Saga. one of the best comics in print?


The 19th issue of Brian K. Vaughan’s Saga hit stores and digital outlets last Wednesday.  If you don’t know what Saga is then you have been missing out on a master piece of the genre. Saga is by far the title that I look forward to the most each month. It chronicles the life of ‘Hazel’ a baby born in the first issue with parents who come from opposing sides in a war, and they are from different planets, and are different species. Its like the Romeo and Juliet story arch was dropped in a blender with Star Wars and Lord of the Rings. The story currently follows her mother and father as main characters but there is strong indications that Hazel will become the main focus of the book at some point.

The art is by Fiona Stables and its wonderful. As much as this is a writer driven series (in my opinion) the art work is really excellent with some of the most striking covers I have ever seen, minimal and imposing. The internal book art is really well done and each character is drawn with a real attention to detail with some of the best facial expressions you will find in comics. every environment that we see in this series is well  rendered and stylish.

There are some strange concepts in the book such as the ‘Robot Kingdom’ being filled with television headed people and a character who is a half spider half regular lady, who has a lot of ‘history’ (sexy history) with a pretty normal looking humanoid bounty hunter.

What sets Saga apart from most titles for me at least is that even though its a science fiction story its more interested in character development and motivation. Brian K. Vaughan really does seem to be writing about people he understands rather than the shallow archetypes that many science fiction writers use. Each decision the characters make are about what’s best for them not what drives the plot forward. Its a story that I feel the writer really wants to tell.

As I said earlier Saga is now on issue #19 and with this issue we have rejoined the family quite some time after the last issue, they are hiding out on a little world hoping  that the governments mercenaries don’t find them and trying to keep a low profile while making a living. Even though the issue has no action to speak of it showcases the interplay between the characters wonderfully and I’m sure that we will see some really great plot lines ahead as well as the pretty solid threads that are already open being cast forward.

The other memorable series that Brian K. Vaughan is well known for was ‘Y the Last Man’ a book that I am still reading but it ran for 60 issue. I mention this because if Saga runs as long as Y the last Man then we are only at the start of the story and already its one of the best comic series that I have ever read.

For anyone who wants to jump on board with this title then its worth checking out the collected volumes that are available from all the usual places for around £7 each. Currently there are three volumes in print and Amazon has them all.

Click here for the official Saga Page on the Image comics website.

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