Fables, Vol. 4: March of the Wooden Soldiers by Bill Willingham
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
I’m glad that Bill Willingham thought to follow up the somewhat weaker Storybook Love with some good, old-fashioned war. It’s a smart move that gets us all back on the bandwagon of Fables = GOOD, Adversary = BAD.
We start with a seemingly unrelated tale: Little Boy Blue, who served as an aide de camp to the Fable general who led the last stand to protect the last gateway to the mundy world from the Fablelands, tells the sad tale of the fall of that army. In the process, he met and had a night of passion with Red Riding Hood (more nudity. It’s unfortunate, since it kind of tainted this volume for me). They were in love, but, thanks to a misunderstanding, she was left behind, while Blue made it out.
Aside: whenever I think of Little Boy Blue, I can’t help but to think of Michael Emerson:
Some of the art in the beginning of this volume is a little off. Hmm, never thought I’d have much of an opinion about that.
Anyway, so, Snow White is coping with her pregnancy as best she can when she has a dream in which she’s visited by the head of Colin Pig (who was murdered in Animal Farm), who warns her that great danger is coming. This dream puts her on edge.
In the meantime, the rest of Fabletown is dealing with the upcoming mayoral election, which will, for the first time in Fabletown’s history, have a candidate to vote for besides the incumbent, King Cole: Prince Charming.
But before the election can really get off the ground, Fabletown is faced with an unstoppable army that threatens not only to wipe out the citizens of Fabletown, but also threatens to out them to the mundys in the area. Reinforcements are called in from the upstate Farm, but Snow is worried that, without Bigby, who’s gone off to look into a troubling matter to the north, Fabletown won’t be able to hold its ground.
It’s all kinds of fun to see Fabletown gearing up for a battle royale, and to see some of the Adversary’s forces close-up for the first time. The battle itself is pretty epic, and there’s a good enough twist at the end to definitely make you want to pick up Volume 5.
Another solid “episode” of this series.
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