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#184398 - Mon Jul 14 2003 07:41 PM CONAN and other Robert E. Howard / pulp material in comics
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 21566
Loc: A glorious bold new America

"Know, O Prince, that between the years when the oceans drank Atlantis and the gleaming cities, and the years of the rise of the sons of Aryas, there was an Age undreamed of, when shining kingdoms lay spread across the world like blue mantles beneath the stars...
Hither came Conan, the Cimmerian, black-haired, sullen-eyed, sword in hand, a thief, a reaver, a slayer, with gigantic melancholies and gigantic mirth, to tread the jeweled thrones of the Earth under his sandaled feet... "

  • ( click on image to see full-size enlargement )

The sheer quality of the 1970 launch of CONAN THE BARBARIAN, followed by SAVAGE TALES (1971), and SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN (1974), set a new standard of sophistication for writing and illustration in comics.

CONAN and SAVAGE SWORD both had enduring high-quality runs, which concluded in the mid-1990's. Which were followed at the end with later admirable short-lived mid-1990's revival efforts, CONAN THE ADVENTURER (1994-1995), CONAN THE SAVAGE (1995-1996), and the most recent Cross Plains reprint of Thomas/Conrad's BRAN MAC MORN: WORMS OF THE EARTH, and Dark Horse's reprint of Thomas/Conrad's ALMURIC, among others, each of whose quality speak for themselves. Some of the finest comics storytelling work of the last 35 years.

But as well-told and engaging as these early 1970's Conan adaptations are simply as great storytelling, they had other effects on the comics industry when they were published:

1)BROUGHT A GREATER DIVERSITY OF GENRES. The success of CONAN in 1970 brought a whole lot of other non-superhero material to the field.
They expanded on the simultaneous resurgence of mystery and monster books (HOUSE OF MYSTERY, SWAMP THING, CREATURES ON THE LOOSE, FEAR, MONSTERS ON THE PROWL, etc.), as well as paving the way for a flood of Edgar Rice Burroughs material at DC, such as TARZAN, KORAK, WEIRD WORLDS.
As well as opening the door for other fantasy books, such as SWORD OF SORCERY, STALKER, BOEWULF, CLAW, and ultimately for me, Grell's THE WARLORD.
And CONAN's success also brought other pulp adventure and crimefighters from the 1930's, such as THE SHADOW, JUSTICE INC., DOC SAVAGE and many more.

2. CREATED A MORE SOPHISTICATED AND CULTURED FAN MARKET. On the heels of Barry Smith's run in the first 24 issues of CONAN, and "Red Nails" in SAVAGE TALES, Barry Smith began Gorblimey Press, releasing a number of beautiful prints and portfolios, that still grace my walls.
Although Steranko was already publishing COMIXSCENE / MEDIASCENE / PREVUE and his celebrated HISTORY OF COMICS, volumes 1 and 2, when Smith left Marvel in 1973 and started Gorblimey Press, I think it was Smith's posters and limited prints that brought the sophisticated sense of book illustration, pulp roots, adventure literature, science fiction illustration and pride to comics fandom.
And for a time, SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN, with its articles, pin-up portfolios of artists, and ads about comics fandom, provided a window to more adult (in a refined and sophisticated sense) material in comics fandom.

SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN was a spearhead for the kind of material in comics I've long admired, and missed in comics since the late 1980's:
Richard Corben's fantasy/horror material, HEAVY METAL, EPIC ILLUSTRATED, WARRIORS OF THE SHADOW REALM, The Studio art book (Jones, Kaluta, Windsor-Smith, Wrightson, for me the single best representation ever of the comic book art field), Pacific Comics, Eclipse, and so much else that collectively have made comics such an enduringly rich entertainment medium for me over the last three decades, all came forth from CONAN THE BARBARIAN and SAVAGE TALES.

Crossgen's current new BRATH series attempts to re-create Conan and other Robert E. Howard characters, although I find it a rather weak and unsophisticated attempt, with nothing really original in its equation.

Roy Thomas and Tim Conrad's "Worms of the Earth" (SAVAGE SWORD 16 & 17) and "Almuric" (EPIC ILLUSTRATED 2-5) adaptations offered far more than the recent BRATH offering.

As did Scott Hampton's 1988 graphic novel for Eclipse, PIGEONS FROM HELL.

It's amazing to me in recent years how many truly horrible Conan miniseries have been done. I just can't stomach the art in the newer Conan miniseries. And I'd think the best artists would be lining up to draw Conan and other R.E.Howard material. But somehow the well has dried up.

