Fairest Vol 1: Wide Awake by Bill Willingham and Phil Jimenez
I have loved Phil Jimenez since his work on Wonder Woman, so it was delightful to see him turning his pencil to the world of Fables. Interestingly, this volume is less an origin story of Sleeping Beauty than it is a redemption tale of the Snow Queen. Ali Baba and the bottle imp are great additions to the cast, but the story belongs wholly to the women.
AND THEN THE LAMIA SHORT STORY, ZOMG!!!
Fairest Vol 2: The Hidden Kingdom by Lauren Beukes and Inaki Miranda
So on the one hand, I really enjoyed the various ways different parts of the Rapunzel mythology were woven together to create this. And I can see why having her in Japan makes a bunch of things make more sense thematically (what with the well etc.) but I couldn’t help but feel like it was somehow disrespectful of Japanese culture. I can’t even pinpoint the exact causes of my disquiet, but this volume, much like the bulk of its parent title, Fables, comes firmly from a conservative colonial European mindset, where other cultures as presented as weird and wacky and ultimately irrelevant. Idk, maybe it was just the general tone.
From a less socio-political perspective, the pacing of the comic was a bit off, particularly in the Rapunzel-Joel Crow interactions. Which, honestly, was prolly part of the former problem, as uneven pacing often makes it difficult to add depth to circumstances and relationships. So a worthy, entertaining effort, but not as good as the first volume.