Saturday, June 27, 2015

Retro Comics: John Carter, Warlord of Mars #25

As the cover says, He's Back! And playing a game of "Hide-'n'-Seek" with the Guild of Assassins!

Still using his guerrilla tactics on Tal Modrin and his killers, John Carter and Tars Tarkas manage to whittle them down to size, eventually bringing Carter and Mordrin together in a duel to the death. Meanwhile Helium's royal family grows concerned about Carter and Dejah Thoris' long absence unaware of the planned assault by traitorous Guild members. Can Carter save them in time? Will Dejah become ulsio food? And why does Mors Kojak have a mohawk?

After a short break, the series comes back with a surprisingly subtle pace as Chris Claremont and company have Carter play cat and mouse with the Guild, creating several suspense set pieces and some rousing action, especially in the duel between the two master swordsmen. The growing tension of waiting for the assault on Helium is also well handled and makes the reader anxious for the next issue, always a sign of a successful story being well told.

One interesting note is the presence of both Tardors Mors and Mors Kojak's wives in the story, mainly due to their complete absence in the original novels. In fact outside of vague mentions in A Princess of Mars neither character make an appearance in any of the novels so their appearance here is unique in helping establish the family history.

As usual strong art for the series from Vosburg and Villamonte (as they are listed on the first page).

With three more issues to go we're about done with Marvel's adventures with John Carter and company. Next time prepare for "Night of the Long Knives!" and until then Kaor!

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