A couple of weeks ago I wrote a piece about serial narratives and while I touched on television, video games, and (of course) writing, I foolishly forgot to mention anything about comics. Comics have used the serialized narrative format for a long time. My aforementioned rise of the serial narrative is, I think, one reasons why web comics have become so popular recently. They are ahead of the curve on video games and the re-emergent serialized novel, and the internet has allowed writers and artists to create and widely share some very interesting stories.
In this new blog column I will share some of the web comics I’ve started following with all of you. Now, while I enjoy web comics like xkcd, the comics I write about here will be driven by story and narrative rather than based on strips. So, let’s get started!
The first of these web comics, and probably my favorite, is The Fox Sister. It is written by Christina Strain, a colorist in the comic book industry, and the art is done by Jayd Aït-Kaci. The story is loosely based on a Korean folk tale of the same name and follows a young woman named Cho Yun-Hee whose family has been killed by a kumiho or nine-tailed fox demon. Yun-Hee grows up to a shaman priestess, and she spends her life pursuing the fox spirit hoping to have the opportunity to kill it. She finds the kumiho working at a missionary church still wearing her older sister’s body but now using the name Min. However, things get complicated when Yun-Hee starts to fall for Alex, a former American soldier who works alongside the kumiho as a missionary and has no idea about her true nature.
I am writing a Young Adult Fantasy that prominently features a kumiho character as well, and I stumbled across this comic while doing research on my own project and trying to see if there were any other writers out there creating stories based on Korean myths. This is one of the few things I could find, which I have to admit I have mixed feelings about. On the one hand, my work is going to be fairly unique in the American market. On the other hand, I think that Korean mythology is quite interesting, and it’s a shame that’s underrepresented. Actually, I think it’s said that mythology outside of the common Western myths and folk tales is underrepresented in fantasy writing for both YA and Adult. But I could write a whole other rant on that…
The Fox Sister is a great story, and it is very well illustrated as well. I would highly recommend this for anyone looking for a new comic to check out.