Fairest #13

by Tori B. on March 06, 2013

And thus concludes the Hidden Kingdom – Rapunzel arc of Fairest. It was jam packed with a lot of Japanese lore (which is a little unusual for a Rapunzel story which normally refers to its Germanic roots) and was a very exciting and eventful arc, now it comes down to whether this closing issue does the arc justice (it does).
Writer: Lauren Beukes | Artists: Inaki Miranda
Cover: Adam Hughes | Publisher: Vertigo
Everything about the Rapunzel arc was everything you never expected from a story about Rapunzel— this goes for every story so far from Fairest (and Fables) but truly, the Japanese lore woven throughout this was amazing and to have it end so dramatically was near perfect. And like every good fairytale it comes with a life lesson that our protagonist has learned in order to overcome the opponents.
In this case Rapunzel learns about accepting her past, owning up to it rather than running away from it, and boy does she ever own up to her past. She owns up to it like a warrior. (I could spend this entire review just going on about how amazing Rapunzel looked throughout the entire issue starting from the very first page—Miranda’s artwork continues to outdo itself.) Even at the end of her story, she still has these struggles to face- she never does find her (real) children, and she’s even presented with the opportunity to live out her happily ever after with her true love but instead she’s grown as a woman learning about life and love and makes the tough decision to keep to her responsibilities in another world, even if that other world involves a mother whom she hates.
Rapunzel isn’t the only one to have shining moments though. Jack, for as much of a douche as he seems, he pulls through in the end (for a bit) and it never hurts to see Bigby jump into the action as his great wolf self. Also not to mention that Joel Crow is without a doubt the great knight in shining armor who deserves more love from Rapunzel (okay she does really love him but still).
This issue is totally indulgent on the action front, seriously. Every page just gets the blood going in intensity and action and you can’t help but cheer on the good guys.
Fairest just continues to take everything you love about fairytales and turn them into something that much cooler (which is quite the feat) and also appropriate them for the adults that we’ve inevitably become.
P.S. This issue has my favourite cover so far, which is saying a lot because Adam Hughes is a wizard of illustrations, but like the rest of the issue, there’s something incredibly captivating about this particular one.

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