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Groo Special (1984) - #1
"Groo the Wanderer Special"
Eclipse Books

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Mark Evanier

Sergio AragonÚs

Sergio AragonÚs

Tom Luth

Stan Sakai

Cover Artist(s):
Sergio AragonÚs

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Cover Date: October 1984
Cover Price: US $ 2.00

Issue Tagline: None.

Format: Color; Standard Comic Issue

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This special contains two previously unpublished stories and a reprint of the 4-page Groo story from Destroyer Duck 1.

The Swords of Groo

The Sage and Groo are eating at an inn with some friends when someone asks about Groo's swords. To save us all from Groo's attempt at storytelling, the Sage tells the tale of how Groo got his swords.

We learn that Groo was once in the army of King Fuchikaka, a brave conqueror who is defeating the army of the cowardly King Sakisama, who stays far away from battle. Sakisama's army is single-handedly rescued in battle, however, by Groo, who mistakenly gives the order to retreat instead of repeat just when his army is winning. Contrary to what one may think, it is almost never a good idea to have Groo in your army.

Despite their good fortune of having Groo on the other side of the battle, Sakisama's forces still have two problems. The first is that they have captured Groo instead of killing him. The second is that Sakisama is still a coward, and morale is very poor. A royal aide notices that Groo looks similar to Sakisama and comes up with a plan: dress Groo in Sakisama's clothing and have him lead the army into battle. Along with the clothes Groo receives his famous swords, formerly Sakisama's; by legend, they were forged by the gods themselves. After some training killing his former army mates, Groo is a master of the new swords.

Groo leads Sakisama's army to several victories, until he runs into Taranto, who reminds him of his loyalty to Fuchikaka. Agreeing with Taranto, Groo orders his army to surrender - but accidentally reveals that he is Groo, not Sakisama, in the process. Therefore, the army ignores him and attacks anyway. Groo flees, now a man without an army - but with two excellent swords.

The Music of Murkos

This story begins with an intro page in which Mark Evanier asks Sergio Aragones if he did any Groo stories before the first publication. Sergio reveals he has a Groo story from 1977, which follows.

Groo runs into some refugees in the night. One of them tells him that they are abandoning their village because it is being terrorized by "the Kolas". Groo takes this as an opportunity to secure free lodgings and goes the way that they are coming. On the way to the village, Groo is attacked by a warrior, whom he quickly slays. Groo finds a bed to rest in, but his sleep is interrupted by a beautiful woman. She tells him that she is waiting for a champion called Voldak. Displaying an uncommon amount of sense for Groo, Groo realizes that this is the man he has just killed and has the presence of mind to tell her that he is dead without mentioning why. She makes Groo her new champion and they set off the next morning.

Groo and the woman wander through the forest, encountering a non-threatening monster along the way. On the mountain route of Murkos, they finally encounter a Kola - it is a tiny hairless ape that Groo mistakes for harmless. It calls for reinfocements and they quickly overwhelm Groo. Groo cons his way out of capture by convincing the king of the Kolas that he has brought them the woman as a gift, and the King shows him that they collect beautiful maidens to sing in a terrible-sounding chorus - the Kolas greatly enjoy "The Music of Murkos". Groo escapes, but his conscience makes him want to rescue the women. Groo comes up with a plan.

As Groo gathers the materials for his plan, the story is interrputed by another Sergio-and-Mark page that explains that the story was never finished and that they have to finish it now. The story resumes with Groo constructing primitive musical instruments. He presents them to the Kolas with the thought that they will free the women in their chorus, but the Kolas instead give the instruments to the women and force them to play. Realizing his plan has failed, Groo goes for his swords...

Additional Material

Following "The Music of Murkos" are a few pages of paper dolls - Groo, the Sage, Taranto, Chakaal, Sergio, The Witch of Kaan, and assorted soldiers and villagers. Then there is a reprint of the Destroyer Duck 1 story.

Destroyer Duck (1982) #1

Reprinted/Collected in:
The Groo Chronicles (1989) HC
The Groo Chronicles (1989) #4
The Groo Chronicles (1989) #5
The Groo Chronicles (1989) #6

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