Sunday, December 23, 2012


I got my first taste of graphic novels in 2012 and my introduction was in the form of the Fables series by Bill Willingham and many, many talented artists.  Since my foray has been limited to this series, I can't say it was a better or worse entry into the genre but it sure was pretty close to perfect. 

As the series starts most of our favorite fairy tale characters have been forced out of their magic kingdoms by an evil and unknown enemy that has brutally conquered the homelands and keeps them under a totalitarian rule.  The characters that have escaped are living in New York - the more human like characters sharing a vast apartment building in the city and the less human like characters living on "the farm" in the countryside.  From here launches a 1000 tales of magical fables adjusting to the modern world, of the fight to free the homeland and tackle other menaces that threaten.  There's action, adventure, romance, mystery, twists on old archetypal characters, and a lot of stunning artwork.  

I've mostly read the volumes which combine the individual comics into larger collections.  There are 18 of these thus far and I've read through volume 16.  Each volume can be read in one sitting.  Being new to graphic novels I was nervous that they would be difficult to physically follow  - that it would be hard to know where to look on the page or read dialogue in the correct order.  I didn't have a problem. I have recently picked up the first volume of Sandman and I have had a little more difficulty with following it which leads me to think that Fables is a really good place to start for someone not used to reading comics.  

Some of my favorite things about the series thus far include Bigby and Snow White, the evolution of Prince Charming, Frau Totenkinder, Little Boy Blue, the 1001 Nights collection, seeing old stories in a new light, the secret life of Cinderella.  I think my favorite volumes were the early ones (maybe 1-5).  

Are you a graphic novel fan?  What are your favorite series and why?  Are you a fan of fairy tales? What's your favorite use of fairy tales in modern literature or media?  

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