I wonder what can be done to revive the era of experimentation that existed and evolved out of the Robert E.Howard/CONAN material, and the wonderful art, portfolios, adaptations, and fine-art of comics it inspired.

So... what are some of your favorite CONAN/Robert E. Howard adaptations?

Or what are some other great pulp/adventure work adapted to comics, such as Edgar Rice Burroughs, H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Robert Louis Stevenson, Edgar Allan Poe, Arthur Conan Doyle, Bram Stoker, and others from the pulp era?

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen movie satisfied my itch for pulp-style action better than anything else out recently, including the Alan Moore/Kevin O'Neil comic that inspired it.

Any well-scripted and illustrated pulp offerings in comic book form in the wings? Or possibly one I missed?

#184399 - Mon Jul 14 2003 09:14 PM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics
Pig Iran
Offline Kisser Of John Byrne Ass

Registered: Sat Feb 10 2001
Posts: 16240
Loc: Salma Hayek's Heaving Bosom
Chaykin/Mignola Fafhrd and Grey Mouser, Buscema/Kubert Tarzan, Smith/Buscema Conan-King Conan, Kane John Carter, Thorne/Buscema Red Sonja , Thorne Ghita, and Loisel/LeTendre Roxanna are some of my most treasured books.

In the same vein the Jones/Anderson Kazar is absolutely amazing.There werea few decent Andru?Buscema/deZuniga Shanna and kazar stories. I also really liked the Gonzalez drawn Vampirella and Colan Tomb of Dracula stuff....

#184400 - Wed Jul 16 2003 10:11 AM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics (Lieber, Burroughs, KA-ZAR, etc)
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 21566
Loc: A glorious bold new America

Originally posted by Pig Iron:
There were a few decent Andru/Buscema/deZuniga Shanna and Kazar stories. I also really liked the Gonzalez-drawn Vampirella and Colan Tomb of Dracula stuff....

Yes, Pig Iron, FAFHRD AND THE GREY MOUSER by Chaykin and Mignola is on my list of series to buy.

(click on cover to see larger image)

The Joe Kubert issues of TARZAN (issues 207-235, from 1972-1975, adapting Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan of the Apes, The Return of Tarzan, and Jungle Tales of Tarzan) are also among my favorites. I consider this to be the definitive Tarzan adaptation, better than any movie version.

I was less impressed with the later Roy Thomas/John Buscema TARZAN (1977-1979) series for Marvel. Which was okay, but read too much like their CONAN THE BARBARIAN run, and for me didn't have the same magic as the Kubert TARZAN issues, or Thomas/Buscema's own CONAN work.

The Frank Thorne RED SONJA was also good reading. I love Thorne's art, somewhat similar to Kubert's.
Thorne's later GHITA series (a somewhat more sexually graphic ceator-owned version of Red Sonja that Thorne later did) is one I sampled but never got around to collecting.

Both (Red Sonja and Ghita) are beautifully parodied in CEREBUS (issues 3 and 19, and later issues).
CEREBUS is another series that's a great outgrowth of the Robert E. Howard adaptations. An innovative, playful and intelligent expansion that goes in a lot of interesting directions, from its original Conan-parody origins.

I actually like the Roy Thomas/John Buscema CONAN issues you mention as much as the Thomas/Barry Smith issues, each in their own way.

But when Thomas/Buscema began SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN (with wonderful inks, mostly by Alcala) and 50-plus pages an issue, that really allowed the adaptations to breathe, I think the heart and soul of their Conan work moved from the CONAN comic book to the SAVAGE SWORD magazine.

The KING CONAN series is one I still haven't fully explored. I have some scattered issues.

The Marv Wolfman/Gil Kane JOHN CARTER, WARLORD OF MARS series for Marvel is one I'd completely forgotten. But that's a good series too. One of the lesser-known treats of that run is a fill-in issue (circa 1978) by a then-unknown Frank Miller, and it's a nice art job too (issue 18).

I especially liked the Murphy Anderson "John Carter" adaptations, a backup series in TARZAN, and then continued in WEIRD WORLDS.
And "Pellucidar" by Dennis O'Neil and Alan Weiss,
one episode in Korak 48, and also continued in WEIRD WORLDS.

Another incredible series that is seldom mentioned is the Kaluta backups in KORAK 46-56, adapting "Carson of Venus", and I think one final backup in TARZAN 235, after KORAK was cancelled.

