Review: ‘Barbaric’ #2 Serves Up Swords, Sorceries And Backstories

by Olly MacNamee


‘Barbaric’ #2 serves up a another dose of irreverent sword, sorcery by Michael Moreci and Nathan Gooden. We learn all about Soren the necromancer from last issue and return to the deathly abbey she once called home.


Barbaric #2 is another fun, oversized issue, with plenty of story to fit into it too. Not only do we get the tragic backstory on necromancer and straight-woman to Owen’s funny man barbarian, Soren, but we get to visit thievery icy abbey that was once her home. And, as this is a sword and sorcery series, albeit it a funny book too, there’s plenty of swords and sorcery to behold. And axing. 

Owen is cast in the same mould as Conan the Barbarian, but more reluctant to help others. In fact if it wasn’t for the curse to do the right thing, one expects he’d be happy to while away his time in the pub we find him and Soren in at the Strat of this issue. That, or causing berserker mayhem. After all, helping people out isn’t too “barbarian” as he himself recognises. 

In his scripting of this issue Michael Moreci again shows his love and knowledge of the genre while Nathan Gooden’s artwork, coloured by Addison Duke, is a great fit for this series. Gooden’s art has a flow to it which adds a certain energy to each page and Addison’s colours really bring the various moments of magic to life appropriately luridly too. Some of the Karger panels really stand out with a hint of both Tony Harris circa his Starman run with the slightest of design aesthetics at time that remind mw of Alphonse Mucha. It’s a very stylish and stylised book that’s for sure. Meanwhile, letterer Jim Campbell adds the cherry to the top of the cake with scrolling narrative boxes and uneven speech balloons to solidify the fantasy genre heritage of this series.

A strong second issue that is a great mix of classic fantasy narrative and archetypes with subtle humour and even the odd moment of satire when Soren calls out Owen for stereotyping sorcerers such as herself. A beautiful looking book with some brilliant barbarism too. And out now from Vault Comics.

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