Lands of Toons
Who Framed Roger Rabbit meets Westworld, but much more family friendly. Lands of Toons is a story that's created by a fan of animation and is for fans of animation. From Walt Disney to Chuck Jones to Don Bluth, Lands of Toons pays homage to the types of stories, themes and characters that each of these entities brought to life.
While it is absolutely family friendly, Lands of Toons offers up plenty for the savvy comic reader as well. Most prominently we're dealing with toons that are 'aware' and very much living in a land where consequences are all too real. Real in that if they don't get the ratings they disappear, literally.
The book is a mash up of the toons many of us grew up with (Looney Toons etc) and societal commentaries with a Truman Show-esque lens. Scripts are written out and the toons have their parts to play ... and they must play them well. As aware as they are they are in the dark about quite a bit in terms of where they are and why they're there. A very blunt 'follow the instructions to survive' sign greets our two main characters upon their awakening in this new place. Very quickly they find themselves in what compares to a monotonous day to day grind. Their survival depends on it. As the story moves along the natural questioning of things comes into play and the real adventure begins. The story moves from every day plodding to see the sun rise again to a much deeper and involved trying to figure out the meaning of it all.
The hijinks are delightfully cartoony and the art delivers them wonderfully. The images on the pages fit exactly what you think when you read 'toon' in the title. Sometimes it even adds an extra layer to the multi-faceted story being told by making you wonder how you can be looking at the images that you are while thinking as hard as you are at what is being presented. The style lends to the friendliness to all accessibility of the book but also drives home the deepness of the story.
This was an excellent surprise upon reading. I wasn't expecting something so fun yet so real at the same time. Definitely worth your time.