Dark Tales: The Snow Queen—A Graphic Novel

dark tales the snow queen a graphic novel cover
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Art: 8/10

Good adaptation

Feels like it could have been a bit more visually distinctive at points

Comic Info

Comic Name: Dark Tales: The Snow Queen—A Graphic Novel

Publisher: Canterbury Classics

Writer: Hans Christian Anderson

Artist: Emilie Majarian

Release Date: 2018

dark tales the snow queen a graphic novel emilie majarian

The creepy Snow Queen…

A demon crafting a mirror capable of showing the darkness in the world finds his mirror shattered…and the glass shards corrupting those in whom they lodged.  Gerda and Kay were destined to be together from childhood, but when Kay has a shard lodge in his eye and in his heart, Kay becomes cold.  Kay’s coldness drives Gerda away, but also makes Kay the target of the evil Snow Queen.  Whisked away in the night, Gerda finds herself on an epic quest to find and rescue Kay…but can even she melt the coldness in his heart?

Written by Hans Christian Anderson, Dark Tales:  The Snow Queen—A Graphic Novel is a fantasy comic book adaptation.  Published by Canterbury Classics, the book adapts Han Christian Anderson’s 1844 classic story originally published in New Fairy Tales:  First Volume—Second Collection and is illustrated by Emilie Majarian.

The Snow Queen was always a great story, and I was kind of crushed when Disney chose to loosely adapt it as Frozen.  By making Frozen, it was different enough from the source material, but those not familiar with the original story might feel other “Snow Queen” adaptations were simply copying the insanely popular Frozen (which does credit “The Snow Queen”).  It is nice to see a solid adaptation of “The Snow Queen” and it continues to make me with for a true, good film adaptation.

dark tales the snow queen a graphic novel art emilie majarian polar bear

…this is when the art really works

The story is rather progressive in that the hero is a young girl rescuing a boy…which reverses the typical prince rescuing the princess storyline.  It is oddly divided with the opening sequence with the demon and the mirror which really isn’t linked to the Snow Queen or her tale, but a means to have Kay turn away from Gerda and fall under the Snow Queen’s spell.  It has typical “hero’s quest” type moments where Gerda faces moments where escape seems impossible, but she excels…and there of course is a happy ending.

The adaptation is pretty straight forward and follows the story through all its weirdness and turns.  While it feels like areas could be expanded and some areas could be condensed, the story decides to remain true to Anderson’s vision and that is a worthy decision.  Since it is based on a short story, the whole graphic novel is a quick read.

The art is simple, and I enjoy Emilie Majarian’s art.  It does feel however that it needs to go a bit more one direction or the other.  The facial art or the characters doesn’t seem to match the style and look of the rest of the designs and background art.  It needs to be a bit softer and more whimsical in nature (the actual Snow Queen does appear right).  I like the storyboarding and pacing of the story as well.

Dark Tales:  The Snow Queen is a nice “seasonal” read that has all of the oddness that made Hans Christian Anderson stories a bit darker and grimmer than some of the other fairy tales (or at least the toned down fairy tales that exist today).  I would be interested to see Majarian tackle something else, and I’d always be happy to see more Anderson’s work.

Related Links:

Dark Tales:  The Call of Cthulhu—A Graphic Novel

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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