Written by: Drew Crowder Art by: Morgan Rae Myers Colours by: Rob Torres Published by: Hashtag Comics
Issue 1 of Tailwands is the beginning of Kaya’s Journey – the Kaya in question is a precocious, young mouse; one that just happens to be endowed with magic. Tailwands is a simple tale, once of simple, child friendly art and a story that is non-threatening, easy paced and again aimed squarely at a younger audience. The characters are easy on the eye, the backgrounds and structures are all well enough rendered. Once you take into consideration who the target audience is, you can let go of some of the issues that you would normally take with such a tale. Issues such as plot, development and the lack of any dramatic moments. The characters are cute, the plot is very thin and the ending is very gentle.
While there are some nice moments, the interplay between Kaya and her elder brother being chief amongst these, they aren’t sufficient to sustain the overall thrust of the story. While the lack of an evil antagonist worked perfectly for A.A. Milne, it is a really tough act to pull off in sequential stories. Without dramatic tension Drew focuses the developing story of Kaya. A few of the pages are particularly light in terms of content, but over a 42 page book, one where the story could have been told over 28-32 pages, you tend to find filler pages. The opening phase of the book is nicely told, we gain a good overview of the world of Tailwands and of the central character. The mid section feels like a mis-step. We have a widening of the story, of other characters becoming aware of the magical element of Kara – yet this is not capitalized upon in the book. This section meanders and fails to push on from the beginning. As we reach the final phase of the book, we are left with a feel of whimsy, of a mild story that could have packed a greater punch but in the end was something gentle, soft and, unfortunately, unfulfilled. The varied elements of this book could lead on to more interesting realms, the anthropomorphic characters, the use of magic and the rich tapestry of the world of Tailwands has scope to interest but we need more drive than is evidenced in this particular installment.