It’s been in the making for the past few months, and our final Fables Graphic Content “book club” meeting has arrived. As you may know, we’ve been meeting up each week to discuss Fables graphic novels. We’ve finally arrived at the latest Fables TPB.
This series just keeps getting better! It’s won 12 Eisner Awards (Nominated for four more this year), Fables TPB Vol. 11: War and Pieces continues its long line of excellence and is the culmination of over six years of waiting. Our favorite storybook fables take to the offense as they venture back to the homelands to overthrow The Adversary and his puppet master: Geppetto. Everyone has prepared for war and they’re done waiting. It’s on!
Before going to war, Blue decides to tell Rose Red just how he feels . . . which ends in complete disaster. She confesses that she had a crush on him just after he moved up to the farm, but that crush has evolved into a friendship that she doesn’t want to jeopardize. Poor Blue, he just can’t seem to catch a break in the love department. Next, we follow Cindy to Tierra del Fuego. She’s charged with transporting a very special asset back to Fabletown.
Then Willingham brings us War and Pieces. The Pride of Baghdad is an airship that has no match, and hundreds of dragons are dispatched, to no avail. Our heroes have planned for every contingency. Briar Rose (Sleeping Beauty) has infiltrated the Empire’s capital city and with one prick of her finger, the whole town falls to her enchantment . . . save for the Adversary! Meanwhile, Bigby and his highly trained crew protect the last beanstalk against numerous waves of attacks.
All is well and good, but The Adversary still has some tricks up his sleeve. After fighting off hundreds of dragons, a lone monster brings down the Pride as they stop for supplies before they hit their final target. All hands are commanded to abandon ship, and Charming and Sinbad are left with the difficult task of destroying the final gate. Charming is badly burned in the fire on the Pride and the two just barely complete their mission. The Adversary breaks out of Briar’s enchantment and regroups with his army to attack the beanstalk. Exciting stuff!
Bigby faces The Adversary in enchanted wood to wolf combat and is beaten down in the first encounter. He decides to take human form and face him again. This time the results swing the other way, and The Adversary is defeated and used for firewood for the victory wienie roast.
In the end, Bigby, Pinocchio, and Blue vanish to the Homelands to collect Geppetto. In an unbelievable turn of events, they’re there to bring him back to Fabletown to sign the Fabletown Compact, granting him amnesty for all past transgressions. Wow. One hell of a journey.
Now it’s time to discuss your thoughts:
What do you think of the new softer side of Cindy?
EF: Cindy is amazing, and perhaps my favorite character. In her original fairytale, she was pretty passive and reliant on others. Seeing her so strong, smart, and cunning is a revelation!
JC: We learn that she’s had centuries to devote to learning martial arts and training herself to use any object as a deadly weapon. She’s completely freaking BA. Time and time again, she gets herself out of these incredible situations and accomplishes her mission.
Did the Fables prove to be too arrogant in the end, or was it inevitable that The Adversary win a battle?
EF: I think mistakes are inevitable during war–no one’s perfect. Plus, it wouldn’t have been nearly as interesting if the Fables had straight-out won right away!
JC: They had success after success. All their plans were coming to fruition and the Empire had been wholly unsuccessful in their counter attacks. Of course they would be a little confident. I think that the Pride was going to go down at some point, and I’m glad that it wasn’t sooner. I think they could have done more to prevent the losses at the base of the Beanstalk, but then again, I’m no war strategist.
Any final thoughts on War and Pieces?
EF: I think it was absolutely incredible, but . . . I’m still waiting for the other shoe to drop. This ended a little too neatly. On another note, I want to add that I got to speak to Bill Willingham this week, and I almost dropped dead when he said he’d read all of our entries! He said he had something to clear up–something we didn’t understand–but he didn’t remember, so if you’re out there, Bill, let us know!
JC: We’ve been waiting for this for over six years. I’m extremely happy with how it turned out and am very excited to see what’s next for our Fables!
Now’s your chance to join the discussion! Share your thoughts below.