Current Reviews


Last Unicorn #1

Posted: Tuesday, April 27, 2010
By: Karyn Pinter

Peter S. Beagle, adapted by Peter B. Gillis
Renae De Liz, Ray Dillon (i,c), Robbie Robbins (l)
IDW Publishing
EDITOR's NOTE: The Last Unicorn #1 will be in stores Wednesday, April 28th.

Adapted from Peter Beagle's 1968 classic, The Last Unicorn has now been given a new life in the world of comics. It tells the tale of a unicorn as she comes to realize she may be the last of her kind. The unicorn sets out in search of any unicorns that might be left in the world and in her journey comes across many unique creatures like herself.

The only word for this comic is perfect. Really, it's hard to find any other word for this. When I was a kid I loved this book, as I'm sure so many others did, especially girls. What wasn't there to like about high adventure with unicorns? I wonder why it took so long for a comic adaptation of this book to come out, but after reading this, I'm glad it's here now. After forty years perhaps this is just the right time for it to happen, because it's not every day an enchanting book like The Last Unicorn becomes a phenomenally translated comic. Peter Gillis adapts this work flawlessly, shortening it to comic length, but keeping the wonder and spirit alive. There is a certain magic to the story that can't be silenced. It's dark and heartbreaking, but it's also tender and whimsical. Peter S. Beagle created a work so complex that with anyone other than Beagle trying to translate it, the story might have lost some of the magic. However, Peter B. Gillis writes as if Beagle was guiding his very thought and hand.

The art! If the fantastic adaptation wasn't wonderful enough, then the art will put an end to any doubts you had about this comic. It is beautiful. So beautiful it makes me want to cry. I don't think there has ever been a more perfect marriage of art and words before. It's like the pencils simply formed as the words were put to paper. It is exactly what the story should look like, and the colors are just jaw dropping; they rendered me speechless. The unicorn looks like she actually glows. There will be moments where you either forget the words on the page or you look at them after you gaze at the artwork, it's that good. The sky is the most startling part of the coloring. You have to see it, I can't explain it to you. The vivid blast of red and orange of dusk is the same as a single flower used in the opening page, and it's an amazing harmony.

The Last Unicorn is mind-bogglingly wonderful. Perfect, absolutely, unfathomably perfect. All the magic and wonder is here, accompanied by some of the most astounding art to be seen in a comic. It's a guaranteed great read and a definite candidate for best of the year.

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