Duck Duck Book

36 – fables
08.2.2006, 10:52 am
Filed under: comix, fiction

Fables [comic book series] / Bill Willingham, writer ; Lan Medina, Mark Buckingham, Craig P. Russell, Tony Akins, pencillers ; Steve Leialoha, Craig Hamilton, Jimmy Palmiotti, inkers ; Sherilyn van Valkenburgh, Daniel Vozzo, colorists ; Todd Klein, letterer.
New York : DC Comics, c2002- .
[MCL call number: GN WILLINGHA; number of copies and holds vary for each volume]

Imagine that the fairy tales are real. All those people (including the animal people), they’re all regular folks. Then imagine that there is an enormous war in the world where they live, and that after getting their asses kicked by the forces of evil, the fables are forced to flee their world. Some make it through the gap into, well, to here. Modern, present-day, our-version-of-earth. The one you’re in right now, where you’re reading this.

Now the fables have established a kingdom in exile in New York City — those who got out have, anyway, Beauty, the Beast, Little Boy Blue, Cinderella, and others. Except, obviously if you’re one of the Three Little Pigs or Thumbelina, you’re not going to blend right into 21st century urban life, so the animal and other un-human-looking folk live at “The Farm” in upstate New York. The fable community has its own laws, institutions, holidays, traditions, and taboos — in short, it’s a whole culture, and the fact that fable society has to exist undetected underneath the surface of human society puts a huge amount of stress on everyone in Fabletown. The tension between the fables at The Farm and those in Fabletown is palpable as well, and of course everyone fantasizes (or schemes) about the possiblity of someday returning home.

As volume one opens, Fabletown’s deputy mayor Snow White is busy managing government for figurehead mayor Old King Cole, and when her sister Rose Red disappears under mysterious circumstances, she puts Bigby Wolf (formerly the Big Bad Wolf, now reformed and on the job as Fabletown sheriff) in charge of the investigation. Through this whodunit we are introduced to all the major fairytale players, and the story begins.

N.b.: Fables is up to #51 in its comic book form, and the single issues have so far been reissued in seven trade paperbacks (issues #1-47). The first issue of Willingham and company’s spin-off series, Jack of the Fables, was just released this July — for that you have to go to the comic book store cos it’s not in graphic novel form yet.


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