Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Grimm Fairy Tales: Unleashed Volume 1 – review

Writer: Pat Shand & Ors

Artists: various

First Published: 2013

Contains spoilers

The Blurb: Earth and the Four Realms that surround it have been witness ro great evil over the centuries. The Dark One, the Dream Eater, Helios and the Jabberwocky are just a few of the entities that have attempted to corrupt and destroy humanity. But none of them has been a greater threat than The Being.

Now, the guardian of the Nexus, Sela Mathers, must join forces with four monster hunters in a battle against this powerful entity and the hordes of vampires, demons, werewolves and zombies that he has unleashed upon an unsuspecting Earth. Part One of the Greatest Grimm Fairy Tales Event yet begins here!

The review: I was not aware of the Xenescope Grimm Fairy Tales series before reading this, but from what I can see it is a far ranging and large series of independent comics that takes Fairy Tale and mythological characters and spins stories around them. Many early editions had Sela Mathers showing people fairy tales as lessons for life and the concept expanded from there.

This is an event drawing in many threads of the expanded GFT universe and there is the danger, of course, that a new reader could be lost. The volume does contain a character bio section that helps, and the fact that, for instance, part of this includes Greek Gods and Liesel Van Helsing (of the famous family) also helps. There are cross references to mini-series and full series that promise expansion of story background but, all in all, that is not going to help the casual reader. Some of the inter-personal antagonism was lost on the new reader.

However the story was fairly simple – incidentally, the vampiric element coming in the form of a lot of vampire cannon-fodder and Samira, The Being's main Lieutenant. It was pretty much end of the world stuff and this volume actually only really puts the pieces into play and into order – I’m guessing volume 2 will contain the meat of the story.

I enjoyed the artwork – there was a slickness to the house style and an outlandishness (with what amounts to a misogynistic view of female body image if I'm going to be honest) that fit in with a “superhero” vibe and – despite the body image issue mentioned – it was nice to see so many female protagonists included. The artwork did make my mind did spin off to Heavy Metal to some degree too.

All in all a good comic book romp, slightly marred by the need to know some background (but not catastrophically, and it did its best to bring newer readers to speed). 6 out of 10.


Unknown said...

I think on fairy tales, I prefeer fables, which is much more developed and elegant.
Grimm Fairy Tales comics by Zenoscope can be a fun read, but i would not buy them, I would just borrow! by the way, did you try the new Vampirella series? Have a good day, your blog is grea, Elisabeth Neveux

Taliesin_ttlg said...

thanks for the nice comment about the blog Elisabeth :) I can understand the view iro zenoscope

I haven't tried the new Vampirella series, unfortunately time, cost, and the shear amount of vampire material out there sometimes gets in the way - is it any good?