Conan the Barbarian #11
Script by Brian Wood
Art by DeClan Shalvey
Colors by Dave Stewart
Letters by Richard Starkings and Comicraft
Cover by Massimo Carnevale
Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: December 12, 2012
Cover Price: $3.50
Conan the Barbarian #11 is the second part of “The Death” story line. For my money, this has been THE best arc of Brian Wood’s 11 issues. When we last left Conan, things were grim. Both his lover, Belit, and the crew of their ship, had taken ill with some kind of plague or sickness that was killing them off one by one at a pretty fast rate.
Brian Wood does, in my opinion, his best writing of his Conan career in this issue. As Conan reluctantly leaves Belit and his shipmates to go out and find a cure for what’s ailing them, Belit and the crew continue to get worse. Conan must go through a bunch of locals to get to a healer, and then, things just get worse from there. I will say, this issue gives us Conan, not as a barbarian, but as a HUMAN BEING. It’s really quite jarring and emotional…and I LOVED IT!
Yes, I love seeing Conan decapitate armies and fight dragons and take on hot girls that turn out to be ugly otherworldly creatures, but this was something BRAND NEW for a character with such a long history. Wood really moves the character forward and in a new direction here.
DeClan Shalvey is a fantastic artist, and he was born to draw this book. I seriously mean that. He doesn’t go over the top with steroid looking body building type physiques. All this characters look like they could be real human beings. Nothing is over the top, and the way he conveys emotion through his drawings is unbelievable. I hope that Dark Horse can plant this Shalvery on this book for awhile, because I for one would love it!
A totally different king of Conan. Yes, there’s fighting. But there’s also emotions. And real humanity added to the character. And I loved it.