Pick of the Week
What did the
- Pick of the Week - 06.12.2013 - Thor: God of Thunder #9
- Pick of the Week - 06.04.2013 - Astro City #1
- Pick of the Week - 05.29.2013 - The Wake #1
- Pick of the Week - 05.22.2013 - Daredevil #26
- Pick of the Week - 05.15.2013 - Edgar Allen Poe's The Fall of the House of Usher #1
Art by Fiona Staples
Cover by Fiona Staples
Size: 32 pages
This is getting to be challenging. Checking the records, Saga has garnered Pick of the Week status for issues 1, 2, 4, and now 6. That’s a 67% win rate. Good for them. Good for Vaughan, Staples, and Image Comics. For us? For you? That depends. Because what is left to say about this, other than, apparently, we were so starved for new and exciting content that when Brian Vaughan came back to us with something like this, we were floored. But the thing is, Saga doesn’t seem to be reinventing the wheel. It’s not like I’m reading this and thinking that there’s never been anything like it, and after Saga, everything will change. That’s not really happening. I just finished the last page, and thought, “that was one solid comic book, and I had a lot of fun reading it, and I would very much like to read more now.”
I knew I was in trouble when Saga #6 delivered the following line:
“Listen to my voice boy. I aim to murder you… right after I murder everything you ever loved.”
That’s a Preacher quality line right there, and it took the character who said it, The Will, right up another bunch of notches on the “formidable foe” scale. If he really even is a foe. We learned before that he’s got a soft spot for kids, and he’s chasing after new parents with a kid. There are levels upon levels working here!
From there we were once again treated to the slightly odd and odder conglomeration of characters on this massive chase throughout a universe that is not ours. They delivered on the Rocketship Forest, which feels like a concept absolutely no one has used before. They’re setting up rivalries among different sets of characters, as well as personal tension among allies. Because being new parents is tough enough without multiple groups chasing after you, and being from different sides of the tracks on top of that. The heady mix of all these things, all strong, makes up for what might be the strongest new series we’ve seen in a very long time.
Let’s talk about that cast of characters. I can’t think of a single one that isn’t interesting, right down to the baby, who hasn’t actually said anything in real time. It’s easy to forget, she’s telling us about all this after the fact. Her narration adds crucial plot and context. Marko and Alana are instantly recognizable as people we know, maybe even people we are, regardless of horns and wings. Prince Robot IV is a character I could read a spin off series about already, and I want to know just what drives The Will very much indeed. There is so much going for Saga, and we are just getting started with this. At this point, I’d hazard to say that if I could pick only one ongoing monthly comic book, I’d go with this one, solely because I have no idea what I’m going to get, and I love that.
I’ve said for a very long time that Brian K. Vaughan is the master of the single issue, in a world where there are few of those kinds of masters left. While he got me with the above line, he won me over this week for the last page. We think the heroes have made their brave escape, but it turns out that they were followed, and because in this world they have to deal with teleportation, the wooden rocketship is invaded, and a fight breaks out. Pretty standard, right? Then the last page kicks in, and things get more complicated. It’s a perfect example of what makes Vaughan so good. He’s always raising the stakes, and the pieces are constantly moving. You put any of these issues down, and you’re fiending for the next chapter. It’s what a comic is supposed to do.
Artist Fiona Staples said that she hopes to draw every issue of this ongoing series. I know we’re only six issues in, but it’s such a good sign that you’ve got a creative team who wants to keep going. Indefinitely. They’ve created a world, and right now, it’s the hard stuff, where they’re setting all sorts of pieces in place, and before long, they’re going to start getting knocked over left and right. That’ll be the fun part, which means we’re not even in the fun part yet. How exciting is that?
Not just murder everyone you love, but everything. That’s rough.