Sunday, April 5, 2009
by ishtar's furry dugs and crom's flaming member!
i used to read the savage sword of conan voraciously in the eighties. every time my mother would drag me to the grocery store, long experience had taught me that complaining she never did her goddamn grocery shopping while i was at school and didn't have to come with her and be bored never seemed to do any good; and i had already learnt that, so i would instead look forward to escaping her altogether and make a beeline for the magazine rack.
marvel comics has consistently let me down with almost everything they have done (to death) except for this comic. i've been reading my way through all 165 issues (i'm somewhere near seventy), having gotten access to them through another comic book fiend not unlike myself, who also grows faint at the sweeping displays of crosshatching and penned scrumtrilesence.
the whole reason i draw the way i draw right now is probably due to this comic. the displays of anatomy are amazing (although the women look largely the same, of course), but the backgrounds, the fetishy dungeony settings, and the glorious lack of color pretty much make me chew on my own rapidograph in delight. it's like reading a series of engravings.
i used to sit in class and try to draw conan; it's pretty much where i learnt anatomy. somewhere i have a notebook full of anatomically overgrown guys that are wearing fur or chain-maille grippies and big gauntlets, and somewhere in the middle of the notebook those guys change to really butch, half-naked amazonian women in bits of fur and coin mail, not unlike red sonja, but probably more able to kick sonja's ass. never liked her as much; i always thought, why search for a man to best you in combat, and thus win your ass as well as your hand when there are so many hot slave girls running around in the fictitious hybornean age? conan would just grab the nearest--or most in peril-- one and by the time he scaled the wall outside the evil sorcerer's castle with the girl on his shoulder, she'd be in heat for him. i am sure the same could have worked for sonja. perhaps she wouldn't have been so constantly pissed off had she had a few slave girls to work that tension out on.
then again, you never knew when a slave girl was going to turn into a hideous yeti or something, either. or attract one.