her as a bargaining chip. Morgan instead loads himself on a catapult and shoots himself to the pirate ship. With is pistol he threatens Hawkins and saves Tara.

“The City in the Sky!”
Writer: Gary Cohn
Artist: Ron Randall

Jinal and her companions now have a captured Qlov and on their way to rendezvous with D’Roz. The Qlov’s companions are after them in their globe ship. The group takes refuge in some ruins on a hill and set up the captured Qlov gun. While fighting both groups are trapped in a force field for the floating city of D’Roz.

So we have our first adventure for Morgan back in Skartaris. Time to get on to the fight with the New Atlanteans and a good start is capturing a ship and freeing slaves. This introduces a new character in the dread pirate Hawkins. A rogue with a fearsome reputation. A somewhat stereotypical good looking rogue that is morally challenged but deep down is a good guy. The character does work in future issues although at the time I had my doubts. A good solid story to introduce Morgan back to Skartaris.

The Barren Earth is coming to an end in Warlord. Another short story and we finally get to see the ancient flying city of D’Roz. The final installment next issue will set up the new mini-series.


“The Forever Man”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Dan Jurgens

Morgan, Krystovar and Shakira are back in their own time. They don’t have much time to enjoy it when an earthquake hits. It traps Morgan in a room. While exploring it he is confronted by a man that comes through the wall. A fight ensues that starts a fire. The fire knocks the mysterious man out and Morgan drags him to safety. He later finds out it is Dr. Reno. Reno comes around and tells his story. After Morgan left the Americans stored the old time ships in the cavern that they are in now. The time experiments had created this chamber as a point throughout time and accessible from any point in time. So the exiled Americans help build Atlantean science and peace and prosperity ensues. But Reno notices he doesn’t age. As time goes on and Atlantis becomes decadent Reno goes to the time cavern. There using his chronal energy in his body he travels through time and witnesses events.

Meanwhile the strange monkey saves Tinder from the giant spider. The story has Morgan and his friends sailing back to Skartaris. The weapons can’t be used because of the chronal radiation contaminating them. The ship they are one blunders into a battle between two ships.

“Capture the Qlov!”
Writer: Gary Cohn
Artist: Ron Randall

Jinal confronts the Qlov from last issue. She is the only one with an energy sword and manages to hold her own. But she is not capable of capturing it alive. Luckily her friends gang up on it and pin it so Yisrah can knock it out with a powder concoction.

So this issue is a wrap up of the Paradox story. We get to find out what happened to Reno and company. A sort of sad tale since Reno is destined to live forever alone. So now Morgan must get back to Skartaris and figure out another way of liberating is adopted land.

The Barren Earth is winding up its story in the Warlord for its new mini-series. Jin manages to capture a Qlov after a fun little fight. Looks like we may get some answers about the Qlov and the ancients next issue.


“Full Circle”
Writer: Cary Burkett
Artist: Dan Jurgens

Morgan is trapped in the void with the others. Another ship crashes into his and releases chronal energy that sends both ships into the real world. They crash and are immediately attacked by lizard birds. Luckily some men on triceratops call off the birds. They are from the Atlantean city of Challa-Bel-Nalla and its king Daemon. Daemon looks just like Deimos. So much so that Morgan tries to kill him. Shakira stops him at the last minute and they become guests.

Daemon is the ancestor of Deimos and just as evil. He is in league with the Red Moon Gods. He gives them experimental subjects in exchange for technology. Daemon also practices dark magic and finds out that Morgan is from the future and killed his ancestor. So he tries to arrange an accident during a hunt to kill Morgan. It backfires and later Shakira is captured and taken to the Red Moon.

Morgan with Krystovar uses one of their ships and goes to the Red Moon. Morgan finds out they are the same aliens that he met back in issue #18. He frees the experimental subjects and chases Daemon who stole his ship. The ship crashes and it transports Daemon into the void. The Red Moon ship is destroyed and the people are free. Later with the left over technology they are able to retrieve the other trapped ships. At the end Morgan, Krystovar and Shakira come face to face with their past selves who were retrieved from the void. Their presence causes the chronal radiation in Dr. Reno to go off and sends the three back to their own time.

So the third annual ends the Paradox story. It perfectly bookends the second annual that started this story. It tied up all the loose ends and we finally know the whole story. The Atlantean technology is the fusion of leftover alien tech and the knowledge of personal from the future. We see the origin of the beastmaking technology. Nice to see Jurgens incorporate the aliens from issue 18. They fit perfectly into this story. There was also some great drama with the Daemon character. A very poignant scene at the end where Morgan has the chance to end the threat of Deimos by killing his newborn son. Of course he couldn’t kill a baby.

So now the gang is back in their time and must continue the fight.