ROXANNA is not a series I've read. I believe that's a European series. I think I saw a collected album of these once, but have never read them.

I agree with your assessment of the Bruce Jones/Brent Anderson KAZAR series (issues 1-27, from 1981-1983). Anderson left with issue 19, but if anything, the stories became even more engaging in the issues after Brent Anderson left the series, when art was done by Ron Frenz and Armando Gil. This was a book with some wild and often hilarious twists. Very well done.

There was a great "Shanna" backup in a few issues of the HULK magazine, with gorgeous pencil art by Tony DeZuniga. One I particularly like is in issue 9.

Wolfman/Colan's TOMB OF DRACULA series is good too, but was never one of my favorites. My favorite story of the run was a two-issue story guest scripted by Gardner Fox, in issues 4 and 5, where the Van Helsings travel through an enchanted mirror into the past, to try and prevent Dracula from rising to power.

There was a great parody of Marv Wolfman's departure from the Dracula books and Marvel, in HOWARD THE DUCK magazine # 5, by Mantlo, Golden and McCleod.

And who couldn't love VAMPIRELLA ?

There are also some great new illustrated versions of CONAN, SOLOMON KANE and other Robert E. Howard books, by artist Gary Gianni, through Dark Horse. They look great, but I haven't been eager to purchase them because they're priced rather high (in the $60.00 to $100.00 range). I see them release a new one every few months, advertised in the Bud Plant catalog.

#184401 - Wed Jul 16 2003 10:56 AM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics
Pig Iran
Offline Kisser Of John Byrne Ass

Registered: Sat Feb 10 2001
Posts: 16240
Loc: Salma Hayek's Heaving Bosom
Yeah, I'm kinda a Shanna/ Kazar nut..I have most appearances except the Waid/kubert series as I really dislike the kubert kids' art. I have almost complet collections of the first 3 kazr series/the shanna series/about half of the savage tales magazines. and the issue of rampaging hulk you described...I love that Shanna story it has some absolutely beautiful DeZuniga art.....

I also have a very nice Brent Anderson Kazar portfolio that has some absolutley amazing art plates.

#184402 - Thu Jul 17 2003 12:21 AM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics (portfolios)
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 21566
Loc: A glorious bold new America

I've seen the Brent Anderson KAZAR portfolio you refer to. It is beautiful stuff.

I really miss the portfolios of the 1974-1983 period, especially the Wrightson, Kaluta and Smith stuff, and the Neal Adams portfolios that reprint the book covers he did for the Edgar Rice Burroughs Tarzan books.
Some other great portfolios:
  • FRANKENSTEIN (Wrightson, 1977)
    FRANKENSTEIN II (Wrightson, 1978)
    FRANKENSTEIN III (Wrightson, 1980, the best of the three, I think)
    DRAGONS (Lela Dowling, 1982), and other Dowling works
    REPENT HARLEQUIN, SAID THE TICKTOCKMAN (Steranko, and Ellison, 1978)
    APPARITIONS (Wrightson, 1979)
    DR STRANGE (Golden, 1982)
    BATMAN (Marshall Rogers, 1980)
    MOON KNIGHT (Sienkiewicz, 1982)
    DREADSTAR (Starlin, 1981)
    HULK and X-MEN portfolios (Fastner, Larsen, 1981)
    NEAL ADAMS PORTFOLIO (Sets A, B, and C, 1979-1981)
    STARSLAYER (Grell, 1981)
    Roger Dean Portfolio (1980)
    Art of Jim Fitzpatrick portfolio (I and II, 1980 and 1981)
    The many posters and portfolios of Frazetta's Conan covers and other Frazetta work.

And many others.

  • .

    "Valeria", from The Robert E. Howard portfolio, (1975), by Barry Windsor-Smith. One of five plates, the others being Bran Mak Morn, Conan, Thoth Amon, and Solomon Kane.

And these stand-alone limited edition portfolios arguably evolved out of artist portfolio sections and articles on R.E.Howard and other pulp fantasy authors that ran in SAVAGE TALES, SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN, and other similar marvel magazines after.
EPIC ILLUSTRATED also ran a lot of stuff on available portfolios, and I think the movement died with EPIC's cancellation, in early 1986.

  • "The Last Atlantean" by Barry Windsor-Smith, 1981, a limited edition print, that was also used as the cover for EPIC ILLUSTRATED # 7, in 1981. The EPIC issue also contains a Smith interview and a lot of other pages of his art reprinted.


