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Fables Vol. 13: The Great Fables Crossover Paperback – February 9, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
But...I just barely tolerated this story arc.
This is a long-winded and tiresome series of books. The tone isn't wry. It is leaden. Lots of flat jokes.
The basic idea is that Jack wanders back into the world of the New York fables as things are turned upside down by the Literals. The Literals are characters -- Writer's Block, Pathetic Fallacy, etc. -- that personify the writing process. (There's a character named Humor who looks like Groucho Marx and who runs around holding a rubber chicken. Because that's how you personify the prose genre of Humor. No kidding.)
I'd be fine with the temporary insertion of allegorical characters if that yielded something vital about the nature of the Fables universe. Or if they pushed the stories forward of the Farm Fables or of the ex-Manhattan Fables. Instead, the whole thing struck me as being a hot mess. A very long hot mess. A hot mess with limited character development. A hot mess with a lot of half-baked meta-comics ideas.
The art is still great!
Now if you love the character of Jack of Fables, you'll probably enjoy this. This principally a Jack story (with some nice moments for Rose Red and Stinky.)
I figure you can skip this thing and move on with the Fables series without losing a whole lot. Do you really need another crossover?
The crossover centers on Kevin Thorn, an omnipotent writer who can destroy and recreate the universe simply by writing in his special book with his special pen. Besides familiar Fables like Snow White, Bigby Wolf, Jack and Rose Red (plus dozens of anthropomorphic animals and household items), a new race of beings appear - the Literals. These include the Genres, physical manifestations like "Science Fiction", "Western" and "Comedy" that aid Thorn with his re-creation. Jack has learned of Thorn's threat, and returns to the Farm with the news, where he is met by his long lost son. A band of Fables led by Snow White and Bigby then pursue Thorn and his Genres to prevent the imminent apocalypse.
Willingham smashes the fourth wall so much that it becomes tiresome. Much is made of Jack leaving his eponymous spin-off for the original title, and the disappointing narrative is overwhelmed by its self-referential metafiction. At least the artwork is strong as in the rest of the series, and Amazon's price of $12.25 for 224 pages seems like a great deal, less than half of the original $2.99/issue cover price. Hardcore fans of the series will probably enjoy this volume, but as a casual fan I was disappointed.
To summarize where we are at the start of this (minor spoilers to follow)- the characters of both ongoing books have been ousted from their homes- Jack and co. from Golden Boughs, destroyed in the battle with Bookburner, and the Fables are up at the Farm following the collapse of the Woodland building by Mr. Dark's evil magics. Kevin Thorne, a longtime background character in the Fables book, was revealed to be one of the Literals- embodiments of literary devises- and an important one at that, the embodiment of storytelling itself. He's decided his creations- the Fables/the universe?- has gotten out of control and he's going to end it all and start over. The crossover begins with Jack calling the Fables for help, and they dispatch Snow and Bigby to head out west and investigate Jack's claims. When they arrive Jack leaves in a huff and heads to the Farm (and the main Fables book), leaving Snow and Bigby (and the Jack of Fables supporting cast) to deal with the Literals.
This swapping is probably my favorite element of the crossover. Snow and Bigby are out of their element in Jack's book, and Jack's been apart from the main Fables for so long that there are a lot of interesting character beats to be found.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This crossover storyline REALLY works only if you're familiar with both books, and since I hadn't read Jack of Fables, I was seriously confused. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Glenn G. Burnside III
I have loved every volume of Fables up to this point. But this volume is one of the worst things I've ever read. Read morePublished 5 months ago by David
And in the due course of time, the Great Fables Crossover occurred.....
This is really more in line with the Jack Of Fables series, despite the fact that it bridges... Read more
Even for hardcore fans, this one makes no sense. Willingham uses half this book to take shots at his old English teachers, and he may have been influenced by Mike Carey's... Read morePublished 20 months ago by T. Cue.
I saw all the awful reviews for this arc so once I had caught up with both Fables AND Jack of Fables I walked in wary to see how the arc was going to play out and needless to say I... Read morePublished 24 months ago by SMTVash
I could have skipped this one and not have missed a thing. It was funnier than I expected though and the color on my kindle looked brilliant.Published on February 2, 2014 by Mio