Fables (Vol 19): Snow White by Bill Willingham
Art: Mark Buckingham, Steve Leialoha, Shawn McManus, and Andrew Pepoy
Let’s start with half this trade being taken up by the tale of Bufkin and the overthrow of the Gnome King that ruled Oz. Boring. There were no emotional connections. It felt like reading some kind of dry history textbook, not enjoying the story. And Lily felt like a fetishized woman who did everything for love. Her obsession with Bufkin started out as gross, and then the end where it shows the “three times they fell in love and she pumped out a bunch of babies” made Bufkin also gross. He could only love her if they were the same species. And all Lily wanted was love, babies, and to play house. They only did things when they were different species. Don’t even get me started on the weird note that when they were both Barelycorn, they had a boatload of children, but the children all died.
Then we meet Prince Brandish. Or more that we discover Werian Holt is actually Prince Brandish, who back-in-the-day was betrothed to Snow White after she and Rose Red broke a curse where he was turned into a bear. Frankly, after seeing more of him in action, he was much better off as a bear.
I’m not a fan of evil characters being misogynists just because they happen to be going up against a strong female character, in this case, Snow White. I feel that it’s lazy writing in general. I’m also pretty shocked to see someone hold onto a childhood promise of engagement for centuries, especially when he thought that Snow White was dead.
The kidnapping of Snow White was sloppy. Sure King Cole might back off due to Fabletown laws, but I don’t believe that the rest of them would just sit around waiting. Even the witches, who were slightly pro-active, were way more passive than they’ve ever been. It was hard to tell how much time passed between when Snow was kidnapped and when she killed Brandish, but it seemed to take longer than it should’ve.
The whole thing seemed to be some kind of sloppy metaphor on Willingham’s part. Or him trying to understand how women can be abused and stay with said abusers.
I was shocked by Bigby’s death. (Not that they killed him, since Fables is ending soon.) But that he was pretty nonchalantly killed off. I’ve always felt that Bigby was Willingham’s favorite character and would’ve expected him to go down in some kind of blaze of glory.
I’m not sure what to make about Beast not releasing Geppetto to the Blue Fairy, but instead making a marriage proposal. I get that it’s some kind of loophole law. However, seems that since the Blue Fairy would have no interest at all in marrying Geppetto that she’d have some kind “no” to pull and then go back to killing him. On the other hand, I do like the Lady of the Lake.
After I read this volume, I debated how much longer I was going to keep reading the Fables series and its spin-offs. However, with Willingham and Buckingham’s announcement that they’re ending series, I think I’ll wait until the end. I’ve gotten this far, and the completist inside won out.
See for yourself what happens to Snow White and Bigby and buy Fables Vol. 19: Snow White.