Fables soars past issue number 100 with this collection, and given the stories that have led us to this point, one might think that it’s time to start playing around with the idea behind the series, extending it to include some new characters and embrace some new themes. And I guess it does that, but it doesn’t really seem as interesting or as thematic as what’s come before. Now we’re presented with the idea that the Fables need to be superheroes instead of just Fables. I mean, they already have the magical powers, but now they’re getting wrapped up in ridiculous costumes to fight Mr. Dark? It seems odd, and not a little disjointed.
I think I get it: The costumes give the Fables, who feel powerless and useless, the hope that they need to keep moving forward in their day-to-day lives. No one in power seems to think there’s anything they can do to stop Mr. Dark, and the suits help the rest of them feel empowered. If that actually led anywhere in the story, I might be able to embrace it more, but it all winds up being an aside, as they’re not even the ones who have any input into the battle. And that annoyed me, too, that the main characters had little (if anything) to do with the battle, and then it wound up being a pat little solution that took care of two issues at once. It was disappointing.
I’ve said before that the collections seem to follow a trend where something major happens in one, and then the next one is just a throwaway arc that introduces a few elements that will take center stage in a future arc. This happens in Super Team, twice, and I have to say, I’m far more interested in those potential stories than anything that takes place here in this one. I guess I should have expected it, based on the trend, but I’d at least like to feel like the author was making an effort to write something interesting in the meantime.