Fables Vol. 14: Witches by Bill Willingham
With art by Mark Buckingham, Steve Leialoha, David Lapham, Jim Fern, Andrew Pepoy, Craig Hamilton, and Daniel Green
Genre: Fantasy, Comics
Format: Trade Paperback Comics Collected Edition
Series: #14 in the Fables series
Publication Date: 2010
This volume 14 is a compilation of issues 86-93 of the comic series.
From the back cover:
Toil and Trouble
In the wreckage that was once Fabletown, the sinister Mister Dark is building a web of fear and anger that threatens to ensnare any Fable who strays too close. Cut off from the Woodland building’s business office and its trove of magical weapons, the exiled free Fables must now turn to their oldest and most powerful members–the witches and warlocks who once occupied the Woodland’s 13th floor–to defeat this latest adversary. But even those still trapped within the business office struggle against a legion of uncaged foes, rivalries within the Fables’ sorcerous community threaten to fracture their united front–and open them up to destruction.
I enjoyed this one a lot. It features some new characters but it also features quite a few characters that have been playing supporting roles in previous volumes.
The opening issue gives a bit of background on Mr. Dark and those who locked him away long ago.
After hearing for many issues about witches on the 13th floor it was fun to get to know them a little better. The power struggle within the group is a fun bit of politics and power play. Ozma looks like a young girl but has an ambitious streak and head for plotting that is far beyond the years of her appearance. It was wonderful to see Frau Totenkinder take the lead on an important mission and reveal some surprising things about herself.
I also enjoyed the story of Bufkin the flying monkey trapped in the ruins of the business office with his buddy Frankenstein’s head. The dangers buried deep beneath the ruined Woodlands building are not to be taken lightly but Bufkin manages to show that he’s more clever than he’s been credited.
The final issue took the story to Haven where the Frog Prince is ruling the kingdom. He’s determined to never harm anyone but when a murder is committed his resolution may be tested.
The art in this volume was wonderfully varied. The introduction of new characters and settings made for a wide variety of looks to the pages. While much of it was dark and ominous there was plenty of comic relief and fun in the artwork too.
I love this series and one of these days I’m going to need to buy my own copies so that I can reread it from the beginning