There's a new classic in Comic Books Town.
Awards are sometimes helpful. I was looking for an additional X-mas gift for my brother when I saw a graphic novel with a mention that it was a winner of 3 Eisner Awards (R.I.P. Will Eisner, BTW, for he left us a few weeks ago). I thought Neil Gaiman had the monopoly of recycling old myths and fables, but Bill Willingham took that crown from him.
"Fables" are immortal (... as in mostly "not growing old". They can be killed) characters from our fairy tales, who have been forced centuries ago to escape their own magical worlds and kingdoms, as the elusive Adversary conquered all their lands. They retreated into our world, because it's the only one that the Adversary didn't seem to have an interest in. They have been trying to live hidden in Fabletown, a community in New York. Snow White is the mayor's deputy, and the one actually in charge.
The first "book" revolves around the murder of Rose Red, Snow White's wild sister, and the investigation by Bigby Wolf (formerly the wolf of our darkest tales, now usually in human form, "reformed", no longer eating Fables or children or anything alive...) and Snow.
The second one tells a revolt at the Farm, the place in the country where all the Fables who can't assume a human shape live, far from the eyes of humans.
Two more books have been published in graphic novels so far, exploring this world and developing (or killing) more characters. The recurring ones gain more depth, new ones appear.
With guest appearances by Blue Beard, Prince Charming, Jack Horner and more, strongly built writing and constantly pleasant art, it's a delightful read.
Using characters and stories from our childhood tales allows an immediate familiarity with the characters, while leaving room for tasty new interpretations and complete surprises.