Fables: Legends in Exile TPB collecting #1-5
This elaborate fantasy series begins as a whodunit, but quickly unfurls into a much larger story about Fabletown, a place where fairy tale legends live alongside regular New Yorkers. Years ago, fables and fairy tales like Jack and the Beanstalk and Cinderella "were a thousand separate kingdoms spread over a hundred magic worlds," until they were invaded and driven into hiding and, eventually, into modern-day Gotham. And so, on the city streets we find Beauty and the Beast in trouble with the law and Prince Charming reduced to a broke cad auctioning off his royal title, while his ex-wife, Snow White, rules over the de facto kingdom the fables created. When Snow White's sister, Rose Red, disappears from a blood-soaked apartment, the Wolf, reformed and now the kingdom's house detective, is assigned to the case. Willingham uses the Wolf's investigation to introduce readers to Fabletown's dissolute, hard-luck inhabitants, and he is at his best here, relishing one-liners and spinning funky background information of a world where fairy tale characters spend their time fretting about money and thinking up get-rich schemes. The mystery seems mostly an excuse to delineate Willingham's world, as the caper is easily resolved-in true fairy tale fashion-during a massive ballroom celebration. Willingham's dialogue is humorous, his characterizations are sharp and his plot encompasses a tremendous amount of information with no strain at all. The art, mostly by Medina and Leialoha, is well drawn and serviceable, if somewhat unremarkable, with occasional flares of decorative invention. But it's Willingham's script that carries the tale.
"When a savage creature known only as the Adversary conquered the fabled lands of legends and fairy tales, all of the infamous inhabitants of folklore were forced into exile. Disguised among the normal citizens of modern-day New York, these magical characters have created their own peaceful and secret society within an exclusive luxury apartment building called Fabletown. But when Snow White's party-girl sister, Rose Red, is apparently murdered, it is up to Fabletown's sheriff, a reformed and pardoned Big Bad Wolf, to determine if the killer is Bluebeard, Rose's ex-lover and notorious wife killer, or Jack, her current live-in boyfriend and former beanstalk-climber."
Fables: Animal Farm TPB collecting #6-10
The inhabitants of various fairytale worlds have been beaten out of their realms by The Adversary, and for well over a century they've been lurking amongst us in New York City. At least, the less conspicuous creatures have. The Kipling animals along with assorted pigs, Uncle Remus characters, three snoozing giants and a dragon have been holed up in an upstate community overseen by Weyland Smith. But when Snow White and her estranged sister Rose Red visit the farm they find it in revolutionary spirit. The population resents being restricted to a few thousand acres, they resent their "jailor" being human-looking, and they resent the freedom enjoyed by the others. Although hopelessly outnumbered and outgunned, the animals want to take the fight back to the Adversary. And now that Snow White knows this, she can't be allowed to leave.
Fables: Storybook Love TPB collecting #11-18
A fairy tale ending? Not likely. In the Fables' world, there isn't a lot of happily-ever-after to go around. As refugees from the lands of make-believe, the Fables have been driven from their storybook realms and forced to blend in with our gritty, mundane reality. But that doesn't mean they don't have any room for romance - or the pain, betrayal and jealous rage that go along with it. In fact, love may be blooming between two of the most hard-bitten, no-nonsense Fables around. But are they destined for happiness - or a quick and untimely death?
Fables: March of the Wooden Soldiers TPB collects 19-21, 23-27 and the one shot 'The Last Castle'
Bill Willingham and Mark Buckingham continue the engrossing tale of a group of Fables on the run from the Adversary, forced to live in New York City. The Big Bad Wolf, Snow White, Pinocchio, and the rest of Fabletown make an appearance in this latest epic, the biggest story to hit the book yet.