I initially didn't like Kazar in most of his early appearances, in the 1960's and 1970's. The character's dialogue was a little too stilted, in a typical 70's Marvel/Roy Thomas pseudo-Shakespearian way. CONAN was the one book where that speech pattern worked for me. And THOR.
My favorite early appearance of Kazar was in X-MEN issue 10, (1964) by Stan Lee with Jack Kirby/Chic Stone art. I have the original, but prefer to re-read it now in the Masterworks reprint of X-MEN 1-10.

But Ka-zar wasn't a fun character for me until Bruce Jones and Brent Anderson basically re-created the character in the 1981 KAZAR series.
The Bruce Jones KAZAR series in 1981 gave the character a much-needed sense of humor, while also taking the series in an Edgar Rice Burroughs adventure-type of direction. With exceptional writing, and some of the best and wildest cliffhangers in comics history each issue. Brent Anderson drew the first 19 issues, but if anything the series got even better in issues 20-27 with Ron Frenz/Armando Gil art.

I was just thinking of the Goodwin/Williamson STAR WARS comic strips and movie adaptations.
And Williamson's FLASH GORDON work is also comics storytelling in the Edgar Rice Burroughs tradition. A lengthy and high quality run.
Much of their STAR WARS stuff has been reprinted in nice trades by Dark Horse.

I especially like the Goodwin/Williamson work, with nicer printing and not serialized (as the adaptations were in the regular STAR WARS comic). The Williamson adaptations are so much more impressive in the offset-printed magazine-size 8" X 11" MARVEL COMICS SUPER SPECIAL issues, adapting EMPIRE STRIKES BACK (issue 16), REVENGE OF THE JEDI (issue 27)
And the 7" X 10" comic-size BLADERUNER adaptation (issue 22).

#184403 - Thu Jul 17 2003 12:54 AM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics
Offline 100+ posts

Registered: Wed May 21 2003
Posts: 128
Loc: "The Forbidden Zone"...
Originally, CONAN was a character I had no interest in. Somehow, Roy Thomas' work on the character MADE it work for me. The Buscema-Chan art was also generally nice, although the Buscema-Alcala work in SAVAGE SWORD could be downright breathtaking. Also, there were a few issues by Chaykin-Chan that were more inspired & exciting than a lot of the Buscema issues, as John seemed to lose his interest and regain it from time to time.

I believe RED SONJA got me into the genre before I even really got that far into CONAN. And my first exposure was RED SONJA #1-- which I had Frank Thorne sign for me 2 years ago. I feel the Bruce Jones episodes in MARVEL FEATURE (WHY didn't they just start her series in RS #1?) were better-written, but looking back over them, Frank's work DEFINITELY improved over the course of the series.

"His later GHITA series (a somewhat more sexually graphic ceator-owned version of Red Sonja that Thorne later did) is one I sampled but never got around to collecting."

I only picked up 1984 / 1994 sporadically-- which meant Thorne's serialized GHITA was near-incomprehensible, apart from some of the really hot sex scenes. There was so much utter TRASH in those magazines, unfortunately, that Frank's work was often, by a WIDE margin, the best thing there (along with occasional pieces by Esteban Maroto & Peter Hsu). GHITA has been reprinted at LEAST 3 times now-- the most recent time in a SINGLE book!!! This certainly saves any work with "collecting" it. I was finaly able to read the whole thing in its entirety, and it makes SO much more sense taken this way. It's really like sitting through 2 full-length movies back-to-back. Check it out... Ghita Of Alizarr

JOHN CARTER always seemed too dark & depressing for me-- plus the art was never as consistent as it should have been. Dave Cockrum inked Gil Kane in one issue, which looked amazing. Later, Rudy nebres inked Dave Cockrum in a one-issue story was was STUNNING. But most of it I never cared much for.

That SHANNA story in RAMPAGING HULK proved to me that Tony DeZuniga was an artist to be reckoned with, and was WASTING HIS TALENTS by inking (and often mutilating) other's pencils all the time. (INFINITY INC. was merely the WORST example I can think of; on the other hand, SPIDER-WOMAN was a surprisingly GOOD collaboration-- with Tony inking Carmine Infantino!)

Ever notice for a Puritan, SOLOMON KANE kept running into half-naked wenches with even BIGGER bosoms than CONAN kept running into?

