The Spider King #1 Review

Posted March 12, 2018 by Cameron McFarland in Comic Books

Written By: Josh Vann

Art By: Simone D’Armini

Published By: IDW

Barbarians fighting can be fun. It’s a simple, perhaps too basic, guilty pleasure to see axes and swords swinging through the air and hammers destroying skulls. The challenge in writing a compelling story of strong men fighting for no reason is that it has been done an awful lot. The themes are always revenge or honor, or often just pure rage and barbarism for the sake of it. Tough-sounding family names clash in an effort to prove that the gods have chosen their name as most-tough-name of the land!

If you pass on all the tropes and need something more special or new to enjoy a story, then maybe The Spider King is the kind of book you’ve been waiting for. The fun of Spider King comes not from the muscular men hitting each other, but the muscular men hitting each other right when aliens invade from outer space. I read a brief synopsis of the series and imagined this to be something akin to Starbarians, which is a favorite He-Man style parody. Quite the contrary, Spider King takes a much more gritty and serious approach to the sci-fi mashup.

This first issue starts off a bit slow, handing readers a lot of names and very dark artwork to chew on. However, the use of color to help guide your eyes through the ink-heavy presentation is very appreciated and a lot of the characters start to become easy to recognize as you get used to the style being applied.

The bottom line is Spider King stands to keep me entertained for some time to come, but this #1 issue does drag a bit. I’m uncertain if future releases will pick up the pace or if each installment will be a slow build toward a greater conflict. But, I just love barbarians fighting space monsters and I can’t knock it too much for being an entertaining first look at this new world.

The Spider King #1


The Spider King #1


Final Score

8.0 /10


  • Fun premise
  • Fun violence


  • Slow start

About the Author

Cameron McFarland

Cameron loves cartoons and bad movies almost as much as bad cartoon movies. He is also the world's best spaghetti-eater, so don't bring it up around him or he won't shut up about it. Author and Artist for world-reviled World of Warcraft fancomic,