Speaking of Conan, I had a thought while thinking.
Here's my Conan: He is a muscled man, beardless and tan. He is fair and respects his word. He will treat with you with respect as long as you honor your own word. He will gut you otherwise and not lose a wink of sleep. He loves the ladies and the wine and the adventure. Every day is a new day that should lead to some cash, which leads to some wine and women. Conan doesn't wear a lot of armor and doesn't indulge in speeches.
My Conan is based mostly on Savage Sword comics and the 1982 movie with a smattering of Robert E. Howard. This is my Conan.
People will argue that this is not an accurate portrait of the Cimmerian. Only the image of Conan presented in REH's writings are true, everything else is false. And I get it. If you want to be an originalist to the works of a dead man, I get it.
But let's be honest. REH wrote maybe 21 Conan stories, and most of them are really cool. But since his death there have been many more stories written, many novels, some movies, cartoons, RPGs, and a metric FUCKTON of comic books. One could inundate oneself with Conan material and be a Conan fanatic without ever reading Robert E. Howard.
This is upsetting to originalists, but it's the god damn truth. If you spent your youth reading Conan comics and never read a single Howard story you are still a Conan fan and you still have Conan in your blood, by Crom. Don't let the dogs tell you otherwise!
But of course by all means you should read Howard. Most of those stories are pretty good shit. The longer ones are not my cup of tea, but worth a look.