Ansel and Archer head on a quest to find the mysterious Folklords after being strictly forbidden from leaving their village. Will the Folklords be able to explain these visions of modern day Earth that Ansel has? Folklords #2 by BOOM! Studios is sure to catch us by surprise!
FOLKLORDS #2 (OF 5)
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: Matt Smith
Colorist: Chris O’Halloran
Letterer: Jim Campbell
Editor: Eric Harburn
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: December 18th, 2019
Previously in Folklords: Ansel has been having dreams and visions of modern day Earth and has used his visions to create modern gadgets. This “magic” and visions lead him to a quest to search for the Folklords. However, this quest is strictly forbidden by the Librarians who run his village. Deciding to run away from with his friend Archer, he begins a long quest to find this mythological people who can explain the world he sees in his dreams.
DREAM THE IMPOSSIBLE DREAM
Warning: Graphic themes throughout this book.
Once upon a time Ansel and Archer left their village to find the mysterious Folklords. Throughout their first moments of adventure, we get a brief look on how Archer, an elf, came to the human village and how he became an orphan. As they are traveling, they head into an Enchanted Forest where they find a hut in the woods. The denizen seems to be an older woman and Archer immediately uses a sling to hit this person on the forehead. Running for their lives, this trapper is able to catch Ansel who demands a kiss. After this forced kiss, the two protagonists are able to escape.
As they continue through the Enchanted Forest they meet a woman named Greta near a river. Making camp for the evening, Greta explains that she lost her brother in the woods and that the Weeping Wood Killer roams this forest. Ansel has another vision and finds a phone with a mysterious text message on it. He suddenly wakes up to find himself alone and runs through the forest looking for his companions. He finds a house covered in candies but faints before he can reach the door. When he awakens he finds himself tied to a table and is overlooked by a scary looking man.
READ BETWEEN THE LINES
There is a lot of subtlety here that you will only get by paying close attention. The flashback with archer’s family is one such moment. While Archer’s interpretation is that his parents grew old and they loved him; but it is far from the truth. Through context clues, you can see that Archer’s father was planning to kill Archer at his foster mother’s request. When his father could not go through with it he hung himself. This isn’t blatantly told in the story and the writer is telling us to pay attention. If we don’t pay attention then we miss key points in the story.
The plot seems to point to Ansel being apart of both this fantasy world and the real world. Perhaps he is the author of this story. Perhaps he is a character in someone else’s story. It is interesting the different use of fonts to spread different meanings. For example “Once Upon a Time” is set up in a different front from the rest of the book. What does this mean? My running theory is that when Ansel sleeps in the fantasy world he is awake in the real world and vise versa.
Clearly there is a lot of uncertainty in my interpretation of the book and I’m sure many people understand different things in the story. Let me talk about what I do know about the book. The creative team takes a lot of care in each and every panel.Though it is not my favorite art style, there is not a doubt that it is very well done. The stand out image is when Ansel picks up the phone in the river. The colors change to a blueish hue to imply things are not as they seem. Great work putting a little uneasiness in a scene that plays with our perception of truth.
BOTTOM LINE: A LOT OF POTENTIAL
This book is well thought out and smart. I think this one is stronger than the first issue and will continue to have an upward trajectory. This is a book that you have to focus and pay attention to enjoy the story. Read it once, read it twice, and enjoy the depth that the creative team has put in! I’m sure to follow it to the next issue and see what happens to Ansel and his friends. 4 out of 5 stars for Folklords #2 by BOOM! Studios.
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There is a lot of subtlety here that you will only get by paying close attention. The flashback with archer’s family is one such moment. While Archer’s interpretation is that his parents grew old and they loved him; but it is far from the truth.