Ever since John Carter actually got to Mars in issue four I have thoroughly enjoyed this series. Writer Arvid Nelson has hit upon a very successful formula weaving together action and character development, while, at the same time revealing more and more of Mars’ unique culture. It is Nelson’s ability to mix these three different elements in just the right quantities that make this series a treat to read.
Nelson uses the first element, action, to keep the story moving but not at such a fast pace that he is unable to work in the other two elements. The second element is the character development, the importance of which can not be over stated. Getting to know the characters enables us, the reader, to develop feeling for them. It is these feelings for the characters, whatever they maybe, that gives the events in the story importance to us the readers. When John Carter battles a giant green Martian the reader’s life is not in any danger but the reader still cares out the outcome because they care about John Carter. The final element is the setting, Mars, with its completely non-human culture and history. Sure there are lots of comics, novels, movies, TV shows and even games whose settings are very detailed and extensive. Most of these, however, when you really examine them are very familiar and not very imaginative. Most are just retouched versions of our own society with some gimmick thrown in. The Mars we see in this series seems truly alien.
I know I haven’t given you any information about what happens in this particular issue but that is OK you can read it for yourself. In case you haven’t guessed already I’m recommending that you pick-up the entire Warlord of Mars series. I do have one complaint the artist need to give Dejah Thoris and the other Martian women something more to wear then just pasties. Don’t get me wrong, I like looking at hot women (even if they are just comic characters) as much as the next guy but I believe the overly skimpy outfits give some people the wrong idea about this series. I know the skimpy outfits are in keeping with the original Edgar Rice Burroughs’ stories. However, if the skimpy female attire is giving anyone the false impression that this is just a T and A comic it is doing a disservice to the series. Warlord of Mares is so much more then a T and A series I hate to see anyone turned off before they get the chance to realize just how good this series is. If giving Dejah Thoris and the other female characters a little more to wear can make this series more acceptable to a wider audience then isn’t that a good thing? Besides if you stick Dejah Thoris in a bikini wouldn’t she still be just as hot?