I'm currently re-reading my entire VAMPIRELLA series. I'm only missing 5 issues of the Warren run, and because of reprints here and there, I'm only missing ONE episode of her own series-- but it's one with art by Leopold Sanchez, so it's not exactly a high priority. The Archie Goodwin run remains the BEST in the series' history, was collected in one book (FINALLY!!!!!) in 1991, and is being reprinted AGAIN sometime this year. I just WISH those idiots at Harris would reprint the old stories in MAGAZINE-size format, because last night I re-read "Carnival Of The Damned" (the ONLY original episode I don't have in the old mags) and believe me, the story & art really suffers when the art is SHRUNK down to comic-book size.

It was always a toss-up between the 2 mainstays on the art-- Jose Gonzalez, and Gonzalo Mayo. Mayo was less "realistic", but his art was often more spectacular and sexier-- plus he seemed to be able to knock out pages a lot faster, despite all the detail. But you know what?? Time & again I'm reminded-- the guy whose art made me fall in love with Vampi was Tom Sutton-- particularly from VAMPI #8, "Who Serves The Cause Of Chaos?" (the 1st of the "serious" stories) where he really drew her as a very sympathetic character. Warren NEVER reprinted any of Tom's VAMPI episodes!!! At least I have that to thank Harris for...

#184404 - Wed Jul 16 2003 01:09 PM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics
Offline 100+ posts

Registered: Wed May 21 2003
Posts: 128
Loc: "The Forbidden Zone"...
A couple more S&S series come to mind.

DAX THE WARRIOR was in EERIE magazine. The stories are no great shakes, but the art was my introduction to the incredible ESTEBAN MAROTO, who drew the sexiest women I had ever seen at that tender young age. Maroto did a ton of work for Warren, but precious few VAMPI episodes (which I always thought was odd). Among his more recent work has been THE ATLANTIS CHRONICLES, ZATANNA: COME TOGETHER and the tragically unfinished LADY RAWHIDE: OTHER PEOPLE'S BLOOD, which has the sad distinction of being cancelled in mid-story-- TWICE!! (Why don't they just issue a complete graphic novel and be done with it???)

AXA was a newspaper strip-- in more than once sense-- that ran in England, from Enrique Romero. She was a woman in a post-apocalyptic future society who, like the characters in LOGAN'S RUN, leave the paradise of a doned city to travel in the savage wastelands outside. She was based on Bridget Bardot, and tended to be topless in around half the panels. This probably explains why it was never run in any US papers!

Now, here's the furstrating part. Ken Pierce reprinted the entire run of the newspaper strip in a set of 9 books. BUT-- to package them in "prestige format" books, the art was SHRINK to practically postage-stamp size (probably about what most US papers run strips as, these days) so the impact of all that gorgeous art is seriously diminished. Further, the strip was cancelled in mid-story, so Book 9 ends on a cliffhanger.

Eclipse did a brand-new AXA graphic novel-- IN FULL COLOR!!! This was done in "TPB" format (about magazine size) so Romero was really able to shine. But then, Eclipse decided to do a new 3-issue mini-series, in comic-book format. Rather than get around to finishing the story from the newspaper, they went ahead with another new story. BUT-- the mini was cut short 2 issues into the 3. As a result, there remain not one but TWO Axa stories left unfinished!!!!! (Don't you HATE it when that happens?)

#184405 - Thu Jul 17 2003 05:53 PM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics
Offline I'm just sayin'

Registered: Fri Jul 20 2001
Posts: 10539
Loc: Shippensburg,Pennsylvania
Savage Sword in the 80's totally ruled with John Buscema & Ernie Chan's art.The stories were awesome & I was never bored by 'em.The black & white format worked so well with that book.In the early 90's,Alacenta's art on SSOC was very cool too.
#184406 - Fri Nov 07 2003 07:37 PM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material (Grell, book-illustrator influence on 70's creators)
Wonder Boy
Offline brutally Kamphausened

Registered: Wed Sep 12 2001
Posts: 21566
Loc: A glorious bold new America

I was a huge fan of Mike Grell's THE WARLORD for DC, from its beginning in 1975, up until he left the series in 1982.

It's a sword and sorcery offering that DC never would have ventured into, if not for the success of CONAN over at Marvel. In issue 7, one of Warlord's attackers is so obviously drawn to look just like Conan, in the opening scene. It was great to see Conan illustrated by Grell.

the first 12 issues of WARLORD are collected with nicer printing in the WARLORD: THE SAVAGE EMPIRE trade, printed in 1991.

