We may know them as Snow White, The Big Bad Wolf and Prince Charming, but once upon a time they were simply living out their lives in the Homelands. Then The Adversary attacked, forcing them from their own magical world into our very mundane one. Now, the Fables do their best to live under the radar, keeping out of view from the “mundy” world, but deep down they desire nothing more than to reclaim their long lost home.
Equally epic and scope and intensely character focused, Fables is simply one of the best comic book series out there. As someone who has always loved fairy tales, I initially picked it up after hearing that the series not only explored popular characters (such as Snow White), but lesser known ones as well. It didn’t take me long before I realized that I was immersing myself in a truly rich world that not only drew it’s inspiration from fairy tales, but nursery rhymes, classic works of children’s literature, and folklore in general. Fables takes characters (some very familiar to us, others not so much), and takes them places where we never imagined them going before. Fables also features some very nice artwork. Although guests artists will enter from time to time, most of the art is done by Mark Buckingham, who quickly shapes up to be a talent of note.
I’d recommend picking up Fables if you’re a fan of fantasy period. Being a comic book lover might help, but Fables actually seems like a great introductory work to those curious about the world of comics, but are turned off by all of the capes. Over the past decade, Fables has collected their main line into eighteen graphic novels, and this is where you should start (although the prequel graphic novel 1001 Nights of Snowfall makes a fine, if atypical alternate entry point). Fables also features many spin off series, and seeing as I haven’t read them all yet, I can’t really recommend them (although the Cinderella ones seem to be a lot of fun). One volume I do suggest skipping would be the thirteenth, The Great Fables Crossover, which is the series’s one sour note and not required reading to understand the rest. I highly recommend heading over to your local library or comic book shop and checking out Vol 1: Legends in Exile.