Vixens' Keep |
by Mark Wallace
"It's a man's world" is a dictum that Captain Rose will not accept, and a challenge she cannot refuse.
That's good, because she not only doesn't live in man's world, she and her anthropomorphic friends live in the fantasy world of Warthaven. Captain Rose d'Orr is a talking female fox, and sponsor of a school for female warriors.
Rose and her cast in Vixens' Keep grew naturally out of the Society for Creative Anachronism and the primary sport of this fascinating organization, simulated Medieval sword and shield combat. She began as a comic strip for SCA newsletters poking "gentle fun at many ... aspects of the SCA." Vixens' Keep is an anthology of three stories originally published in four- or six-page episodes, and a labor of love.
For those who equate "a labor of love" with "she's got a nice personality," Rose, Alix, Lorelei and Maya have among the most well-defined female personalities in comic books, an incredible feat since their creator is a man.
Furthermore, this is much more a story of relationships than of physical combat, and one not scarred by the usual soap opera cliches of "steamy, illicit sex," back-stabbing and petty jealousy. Vixens' Keep is a well-crafted, entertaining comic book. It's a shame some hard-core comics fans will ignore it because its funny animal kid stuff.
It's a greater shame that some will also pass it over because the art is, at first, amateurish. Less than half way through this collection, that same art becomes very nice indeed.
Many fans of Bone, Uncle Scrooge and "funny" animals will shamelessly enjoy Vixens' Keep.