It starts with three men; all dressed alike, seeking to gain access to guns. They soon run into Jack, trying to hatch one of his schemes. The three men are soon revealed as agents of the Adversary who are their for two things; to force Fabletown to give up its magic items and ranks, and to return Pinocchio to where they came from. The choice is clear for the fables; fight or die. But with the distraction of an election, a new face to Fabletown, and Bigby out of town, can the fables muster enough of a defense to save themselves? As mentioned, the collection also features the Last Castle, the tale of the final stand of the fables in their homeland. Among the famous fables appearing are Robin Hood and Boy Blue, the latter whom meets and falls in love with Red Riding Hood. But with death all around, can the two's romance survive?
Fables: The Mean Seasons TPB collecting #22 + #28-33
With the Battle of Fabletown won, and the surrounding city of New York none the wiser, the Fables have gained a little time for rebuilding and reflection - in between the interrogation of the Adversary's agent and the anticipation of Snow White's impending motherhood. For Bigby Wolf, the father of her soon-to-be newborns, that means a visit with an old friend - and a reminiscence of another, even deadlier war. For the Mayor of Fabletown, it means a rude awakening to the harsh realities of civic administration - and its conflicting demands. And for Snow herself, it means a long, painful labor - and a series of joyous, heartwrenching surprises.
Fables: Homelands TPB collecting #34-41
Homelands follows Boy Blue on a mission of revenge as he uncovers the Adversary's true identity! Plus, the 2-part story of Jack's adventures in Hollywood and the one-shot story of Mowgli's return to Fabletown.
Fables: Arabian Nights (and days) TPB 7 collecting #42-47
Fables: Arabian Nights (And Days) opens a new front in the struggle between the Fables and the Adversary as the worlds of the Arabian Fables are invaded -- leading to an unprecedented diplomatic mission to Fabletown and a bad case of culture shock! This seventh volume of the popular Vertigo series also includes "The Ballad of Rodney and June," the 2-part story of forbidden love among the Adversary's wooden soldiers.
Fables: Wolves TPB 8 collecting #48-51
Bigby Wolf is the focus of FABLES: WOLVES, the eighth collection of Bill Willingham’s 'Vertigo' comic series, an Eisner Award-winner seven times over – each of them richly deserved.
When we last saw the gruff former sheriff Bigby, he had fathered a slew of children with the ultra-hot Snow White and then abandoned them all to whereabouts unknown. WOLVES is anchored by a three-part story arc that has Mowgli (of THE JUNGLE BOOK fame) tracking Bigby down from his self-imposed exile in order to recruit him for an important mission alongside Cinderella for Fabletown, the metropolitan home of these nursery rhyme/fairy tale characters.
Fables: Sons of Empire TPB 9 collecting #52-59
Pinocchio suffers seriously divided loyalties between his father, the evil Adversary, and his fellow Fable refugees in New York. Plus, Bigby Wolf reluctantly decides it's finally time to square accounts with his long-estranged father, the North Wind, and makes a journey with Snow White and their kids to find him.
Fables: 1001 Nights of Snowfall (OGN; a Charles Vess, Brian Bolland, John Bolton, Michael Wm. Kaluta, James Jean, Tara McPherson, Derek Kirk Kim, Esao Andrews, Mark Buckingham, Mark Wheatley and Jill Thompson).
Set in the early days of Fabletown, long before the FABLES series began! Featuring sequences illustrated by Charles Vess, Brian Bolland, John Bolton, Michael Wm. Kaluta, James Jean, Mark Buckingham, Jill Thompson and more, 1,001 NIGHTS OF SNOWFALL is both an entry point to the critically acclaimed series and an essential part of Willingham's enchanting and imaginative FABLES mythos. Traveling in Arabia as an Ambassador from the exiled FABLES community, Snow White is captured by the local sultan who wants to marry her (and then kill her). But the clever Snow attempts to charm the sultan instead by playing Scheherazade, telling him fantastic stories for a total of 1,001 nights. Running the gamut from horror to dark intrigue to mercurial coming-of-age, FABLES:1,001 NIGHTS OF SNOWFALL reveals the secret histories of familiar FABLES characters through a series of compelling and visually illustrative tales.