Volume 1: What Fables does for fairy tales, Kill Shakespeare does with the greatest writer of all time. This dark take on the Bard pits his greatest heroes (Hamlet, Juliet, Othello Falstaff) against his most menacing villains (Richard III, Lady Macbeth, Iago) in an epic adventure to find and kill a reclusive wizard named William Shakespeare.
Presented as the first half of a longer story, this volume features an intriguing concept: what if Shakespeare's major characters coexisted in a magical land, so that easily misled young Hamlet was duped by clever tyrants Richard III and Lady Macbeth until Falstaff enlightened him and they joined a band of rebels led by Juliet? And what if Shakespeare was considered a wizard, lurking behind the scenes, with ultimate magical power residing in his quill pen? A fantastic world containing this swarm of vivid individuals should be a wonderful basis for a story. Unfortunately, so far, the comic has been a fairly routine sword and sorcery adventure. McCreery and Del Col's script doesn't make the characters, with the exception of the irrepressible Falstaff, especially distinctive; their dialogue is standard heroic comics talk, sprinkled with a few "thee"s and "thou"s. Likewise, Belanger's art is adequate clean and easy to follow but nothing special.