I also really enjoyed Grell's STARSLAYER series for Pacific, from 1981-1983. Grell did the first 6 issues, some of his nicest art.
And the STARSLAYER series was continued and made a name for newcomers John Ostrander and Tim Truman, in a long run after that with First Comics (that, and their GRIMJACK run as well).

There were a number of Conan-inspired characters at DC in the late 70's, including
  • Grell's WARLORD
  • CLAW (drawn by Ernie Chan, under the name Ernie Chua)
  • STALKER (by Ditko)
  • and a nicely illustrated BEOWULF series by Ricardo Villamonte

    and for Seaboard Atlas
  • IRON JAW by Pablo Marcos( another SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN artist)
  • WULF by Larry Hama, who years later also worked on SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN.

And of course, ARAK, in 1981, when Roy Thomas left editing/writing the Conan line for Marvel, and came to DC. My favorite Arak story was the preview that appeared in WARLORD 48, and ARAK 1 and 2.

WARLORD in 1981-1984 was the launch point for a number of fantasy series from DC, such as ARION and BARREN EARTH, which began as backup features in WARLORD.
And I think the success of these launches opened the field at DC for other fantasy series, such as AMETHYST.

Among many others.

I recall the short-lived Seaboard Atlas line of comics had quite a few Conan-type books and other pulp/adventure material as well in 1975, by many of the same talents, by quite a few up-and-comers, such as Howard Chaykin and Pat Broderick.
And Pablo Marcos who did IRON JAW (which is still basically Conan), with some nice covers and inks by Neal Adams on a few issues.

But the heart and soul of fantasy in comics (as well as the "comic book Fine Art" movement, that inspired so many beautiful posters and prints) was CONAN, and especially after 1974, SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN. You can see this in the advertising throughout this period in SAVAGE SWORD, for the various Barry Smith and Tim Conrad portfolios and prints, and for Bud Plant Comic Art, and many others who produced incredible work.

For me, the culmination of this movement was EPIC ILLUSTRATED and the Marvel Graphic Novel line, and then the first creator-owned series from Pacific Comics, and Eclipse. And when these died, the movement died. It began to fade around 1985-1986, and by 1990 the level of sophistication of comic art declined sharply, to a level from which it has not since aspired to rise from.

But I'm still awed at the work from that era, roughly 1970-1985, particularly the work of Adams, Steranko, Wrightson, Smith, Kaluta, Jeff Jones, Corben, Alcala, Nebres, Redondo, Nino, Brunner, Ploog, Golden, Rogers, Fastner/Larson, Macklin, Conrad, Russell, Starlin, Gulacy, Chaykin, Day, Steacy, Bolton, Vess, Scott Hampton, Dowling, Fitzpatrick, Suydam, Sienkiewicz, Chris Miller, Chastain, Gould, Maitz, Pound, Jusko, Frazetta, Roblin, Rivoche, and many lesser-known talents.

I think that's what's missing from the comics industry now, the loss of influence from a greater tradition of illustration. A drift away from portfolios, and from the influence of book illustration that Wrightson, Smith, Kaluta and others brought to comics in the 70's era.
An influence of greater tradition that began with CONAN, SAVAGE TALES, and especially SAVAGE SWORD OF CONAN, and an influence that apparently died with the cancellation of these titles.

That's about the point where the influence turned away from the tradition of Frazetta, Arthur Rackham, Maxfield Parrish, Howard Pyle, Joseph Clement Coll and Franklin Booth.
And took a sharp turn toward the derivative recycled fanboy "totally cool" look of Jim Lee, Rob Liefeld, Todd McFarlane and the like. (Even Lee, who I somewhat like, is a poor man's Arthur Adams).

#184407 - Sat Nov 08 2003 03:18 PM Re: CONAN and other Robert E. Howard material in comics
First Amongst Daves
Offline Banned from the DCMBs since 2002.

Registered: Wed Jan 23 2002
Posts: 15171
I was actually going to mention Arak, Son of Thunder. It was surprisingly sophisticated, too. Thomas put some research into the title. I didn't read many issues, though.

Frank Franzetta's stuff always caught my eye (those painted covers can get pretty awesome) but I never read any of it.

On the pulp front, Dave, if you like LOEG, you might also like Planetary, which has some nice pulp tributes scattered throughout the series (most notably the recent Doc Savage tribute). Tom Strong is cut from the same cloth, too.

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