Published: November 1st, 2006
Written by: Peter David, Luke Lieberman
Art by: Will Conrad
Based on: characters by Robert E. Howard, Roy Thomas, Barry Windsor-Smith
Dynamite Entertainment, 129 Pages
Since both Red Sonja and Conan have had new comics series start over the last few months, I’ve been in a barbarian kind of mood. I especially love the characters that have come from or evolved out of the original stories of Robert E. Howard.
While the comic book version of Red Sonja was created by Roy Thomas and Barry Windsor-Smith, she is partially based on Howard’s Red Sonya of Rogatino and has often times fought alongside Howard’s most famous hero, Conan the Barbarian.
In this story, we don’t see Red Sonja alongside Conan but we do get to see her face off with one of Conan’s villains, Thulsa Doom. And what I love about this version of Doom, is that he sometimes takes on the appearance of the James Earl Jones version of the character from the 1982 Conan movie but also disguises himself as a tall, brutish man. Yes, he also still transforms into a giant snake.
This story was written by Peter David and Luke Lieberman. David was one of my favorite writers a decade and a half before this when he was working on one of the greatest runs on The Incredible Hulk and also wrote some of my favorite X-Factor stories.
Here, David does a superb job of bringing these characters together in a way that was pretty unique and creative. It’s easy to just make one character good, one character bad and then pit them against each other. David did a solid job of making Doom use his guile to get the upper hand over Sonja when her guard was down.
This is action packed and badass, through and through. The final showdown between Sonja and Doom is pretty satisfying and it leaves things open for Doom to slither back into her life, somewhere down the road.
Will Conrad’s art was enjoyable. I love his style and it fits the narrative tone very well.
I also liked a lot of the covers for this series. It had a lot of variants, which is typical of Dynamite Entertainment, but for the most part, they were all stunning to look at.
Red Sonja Vs. Thulsa Doom is a damn entertaining book for fans of the sword and sorcery genre, especially the fans of Robert E. Howard.
Pairs well with: other Red Sonja comics from Dynamite Entertainment.