The Quest for the Time Bird, written by Serge le tender and illustrated by Regis Loisel, is exactly what it sounds like; an homage to the epic quests of high literature. This is a multi-volume graphic novel that takes the reader on a journey through a new world with magic, danger, and adventure. As a huge fan of high fantasy, I must admit that I was very excited to read this, and thrilled to get a chance to review it.
The Quest for the Time Bird takes the reader to new worlds that are beautifully illustrated by Loisel. I particularly enjoyed many of the landscapes. He is also quite good at capturing emotions and the fine details of the face. That type of detail is paramount to a good graphic novel. The coloring really lent itself to the mood being portrayed in each scene, which I loved. I particularly liked watching the way the character Fol was drawn, in one panel he was drawn to look amusing, in the next, menacing. That was great. That character was probably the most fun in the entire piece.
In terms of the story being a high fantasy, I may have been a bit of my mark. It is certainly a fantasy, but not high in any expression of the term. As far as the narrative, the actual story is concerned, I didn’t like it at all. In fact, I struggled to finish it. Pelisse, who appears to be the stories protagonist or deuteragonist at the least, turns out to be little more than an ill-dressed piece of meat to be ogled, fondled, and slapped around at will by the male characters until we discover that she doesn’t even exist! The ridiculousness of how the female characters are treated in this tale does not end there, but I digress.
Many of the male characters lack any real depth or motivation, with the exception of Bragon. I found myself asking every few pages ‘why are they doing this’ or ‘what was the point of that’. It was quite disconcerting. Bragon is the most well rounded of all of the characters, but he is also a bit unevenly written. He seems kind, wise and brave throughout most of the story, but would suddenly lash out violently against Pelisse in the most over exaggerated and unnecessary ways that it would pull you from the story. I love reading, and I (0bviously) read a lot of comics. There is nothing worse than when a poorly written scene or character interaction pulls you out of an otherwise interesting tale.
In whole, if you love fantasy, and love reading about scantily clad and/or nude women who exist only to tease, please and be punching bags for the men in their lives, this graphic novel series is for you. If not… steer clear of this altogether. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
Vanee is an author, reader, writer and teacher that lives at the corner of coffee shop intellect and text book geek! She loves cons, comics and camaraderie, as well as fantasy, fiction, and fandoms. Vanee is a Black Girl Nerd!