Friday, August 28, 2015

Comic Review: John Carter, Warlord of Mars #10

After some adventures with John Carter and Dejah Thoris it's now Tars Tarkas and Woola's turn for their own adventure.

Worried about their friends' long absence, Tars and Woola head out to find them, heading into desolate wastes of Barsoom. It isn't too long before they find trouble, namely a pack of hungry banths and a "guardian of the Barsoomian desert" who decides it's time to pass judgment on our heroes. But as we've learned never underestimate a Thark or a Calot devoted to his friend.

With a fun setup of Sola telling the tale as a campfire story to a group of Thark children and some nice twists here and there this is a winning issue courtesy of Ron Marz and Ian Edginton. The biggest plus is how faithful the pair stick to the characters of Tars Tarkas and Woola, a brave noble Thark and a devoted beast, not the wimpy movie version Tars and cutesy puppy Woola. Granted some might have trouble with the "guardian" (it reminds me of those "demons" Tars ran into the later run of the Marvel series) but it's a fun story that's only downside is that it makes you want more. Maybe it's time for a Tars Tarkas solo series?

Helping is the artwork by Ariel Medel, who captures the Tharks and the landscapes vividly. In fact Medel's Tharks are among the best I've seen in the current run of comics, keeping a ferocious appearance without going all "Hulk" like. He also draws some means banths. The backgrounds do fade a little bit but there is a nice balance to the whole piece that makes it a page turner. Fans of John Ford might also get a good chuckle in spread.

Tars Tarkas and Woola fans should pick this up quickly as they will find much here to enjoy. Next time more retro comic reviews, some thoughts on current books I'm reading and more. Until then keep your head and one hand and you too can conquer!

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