Based on a retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Fashion Beast follows Doll in her discovery of success, and the lengths to which she will go to maintain it.
Although not necessarily something that would be considered ‘horror’ in the classical sense, Fashion Beast does an amazing job of exploring what people are capable of talking themselves into – and the abuses they can justify – for the sake of achieving their own goals.
Set in what might be considered an alternate history, where war and its fallout are taking a toll on the population, Fashion Beast follows Doll on her journey into the ugly and debased world of the fashion industry, where even the most beautiful things are tainted by the taint of human debasement.
Doll’s experiences are vividly expressed in Johnson’s adaption of Moore’s writing, and both the beauty and horror of the world in which she lives is captured by McLaren’s vivid and sordid illustrations.
This is not a happy story, by any means. But it manages to generate such a sense of pathos that, even in its portrayal of the ongoing degradation of almost everything good in this world, there’s still a degree of enjoyment to be had in reading through to the end. And, really, what else could you want from a story?