Kull de Sac

Kull #2

The second issue of this adaptation of the adventures of Robert E. Howard’s classic barbarian king is probably the least action-packed sword-and-sorcery story you’ll ever see.

Kull has cemented his place as king of Valusia and now spends his days dealing in politics and diplomacy, holding audience with and receiving gifts from noblemen seeking favors. He receives an emissary from the Picts, his most despised enemies, who asks him to meet alone with their chieftan. Kull accepts the invitation, trusting that the Picts value their close relations with Valusia more than they may hate the Atlantean king. The chieftan proves to be a cunning but trustworthy man, and he warns Kull to watch out for the treachery of the Cult of the Great Serpent. But will the Conqueror have time to guard against betrayal when the shapeshifting Serpent People are already moving against him?

Verdict: Thumbs up. The fantasy-level politicking is nicely done, and I’m enjoying Kull’s characterization as a hotheaded warrior who still has enough cunning to know when to let diplomacy win the day. I do wish there’d been a bit more swordplay — what’s the point of Kull the Conqueror if he’s not slicing and dicing monsters and wizards?

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