Themed anthologies are in my opinion difficult to pull off. You have to have a strong theme otherwise you run the risk of filling the pages with stories that aren’t very strong. The Fitzroy has a strong theme or really a strong concept and setting. The idea behind this anthology is that it’s 1950’s Britain and a poisonous gas has spread everywhere making it a bit apocalyptic outside. Each creative team takes that setting and crafts their own tale. Some humorous, some grim, but all of them different.
Since there’s only six stories and they’re not very long I will only talk about two of them that I enjoyed so that I don’t spoil the one-shot. The first to talk about is a story about two men on a hot air balloon trying to illegally immigrate out of the country. Immigration is illegal due to the poisonous gas and all, but these two gents are giving it their best show. It doesn’t have any dialogue, but we see that the balloon is dropping and each time they’re forced to get rid of more and more of their supplies. The ending is amusing. The art does all the heavy lifting obviously and it’s an interesting style. It’s a little cartoonish, but there’s something charming about the artwork.
The next tale I would like to mention is called “DIG” and is about a door to door salesman that’s selling cleaning goods. He gets invited into an old lady’s home and the husband kind of shakes him down. There’s a twist here as well, but it’s pretty good. I really enjoyed the art for this one as it looked like comics from the era in which the stories take place.
Overall the stories are all enjoyable and more in line with dark comedy now that I think about it more. I did really enjoy the letters that bookend the book as they are humorous and especially the first letter sets the tone for what’s to follow. This is definitely an idea that could provide more stories and hopefully there will be future editions of the anthology. If you like anthologies, then this is definitely one to check out.
[button btn_url="" btn_color="teal" btn_size="large" btn_style="default" btn_outlined="no" link_target="blank" link_rel="" icon_left="" icon_right=""]Score: 4/5[/button]
The Fitzroy Writers: Various Artists: Various Publisher: Dead Canary Comics Price: £2.49–£4.99 Format: TPB; Print Website