Review – Jim Henson’s Labyrinth 30th Anniversary Special (BOOM! Studios)

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Publisher: Archaia, an imprint of BOOM! Studios
Writers: Jonathan Case, Cory Godbey, Gustavo Duarte, Ted Naifeh & Adrianne Ambrose, and Adam Smith
Artists: Daniel Bayliss, Cory Godbey, Gustavo Duarte, Kyla Vanderklugt, and Jeff Stokely
Release Date: 10th August, 2016

It has been 30 years since we were introduced to Sarah, the selfish teenager who wished that her baby brother would just disappear. When the Goblin King Jareth kindly obliges her, Sarah sets out on a quest to the realm of the Labyrinth to rescue him and, along the way, herself too. She encounters many strange companions who join her in the quest and it is these supporting characters who this collected comic orbits around.

Collecting the majority of the Labyrinth comics from the Free Comic Book Day releases, this collection transports the reader back to that all-too familiar, magical world. The collected stories reintroduce the reader to the amazing characters from the film like the brave (but extremely hairy) Knight Sir Didymus and his trusted steed Ambrosius, Hoggle, and the wonderfully scary (but extremely kind) Ludo.

The stories are set before and after the movie, with some tales fleshing out what happened to the band of misfits who helped Sarah in her quest, and others digging into the moments just before the events of the movie. The wealth of creative talent on display here is staggering, and the offerings of Corey Godbey, Jeff Stokely and Benjamin Dewey are a joy to read. However, for me, there are two stand out stories in the book that deserve special praise.

“Gone Fishing” by Gustavo Durate is a masterpiece of subtle storytelling, using minimal text and art to convey the story, and “Rock Solid Friendship” by Adam Smith and Kyla Vanderklugt is a beautifully crafted piece about bullying and finding support where you least expect it which is guaranteed to hit you right in the feels.

This is a truly stunning companion to the film and a fitting celebration of its 30th Anniversary. An absolute must-have for all Labyrinth fans.

Rating: 5/5.

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The writer of this piece was: John Patterson
John Tweets from @jpeg37

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