First off, Happy Thanksgiving to the Americans who celebrate! Most of y’all are probably busy either preparing for the night ahead or already eating with family and friends. I, for one, have been eyeing the turkey that’s been marinating in carbonated soda for a day and a half. Also, considering this is a scheduled post, it is more than likely I’ve gone off to cook and/or bake stuff for the weekend. Omnomnom, food.
Anyway, speaking of family-related things…
I had intended to write mini-reviews for graphic novels that continue a series. I’d done one of Saga as an overview a while back, but I just couldn’t resist doing one of the second volume, because things just got BETTER. Also, I loved this volume much more, and when was a better time to write a review than on a day where I’m thankful for my family?
SAGA, VOL. 2
written by Brian K. Vaughn, illustrated by Fiona Staples
Image Comics, 2013
Graphic novel, space opera
Rated: / 5 cookies
SAGA is a sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the universe. Thanks to her star-crossed parents Marko and Alana, newborn baby Hazel has already survived lethal assassins, rampaging armies, and horrific monsters, but in the cold vastness of outer space, the little girl encounters her strangest adventure yet… grandparents.
The end of the first volume gave quite a bit of character introduction and prominent storylines: Hazel’s grandparents show up at the very end, The Will is trying to save a girl from a sex trafficking planet (and mourning the loss of his ex-lover), and Prince Robot IV is on the hunt for Marko and Alana, much like every other person in the frelling universe. Volume 2 has Hazel recounting the very moments where her parents fall in love, as well as continuing the story of what happened after Marko and Alana encounter Marko’s parents. Talk about trying to please the in-laws.
What I do love about this series is that it has the perfect amount of romance, tear-jerking tragedy, suspense, and humor all wrapped within a couple hundred pages of narrated illustration. It’s really difficult to find this kind of balance, and I think Saga has been able to hit every single one of my “kudos” points in my mental story rubric.
From the meet-cute to the present predicament (which resulted in Hazel being born and the couple going on the run), Marko and Alana have the most adorable interactions. It’s easy to see that they’re supposed to be on opposite sides of the war, yet I can’t help but love their Romeo and Juliet-esque coupling. I don’t even like the story of Romeo and Juliet, but on occasion I find the star-crossed lovers theme pretty epic.
Then you have the randomest shmat like this happening in the middle of a romantic scene and the mood is quickly over, replaced by laughable–and a little disturbing–images. I can tell you right now that reading Saga on a train WILL result in stares from strangers. I couldn’t even say how many times I’ve chuckled loudly after reading a panel.
All in all, though, I feel like this is the next comics series I’m going to try to peddle to friends and family members. Not so much my writing students, ’cause, ya know, it’s pretty far from age appropriate. BUT OMG THIS SERIES IS AMAZING.
5 out of 5 cookies!