As a black female comic fan, I’m excited to get around to reading this. As a fan of humor and good stories, I’m excited to read this.
“In the midst of a comic book world that feature the dark, grim alleys of Gotham and the ever-growing list of Hulks, Princeless is a brightly-colored and often hilarious four-issue mini that follows the adventures of Princess Adrienne and her trusty pet dragon, Sparky. And boy–do they have adventures.
Whitley (writer) and Goodwin (artist)’s Princeless offers a fresh and literally bright view of the young, female heroine of color and her struggle to create her own sense of agency in a world where princesses wait for princes to rescue them. Princeless comments on the various issues facing women in comic books today, from impractical outfits juxtaposed by slapstick humor and jokes that entertain all ages.
Princeless is a fast read, not only because of its target audience of young girls, but also because of its exciting pacing and plot. Adrienne, trapped in her own castle, breaks free and decides to rescue all her other sisters from the clutches of tower guardians. She develops her own sense of her world, through her eyes, while questioning the old traditions that play out over and over again in comic books and popular media, such as, “Why do girls have to be rescued by men?” and “Why should a woman’s armor have to show cleavage or stomach?”
Adrienne’s story is not hers alone, however. Like any hero in a story, she is joined by a large cast of family and friends, including the half-dwarf, half-human, Bedelia; her brother, Devin, who is more interested in poetry and plays than he is in swords and combat; and her trusty animal sidekick, the dragon Sparky. Whitley crafts a good story in that each of these characters struggles against the norms that are set out from them, with Adrienne’s strong personality at the forefront of the story.
Mia Goodwin’s wonderful art also enhances the story, adding layers of depth and nuance to each of the characters. There is never a repetitive or boring panel; each one pops off the page with the same vibrancy and light that the dialogue and thought-boxes offer. While the art is cartoon in nature, it highlights Adrienne’s adventure as a young girl: optimistic and bright, filled with wonderful friends and faces.
With its excellent writing and stellar art, Princeless is a must-read. It’s no surprise that Princeless is up for several comic book awards this year, including the 2012 Eisner Awards and the 2012 Glyph Comics Awards.
As a special treat, Racebending.com not only has a review of Princeless, but an interview with its writer, Jeremy Whitley, as well. He spoke to us about the many layers and depths of Princeless, offering insight into his writing style and the background behind Adrienne’s compelling story and her future in comic book stores.”