Monday, June 12, 2017

On the Coffee Table: Storybook Love

Title: Fables, Vol. 3: Storybook Love
Writer: Bill Willingham
Artist: Mark Buckingham
via Amazon
In the excellent Fables comic book series, fairy tale characters live among us in secret within their own New York City enclave, Fabletown.  This third collection includes issues #11-18. The Storybook Love arc itself only takes up four of those issues, #14-17.  It's a great story with significant character and relationship development, particularly between the series's two leads: Bigby (Big Bad Wolf) and Snow White.  It also ends with a great cliffhanger.

Issue #11, "Bag o' Bones," tells the adventures of Jack (he of the beanstalk) during the American Civil War.  The story gives a sense of how long the Fables have been in our world.  It also made me grateful for the time I have spent with the source material since I last visited this series.  The tale is straight out of Grimm: Jack wins a magic bag in a card game, then uses it to cheat Death.  Disastrous consequences follow.

Issues #12 and 13 are a two-part arc in which the Fables must cover their tracks when a nosy reporter gets way too close to their secret.  Just as the Potterverse wizards must hide their true nature from Muggles, so must the Fables preserve the ignorance of the Mundies.  The Fables, though, are inclined towards darker, more violent tactics to achieve their ends. 

#18 is a Lilliputian story.  Jonathan Swift's minifolk play a meaningful role in the Storybook Love arc so it's only appropriate they should get their own tale.  "Barleycorn Brides" tells of how the Lilliputians, initially all male, managed to find female mates.

I continue to be impressed by the series and curious about the source material.  I'm definitely up for more.  Next up, Volume 4: The March of the Wooden Soldiers.

10 comments:

  1. That's a series I'd like to go back and read one day. I have first prints of the first few issues.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm really glad to have gone back to the beginning of the series. I once picked up a random issue and was unimpressed. Now it all makes more sense.

      Delete
  2. I suspect Bag O Bones wants us to believe Jack of the Beanstalk doesn't believe in the no win scenario. So given Grimm is the title of Fable comic series, Jack must be gambling with life and death after winning in a high stakes game, fascinating I wonder how it turns out for Jack.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You've got the general idea. It's a fun story.

      Delete
  3. This sounds pretty cool. It reminds me of that Telltale game 'Wolf Among Us'. Somehow never ran into the comic before. Going to have to look it up. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Wolf Among Us is, in fact, based on the Fables comics.

      Delete
  4. Ooh, that sounds like a great series - might make a good Netflix original series ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There have been efforts to pitch Fables as a tv series. NBC had it in development, then went with Grimm instead. ABC bought the rights, then launched Once Upon a Time. There is a film in the works.

      Delete
  5. I love a good graphic novel or comic. This series sounds great. Definitely will have to look for it. Thanks for sharing. :)
    ~Jess

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I highly recommend starting at the beginning if you do. Volume 1 is called Legends in Exile.

      Delete