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De: Tales

Writer: Fabio Moon & Gabriel Ba
Artist: Fabio Moon & Gabriel Ba
Comics Waiting Room, August 2006

I've had the privilege to see the evolution of these two incredibly talented artists up close, thanks in part to my friendship with Brian Johnson of Khepri Comics. From their earliest small press efforts on, where they showed so much amazing potential, it was clear that these Brazilian twins had the talent to be huge stars. And now, they have begun to get out and show that talent, with such efforts as Ursula, Smoke and Guns, and Casanova. However, they fully come into their own with the publication of DeTALES.

The subtitle of the book is "Stories From Urban Brazil," and while that sounds like it could be pretty wild, the artists focus their tales on the quieter, subtler moments of life. Many of the pieces tackle the subject of love, whether love in bloom or love that failed to take spark. "Late For Coffee," the best story in the book is not only incredibly sweet as it shows the building of chemistry between a man and woman, but it packs a powerful gut punch for an ending that makes you want to choke out a tear. It's Eisner-caliber work and could easily find itself nominated next year.

The duo swaps duties back and forth throughout the book, one writing while the other draws, and combines on many others, but the amazing thing is that there's never an appreciable dip in quality regardless of how the individual story is put together. And because that work is so consistent and so very good, I can recommend this wonderful book without reservation, particularly if you're seeking something to give the non-traditional comics reader. (Marc Mason)

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