Jeremy Whitley and M. Goodwin’s “Princeless” #4 continues to be as charming as humanly possible with the humor and delicious warmth found in the first three issues. This week, the book sets the stage for Adrienne’s further adventures while wrapping up the first mini-series.
In the conclusion of “Princeless'” first story arc, Adrienne and her new cohort-in-potential-princess-rescuing, Bedelia the blacksmith, fight off the king’s guards and escape a burning building. When safely away, Adrienne introduces Bedelia to her dragon, Sparky, and the three set off together on a quest to rescue Adrienne’s sister Angelica, nicely setting up the second series. The issue ends with a glimpse of Angelica and the challenges the trio may face in the next storyarc.
“Princeless” has been absolutely loaded with energy and enthusiasm and issue #4 is no exception. Whitley’s writing is smart and funny, but full of heart with just enough satire to make a great read for all ages. It’s a rare combination and a treat to see it executed so effortlessly.
Goodwin’s art bursts from the pages making for a friendly and fun book. It’s a perfect fit for kids and adults alike, full of vibrant eye-popping color with expressive, well-considered and carefully designed characters. However, the art never forgets its primary function — deliver a clear and easy to follow story — and Goodwin accomplishes it with ease.
The major criticism of “Princeless” deals mostly with the fact that Adrienne doesn’t actually rescue any princesses during the first storyarc. However, looking at the mini-series as a whole, Adrienne does save one princess during the course of “Princeless”: herself. What could be more empowering and important? This issue clearly sets up the second mini-series and the structure going forward — one princess is set to be rescued in each arc. “Princeless” #4 also establishes the excellent princess rescue team of Adrienne, sidekick Bedelia and trusty dragon steed Sparky.
In the end, this series serves as an excellent springboard for what I hope will be many more issues of “Princeless.” It’s a book overflowing with charm, humor, warmth and smarts. I simply cannot wait to see what Whitley and Goodwin have in store for these characters moving forward.