The Co­nan comic time­line

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Some of the bar­bar­ian’s high­lights, be­gin­ning with his pulp days right through to the 21st cen­tury slayer


Texan au­thor Robert E Howard’s first Co­nan story, The Phoenix on the Sword, ap­pears in the De­cem­ber 1932 is­sue of pulp mag­a­zine Weird Tales with cover art by J Allen St John.


Weird Tales car­ried its last Robert E Howard story – Red Nails – in July, a month af­ter the au­thor’s sui­cide in Cross Plains, Texas. This time the cover was painted by Mar­garet Brundage.


The very first rep­re­sen­ta­tion of Co­nan in a comic book was done in Mex­ico and en­ti­tled La reina de la Costa Ne­gra – an adap­ta­tion of Robert E Howard’s The Queen of the Black Coast.


With art by Barry Smith, and writ­ten by Roy Thomas, Marvel re­leased is­sue one of Co­nan the Bar­bar­ian. Barry pen­cilled the comic for two years, fol­lowed by John Buscema.


Marvel’s early-70s burst of Co­nan con­tin­ued with Sav­age Tales, which fre­quently fea­tured the Cim­me­rian. Is­sue one’s bru­tal cover was painted by John Buscmena.


Marvel’s first ren­di­tion of Red Sonja ap­peared in is­sue 23 of Co­nan the Bar­bar­ian. Gil Kane drew the cover, and Barry Smith the in­ter­nal art­work. The spin-off char­ac­ter is still go­ing.


Marvel’s Sav­age Sword of Co­nan ar­rived with a cover by Boris Vallejo, and five black and white in­ter­nal sto­ries with art by John Buscema, Barry Smith, Gil Kane and oth­ers.


Run­ning along­side Sav­age Sword and Co­nan the Bar­bar­ian, Marvel in­tro­duced King Co­nan, writ­ten by Roy To­mas and drawn by John Buscema. It ran un­til 1989.


Marvel tied in with the Arnold Sch­warzeneg­ger film, Co­nan the Bar­bar­ian, with a two-is­sue movie spe­cial for new fans. The cover of the first is­sue mim­icked the film’s poster art.


Af­ter clos­ing Co­nan the Bar­bar­ian and Sav­age Sword of Co­nan, Marvel ex­per­i­mented. The short-lived Co­nan car­ried this Broth­ers Hilde­brandt cover on is­sue six.


Eight years af­ter Co­nan’s Marvel run ceased, Dark Horse picked up the of­fi­cial li­cence from Robert E Howard’s es­tate and Cary Nord pen­cilled is­sue 0 of Co­nan, which won an Eis­ner.


With Tomás Giorello draw­ing the art, Dark Horse be­gan Co­nan the Cim­me­rian which would run for 26 is­sues. Next came Co­nan the Bar­bar­ian, Co­nan the Avenger and King Co­nan.

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