According to Deadline, Amazon are putting together a Conan TV series. That’s Conan the Barbarian, aka Conan the Cimmerian, aka Arnie in the good movies, Jason Momoa in the bad one, and Ralf Moller in the unspeakable live action TV series from the mid ’90s.
This new comes in the wake of the announcement that they’re also working on a Lord of the Rings series. The Conan stories, written by Texan pulp machine Robert E. Howard back in the early 1930s and continued by a veritable legion of scribes in the years since, are fantasy of course, but of a very different stripe than Tolkien’s pastoral and mythical tales of hobbits and elves. More limbs get hacked off, for one thing. Wizards are more likely to sacrifice virgins to Set than come to your rescue on the dawn of the third day, for another.
Oh, this is gonna be good…
The creative team includes Colony‘s Ryan Condal, Game of Thrones director Miguel Sapochnik, and executive producer Warren Littlefield, whose work includes Fargo and The Handmaid’s Tale, with Condal creating (well, adapting) and writing. They’re apparently going back to the mightily thewed anti-hero’s pulp roots, too. According to Deadline, “Conan retells the classic character’s story via a return to his literary origins. Driven out of his tribal homelands, Conan wanders the mysterious and treacherous world of civilization where he searches for purpose in a place that rejects him as a mindless savage.”
That’s great news. We could sing the praises of John Milius’ 1982 film Conan the Barbarian ’til the Valkyries come for us, but not even it got Conan quite right. If this version manages to capture the flavour of Howard’s original tales (basically mass slaughter, eldritch horrors, high adventure, and existential brooding), it’ll be incredible.
It’s a long ways off, of course, but we have three suggestions.
- Frazetta the hell out of everything.
- See what Momoa’s up to. He was a great Conan in a terrible Conan film. With the right material, he could nail it.
- Basil Poledouris (RIP) or GTFO.