I Hate Fairyland #15
A girl trapped in Fairyland grows up to be a terrible person in this dark comedy
Creators: Skottie Young, Jean-Francois Beaulieu, Nae Piekos, Kent Wagenschutz
Genre: Fantasy, Dark Comedy
Reader Appeal: Mature Teens, Adults
Publishing Rating: Mature
This month, I set off to the comic book store determined to find the most childlike and cartoonish issue on the shelf. I Hate Fairyland’s cover immediately grabbed my attention with it’s big-eyed, curly-haired little girl decked out in pink striped tights, a frilly dress and yellow bows. She’s surrounded by cute and cuddly creatures, and there’s a rainbow spewing across the cover. Even the word “hate” in the title is crossed out and replaced by “Love!” written in bubble letters. But to my dismay, I flipped to the back cover only to discover this comic was rated for mature audiences. Wanting to help prevent parents from judging a comic by it’s cover, I knew I had to review it.
After a long time of going back and forth, I’ve decided that I.m undecided. (Earth shattering, I know.) But I wrestled with this series a lot and it took me a surpringly long time to decide to ride the fence on this one. On one hand, I found this comic kinda humorous, but on the other, it was somewhat disturbing. But most of all, I just felt apathetic towards it.
We join Gertrude on the final leg of her quest to get out of the Fairyland she hates so much and return home. Once a quite unpleasant little girl, Gert is “going good” for a change. Donning a brand new cheery disposition, she’s finally gotten the key to leave she despises. But Fairlyland’s most notorious assassins are on a mission to kill Gertrude before she has a chance to leave.
Honestly, I’m left racking my brain for a list of positives things about I Hate Fairyland, but nothing stood out to me as I read it. There wasn’t much of anything that was memorable that I loved. Don’t get me wrong: I didn’t hate reading it either. It’s just one of those stories that you read, put down, and never think about think about every again.
The one thing I really did like about this comic is what grabbed my attention in the first place: the illustrations and design. Beaulieu and Piekos come together to create a world so saccharine, dark comedy seems unexpected, and therefore more hilarious. It’s so bright, light-hearted and fun that you wouldn’t expect such a sinister plot.
Putting aside my personal desire for the story to match the sugary-sweet illustrations, this story is hard to hate. Do I wish there was a happily-ever-after? Absolutely. Do I think it would be better if it was a little less gruesome? Probably. Is it my cup of tea? Nah. But this comic was designed to be a dark comedy, and it delivers on its promise.
Parents--I strongly do not recommend allowing any of your kids who you wouldn’t consider a mature teen to read this comic. While it isn’t particularly awful in the way of language or sexual content, it’s true to it’s dark comedy roots and therefore is a bit disturbing. Even if you consider your teen mature, glance over the issue and make sure you know what they’re reading!
Let's Talk About It
Use these questions to spark discussion among family members who are interested in this comic book:
• How did having a positive attitude help Gertrude?
• Do you like dark comedy? Why or why not?
• What is something Gert could have done differently to make her journey more successful?
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