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Fairest #17

by Tori B. on July 04, 2013

Ah, the classic tale of the beautiful damsel stuck in quicksand only to have Prince Maharaja Charming come to her rescue.
Writer: Sean E Williams | Artists: Stephen Sadowski, Phil Jimenez, Andrew Pepoy, Dan Green, & Andrew Dalhouse
Cover: Adam Hughes | Publisher: Vertigo
So far there’s been mixed feelings on the current arc of Fairest. It started off with our main Fable of being a strong and independent woman type and her journey, as Fairest stories have it, and then the sleazeball Charming worms his way into the story in hopes of getting into her pants (and has yet to succeed really).
Their story picks up right where we left them with Nalayani stuck in quicksand and panicking heavily. Charming indeed comes to her rescue and has a great battle with a crocodile. Sure, maybe it shows that he’s not sleazeball that we all think he is with his successful rescue of the damsel and it’s almost a little sweet how he calms her down with the telling of his story, but I like my Fairest stories to have the ladies do all the crocodile fighting.
What was nice was it did give Charming a chance to share his tale on how he became Maharaja and the rhythm of it felt reminiscent to Arabian Nights with his story woven into their story and they break from his story to deal with the day and come night, they go back to the story. (It’s also nice to see that he’s not trying to do anything else with Nalayani to “pass the time”). His story happens to be the most interesting thing that happens in this issue.
Aside from our two main characters we see that something’s not right with the people left at the Maharaja’s camp and that it has something to do with their foes, the Dholes and shows that something bigger is coming its way towards our Fables.
It’s easy to forget that you’re reading a story about Fables. This tale is removed far from Fabletown, it’s exotic, and despite the fancy fonts, that Arabian Nights feel comes mostly from the artwork, which is exceptional. Warm colours, faces with obvious expression (often exasperated which I secretly love), and the flashbacks are more dull in colour to help a reader put timelines and perspective into place. If anything Fairest becomes worth it sometimes for the artwork alone. Also Adam Hughes’ covers are consistently gorgeous but this issue is certainly one of his most imaginative ones and it’s no wonder it’s so wickedly popular art wise.
While entertaining, this issue just didn’t have the same energy as other Fairest issues. Though with the addition of more problems without even managing to solve current and original problems, there’s still a lot of exciting potential hidden for issues to come.

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