Ryan Thomason

Image Comics – Saga, spins a tale that is worth every second of your time

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Why did I wait so long to finally get around to reading Saga? When I finally picked up all three trades (Thank you Image Comics for providing them for this review) for Saga so that I can be caught up for the big return come Issue #19, I realized why everyone kept talking about Saga for the past year. Saga, without a doubt is now one of my top 3 favorite comic runs. Perhaps of all time. I know, I know. It’s a bold statement, I tend to make them (bold statements that is) from time to time. But Saga is essentially that, a bold statement that deserves your attention.

saga issue one

Writer: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist: Fiona Staples
Publisher: Image Comics
Get Caught up!: Saga TPB Vol. 01, Saga TPB Vol. 02, Saga TPB Vol. 03

Brian Vaughan has been working on the basic concept of this comic since he was a kid. Like everyone in our generation, he was a Star Wars fan and ended up creating his own a galaxy far, far way. It wasn’t until he became a father, with his second child that the main characters in the story came to being, Alana and Marko. Two beings from races that seem to be facing an eternal galaxy wide war against each other. Alana is from Landfall, the largest planet in the galaxy, Marko of Wreath – Landfall’s moon. They fall in love while Marco is enslaved on a planet called Cleave, Alana a guard in the prison. Falling in love when they should be killing each other doesn’t sit well with…anybody. After giving everyone the finger and following their own path, as twisted and wrought with pain, confusion, pleasure and savagery Saga is very much a page turner. The little narration pieces by Hazel, their daughter (narrating from the far future it seems) adds so much intrigue as to why she is the one telling the story.

It’s more than a page turner though, I didn’t want the story to end. I started reading the first volume and before I knew it. I had waved all things away and couldn’t pull myself back into our reality until I finished Volume 3. Saga is very much a powerfully built story that devlivered to me on so many levels. First, as a parent and husband. Saga is the story of a family on the run, from bounty hunters such as the bad ass The Stalk or The Will. Down to a royal who just got back from a two year tour in hell that ended with the biggest surprise attack in military history on his forces. Oh, that royals name is Prince Robot IV, he has a TV for a head and a arm that can morph into a blaster. He’s…awesome. Everyone in the comic so far is nothing but pure awesome. Yes, even the guys you’re supposed to hate. The story is so intricate, so powerful, so captivating that you’re spellbound. Part of that has to do with the artwork as well.

Fiona Staples delivers an insanely high quality in her artwork. I heard she’s not a fan of drawing things mechanical, so a lot of her work is organic in look, which suits the advanced technological capacity of the story. In essence to me, at the highest and deepest level of science it is beautiful in it’s simplicity and natural beauty. Things become organic, it’s not all sharp and hard edges. So seeing things drawn in such a way makes complete sense to me. Finoa’s artwork adds such a dynamic element to the story that I can’t picture anyone else’s style being used for Saga. She simply nails it, it’s just so wonderful to take in.

Saga is very much for someone that is mature enough to handle the material. It’s bloody. It’s got adult circumstances. It’s two parents that made a baby together in the middle of a bloody and terrible war between their races. If you are a parent (whether human or pet) it adds that extra layer. That knowing what it’s like to love something so small, so fragile, so in need of your complete protection. I laughed hard when Alana thought she broke Hazel because the belly button/cord leftover fell out. It’s just little first born parenting fears that we all know and can mutually relate to, no matter where in the galaxy you live.

The first three volumes are out right now, you can order physical copies to be delivered by clicking the links I put in above. Issue number 19 releases next week, and I so can’t wait to get back into this story. If there was one comic run that I had to say you must purchase above all others, it is Saga. As an extra bit of knowledge, Brian Vaughan wrote Saga with every bit of intention that it will only ever be confined within the pages of a graphic novel. This story is purposely written to be too expensive for TV and too intricate for a movie franchise. You can see it in every page that this is where Saga belongs, and as I’ve tried to impress on you enough already.

It. Is. So. Worth. It.

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