Friday, March 7, 2014

Comic Review: Warlord of Mars #34

This weekend's comic reviews bring two stories of Earthmen on strange worlds. Here's the original fighting for his loved ones and his own life.

With their son captured, John Carter and Dejah Thoris luckily find refuge with the First Born, where they discover the truth about the fake Tardors Mors: he's actually the Orovar Xerius who used a seed from the Tree of Life to gain psychic powers to mutate into anyone on Barsoom. With some help from Xodar Carter learns how to destroy him but first must get back in Helium and the Spire from which Xerius emerged. And as we know John Carter doesn't back down.

With enough twists and turns, offbeat ideas and a unique approach to the story you got to give this issue credit, it's an engrossing affair. While short on action, writer Arvid Nelson manages to ratchet up the tension and build the drama through dialogue and character that it makes this reader inpatient to see how it ends. While it does play with ERB's established lore more than usual it's still manages to capture some of the master's magic and offers up enough unique action to make the reader turn the page.

For the artwork Rafael Lanhaellas takes over and there is some changes-suddenly Dejah is more dressed (if still skimpily attired) while some panels strike me as odd (Xodar in some looks like a scheming villain, not a friend) but on the whole he manages to at least keep the art work nice and well designed, especially a plus considering how this issue is more about talking and less about sword fighting or the usual derring do.

As we head towards the end this issue does a commendable job setting up the finale and giving John Carter of Mars fans a good fun adventure. Enjoy and I'll be back tomorrow with that other tale of strangers on distant worlds.

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