My favorite She-Devil’s anniversary is coming up, and Dynamite has one heckuva celebration planned, with an all-star one-shot, Red Sonja: 1973, coming in July!
Dynamite has put together a short anthology for this one shot, with stories from Roy Thomas – the first writer to script Red Sonja’s adventures, Gail Simone, Luke Lieberman, Eric Trautmann, and Cullen Bunn, who’s currently writing another one of my favorite series, Brides of Helheim. So, yeah – I’ll be waiting outside Royal Collectibles in Forest Hills for my copy to hit my pull folder.
Dynamite promises that “Red Sonja #1973 special will feature the red-tressed warrior in battle with monsters, rivals, and ne’er-do-wells, stories retro-tinted to capture the flavor of her classic comics era.” Roy Thomas talks about the changes the She-Devil has seen from her debut until now:
“It was a lucky day when I read a fan-article about Robert E. Howard that mentioned a story in which one of his historical heroes fought alongside a “Russian hell-cat” or whatever precisely the phrase was (her name wasn’t mentioned in the article), so that I obtained a copy of the long out-of-print story from the estate’s literary agent, Glenn Lord, and read it: ‘The Shadow of the Vulture.’ Red Sonya of Rogatine clearly had possibilities as a sometime companion/opponent for Conan in Marvel’s Conan the Barbarian comic, so I changed her name to the (to me) slightly more exotic Red Sonja, thereby making her a somewhat new character and adapted ‘Shadow’ as an issue of Conan. From that time on, she had a life of her own. Barry Windsor-Smith was inspired to do great things with her in the two Conan issues we did together in which she co-starred. Esteban Maroto, over in Spain, couldn’t resist giving her a different look, which came to be called ‘the iron bikini’ after I decided that should be what she wore from then on. John Buscema and Howard Chaykin did a handful of nice stories with her. Frank Thorne came aboard to virtually make her his own. And that was just in the 1970s! I suspect Red Sonja will be around for a long, long time!”
Rare B Variant
Red Sonja #1973 will be solicited in Diamond Comic Distributors’ May Previews catalog, the premiere source of merchandise for the comic book specialty market, for release in July. Comic book fans are encouraged to reserve copies of Red Sonja #1973 with their local comic book retailers. Red Sonja #1973 will also be available for individual customer purchase through digital platforms courtesy of Comixology, Dynamite Digital, iVerse, and Dark Horse Digital.