The Phoenix Weekender – The Pie Thief
The Phoenix Comic hits my letterbox every Friday. The mostly subscription only comic is my Saturday morning treat reading, a fabulous kids’ comic that everyone, aged 3-103 should be reading. Inside each issue you’ll find comics from Jamie Smart, Neill Cameron, Adam and Lisa Murphy, Lorenzo Etherington, Joe List, Jess Bradley, Dan Boultwood and so many more. Basically a go to list of great Brit comic makers.
You can subscribe here, and you should be able to find copies at your local comic shop.
I used to do this as a regular weekly rundown of the comic, but seeing as getting this out weekly isn’t working so well right now, I’m concentrating on individual strips in a little more depth.
(EDIT – 19th March – Thanks to Dave Shelton for pointing out that I spelt Faz Choudhury’s name wrongly throughout this article. I wholeheartedly apologise to Faz and am just going to take myself out the back and give myself a beating with old 90s Marvel comics with the special shiny covers since they hurt all the more!)
This week, we’re looking at Faz Choudhury’s The Pie Thief…. this exact pie thief in fact…
Well, this one’s been promised for quite a while, Faz Choudhury has been working on it for what seems like the longest time. And here we go, starting in Phoenix Comic issue 267. I was going to say something a few weeks back but thought I’d leave it to see where it’s going.
It’s about, well it’s about a young lad who steals a pie. well, that’s how it starts anyway. But that’s just episode one…
But things are never that simple are they? And thank heavens, because boy steals pie, runs off with pie, eats pie just doesn’t seem like that great a tale. Thankfully Choudhury’s comic drops our thief well and truly in it. From the very start there’s a delicious hint of something bigger, as Zeke manages to accidentally get in the way of two rather obvious baddies. And then there’s the carriage door…
From that breakneck start we’re off into the sewers, with just the first hint of something a little weird going on in here, because the rats are just a little bigger than usual… yeah, just a little. There’s a thriving little community down in the sewers it seems and Zeke’s made at home by the Mucks, a wonderfully welcoming family who’ve really managed to make the best of a bad lot.
All in all, there’s a really great sense of a fine strip here. It’s light and it’s fun. And there’s a sense that there’s going to be plenty of development in the storyline to come. There’s also a little hint that Choudhury’s going to sprinkle a little shade amongst the light, as he doesn’t shy away from sadness where it comes to the troubles of the times.
So, yes, wonderful to see The Pie Thief in The Phoenix at last. A light, fun storyline with potential. But the great thing thus far about the strip is seeing Choudhury’s artwork at last. There’s a lightness to it that’s always so lovely to see, and so difficult to pull off. Of particular interest and delight here are the couple of examples of Choudhury using the page so well… just like this….