WRITER: Serge Le Tendre
ARTIST: Regis Loisel
PUBLISHER: TITAN COMICS
RELEASE DATE: DECEMBER 2
The world of Akbar is in grave danger; Ramor, the cursed god, is about to be set free and spread unending chaos! The witch Mara can bind him to his prison, a conch shell, but she needs something special… the legendary Time Bird. She charges her daughter, Pelisse, with enlisting the help of the ageing warrior Bragon, and together they set out on a quest to save the world! But all is not as it seems – Bragon is an old flame of Mara’s and Pelisse has never met her father… With a fantastical twist, The Quest of the Time Bird is an epic journey through a magical realm of monsters, mysticism and mayhem.
This hardcover collects four volumes of trades from a story started as a French magazine serial in the mid 1980’s, but there is nothing dated about this tale. My first reaction to it is how impressed I was with its confidence. Many fantasy epics like this start with a “Once Upon a Time” feeling, but this jumped right in as Pelisse leaps on the back of the nearest lopwind (a flying bird steed) and starts on the quest.
She’s not the main character, though. She introduces us to Bragon, who is the person tasked to accept this quest, and Pelisse is along for the ride. Pelisse is definitely the eye candy of this excursion, wearing outfits that barely cover her at some points. Not only is her curvaceous figure commented upon, but she also uses it to expedite things. She’s not a bimbo, though. She’s a smart girl and a tough adventurer. The men in her party are inclined to protect and defend her, but only as often as she does the same for them. Bragon, an aging warrior, is inspired by her and grows to care for her as the quest goes on. There’s a change of viewpoint partway through that seems very organic and fitting, and the ending of it had some twists that I didn’t expect.
Going into this cold, I just thought it was a recent collection, because there is noting in it that points to the 1980’s and for a fantasy story it’s not extremely sexist. The characters are neither superheroic nor gravity-defying in their depiction, and the colors are just likely to be digital as they are painted or done with markers. It’s really lovely. It’s good storytelling, appropriate for Tweens and up. Buy it and give it to your favorite 12-year old fantasy fan for Christmas. It’s something they’ll remember when they get older.