Writer: Jim Zub
Art: Ig Guara, Luca Pizzari, Stephen Segovia, Frank D’Armata, Vanesa R Del Rey, Juan Francois Beaulieu, VC’s Travis Lanham, and Carlos Pacheco
Release Date: January 22nd, 2020
At last, Dark Agnes, Solomon Kane, and Moon Knight join Conan in the Hyborian Age for the final showdown between Set, the Wyrm, and Khonshu! James Allison brought them together, but will Khonshu tear them apart? Let’s dive into the thrilling conclusion of CONAN SERPENT WAR #4 by Jim Zub to see what answers we can dig up as well as what ramifications on the future this battle will unfold.
Readers, this was an incredibly tough series to review. Let me state it this way: many (many) years ago I went to watch the movie FROM DUSK TO DAWN. Now, at this time in movie history, we didn’t really have internet spoilers, online reviews, and media outlets to share secrets and info about movies as we do now. Point is: all we had was commercials and ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY! Well, this reviewer had no idea what this movie was about and saw no previews before entering the movie. This was the time in movie history where we could just show up and watch a movie. Well, to my chagrin, I was blown out of my seat when I found out this movie (spoilers) had $&@$ vampires in it! At the time, this was the coolest movie I have ever seen from the sheer shock and spin that knocked my socks off!
So, let’s flash forward to now. Why do I bring this up? Well, like FROM DUSK TO DAWN, I had no idea what this issue would be about other than Conan, which it was named after. So, finding out after reading that Moon Knight and some other characters would be involved in the story was a pleasant surprise. Furthermore, wild twists and entering into a comic blind can be an amazing thing. Sometimes, far out, otherworldly, and utter craziness makes for a remarkable adventure, like FROM DUSK TO DAWN did for this reader. However, after reading this series and the final issue, I couldn’t tell you what happened, why it happened, what exactly the big reveal was supposed to be, how our heroes succeeded, and how I was supposed to feel as the story ended. In the last issue, the big reveal was that Wyrm was the real villain all this time and Set, who they’ve been trying to kill actually wasn’t. The reveal in FROM DUSK TO DAWN was not only epic but it made sense and connected to the plot and background of the story. The difference in CONAN SERPENT WAR; Jim Zub made the twist and involved two beings that we know very little about. There was no care in this reveal. Readers knew nothing about Set or Wyrm for that matter so the shock was gone and the story lacked any merit, weight, or purpose.
In this issue, Zub tries to piece everything together but absolutely fails to hit the mark. The twist was meaningless without feeling connected to either supernatural being. Plus, the utter confusion leading up to which godlike being was which, added extra confusing layers that were unnecessary to the story. Furthermore, the end battle involving all the heroes made no sense and frankly took place almost all off-panel. The build-up for the entire series involved and AMAZING splash page of Wyrm by Ig Guara, Moon Knight doing something with a piece of the moon, and then multiple illustrations involving the faces of our heroes over dialogue. Tada … the battle is done and everyone is back to their own time like nothing happened. So, what was the point of the series?
Readers, this story was over-complex, utterly confusing, and lacked any connection other than the character choices, which is why I personally dove into the series. I haven’t read Moon Knight for the longest time. Plus, this reviewer absolutely loves Conan right now. Point is: I picked this series up to see these two characters work together only to discover that they hardly see each other at all while given little explanation as to any of the rules and regulations within the issue, as well as how any of the pieces of the story fit together. Jim Zub is an extremely talented writer who has written so many amazing things. However, I left this issue scratching my head saying… what was the point?
Again, what was the point of this series? Absolutely nothing was accomplished and the status quo is basically back to normal as the series ends. All that was gained from this series was a means to get heroes together who normally would never meet. If that’s your thing, then this series and issue are totally up your alley. However, if you’re looking for a story that makes sense, has a purpose, and strategically incorporates an eclectic group of heroes across time in a way that means something, this series simply isn’t for you. Maybe if it was six issues instead of four Zub could have ironed out more of the details and better explained how everything pieces together? But as of right now, I would not recommend this series to anyone, including Moon Knight fans salivating simply to see him in a comic again.