I’ve said it before and I’ll continue to sing its praises until the series finale and beyond: I think Fables is one of the best comic series I’ve ever read. And while Fairest is no Fables, it is one of various Fables related books released over the years that has helped build and expand a universe that I absolutely love. Specifically, Fairest was created to showcase the female characters in the Fables universe (the fairest in all the land). While I’ve had my issues with this series over its run, I was very excited to hear that long time illustrator and collaborator on Fables, Mark Buckingham, was trading in art duties for the writer’s pen in Fairest #27. I believe my excitement was well founded, as this was one of my favorite issues of Fairest to date.
My fondness for this particular issue of Fairest probably has to do with how well it integrates with the main series. It’s not just a story based in the Fables universe, but it tackles an unresolved plot point from the main series that was long since forgotten–that being Prince Charming’s campaign promise that all animal fables who wanted it would receive a glamour so they can function in the human world. For some this may be a negative (after all, why not tell the story in Fables), but I actually like the overt continuity between the books. Many of the sub-plots also found their origin in Fables history, but Buckingham did a great job of succinctly retelling what we needed to know or may have forgotten over the years. The story did stray a bit from the series mission (the protagonist thus far is a male), but a new female character was briefly introduced that I suspect will move into that role as this arc develops. Otherwise, the story was fun, fast-paced, and jam-packed with a who’s who of the Fables universe. It was good to see familiar art by Russell Braun (Jack of Fables), who has not lost his touch illustrating so many of these wonderful characters. Kudos to him, as I imagine it cannot be stress-free illustrating a story written by a person whose art is synonymous with Fables.
With Fairest #27, Mark Buckingham proves that he’s been paying attention all these years as series artist for Fables. He’s drawn out various plot points and familiar themes from the main series to craft a new story that will interest long time readers and easily draw in new readers who may worry about jumping on board so late in the game. To those who have grown cold on Fairest or stopped reading the book entirely, I would suggest they pick up issue #27 and give it another try. I believe this last story arc in the series could easily turn out to be the best.
Reviewed by: Adam Alamo
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