Book of Doom: The Warlord #1

So this was a disappointment. I realize Mike Grell and his creation have a loyal following, but I’m hard pressed to understand why from this first issue. From the melodramatic dialogue to the silly situations (“We found this recently deceased dinosaur in a cave, so we chopped off its giant head and brought it to you, but going back will be impossible because of how tightly the government monitors travel in and out”) to the implied sex with a cat, I found nothing at all that gives me any reason why I would want to pick up issue #2. Simple as that.

Maybe advance knowledge of what The Warlord and the world in which it exists would’ve helped. But I kind of picked the first issue in the series thinking it would be a good jumping-on point for those of us with no familiarity.

Doom DeLuise read my copy at McDonald’s. He started cracking up reading the first narration box. We ended up exchanging dramatic readings of the narration to each other. My favorite was the groaner monologue from the pilot in the Blackbird. This wasn’t for me.

The only other member of the posse to join in this week was Doominator, bless the poor sap’s heart. Here’s what he had to say:

The only thing I can think after reading Warrior #1 is that the book was too little of a story. This is not to say there wasn’t a story, but more that the story wasn’t enough to intrigue me. The bits we’re given are obviously to catch us up to speed, but not necessarily to intrigue us enough to move on.

My thoughts, more succinctly: A live dinosaur? Holy crap! That’s intriguing! I love dinosaurs! So let’s step into this stargate thing that will let us see the dinosaurs and … oh, there’s an astronaut flying a military jet plane in space. I didn’t know a Blackbird could fly in space outside of X-Men. Well, let’s see where this takes us, and … huh, guy in a loin cloth wrapping up sexing a cat. Cat-lady. Cat something. And then a bird attacks and … huh, something pierced an armor.

See? That’s just a tad confusing. The problem is what they try to fit in – there are three separate threads there, and the way they’re interwoven seems to let you down when you’ve started to get interested. By jumping the narrative into these three parts, you’ve made each ending as anti-climatic as the last. The middle is the origin story to catch us up to speed – but we’re going from real world Tibet with dinosaurs to an astronaut to Warrior sexing a cat woman, and it makes the last part not seem as important.

Perhaps the complaint lies in there being too much story. In today’s comic market, stand alone doesn’t exist. Each issue is leading to an
arch, each arc tagging on to the last. They are tailored for the trade paperback market, where they can hit the widest diversity of audience
by being able to be at a Borders or Barnes & Noble alongside your local comic shop where the employees know you by name. It’s nice to
get such a cinematic scope in the finished arc, but it makes it harder to enjoy the individual issues. The Astonishing X-Men syndrome, if you

I want to enjoy Warrior – the individual parts are certainly more competent than a lot of books out there. But it’s very hard to do this when there’s no impetus to do so by just picking up the issues. Having sampled this, I’m sure I’d seek it out more at my library than a comic
shop – what if this arc is all about the anti-climactic? Will we be stuck in cycles of intrigue and let-down?

I wish this series the best, but I’m waiting for the trade.