Saga – Book 1 Written by Brian K Vaughan, Illustrated by Fiona Staples (@fionastaples)
Ive put off reading Saga for a while now, not because it has the same name of an over 50’s magazine but the synopsis just was not grabbing me despite some of my favourite authors raving about it on social media.
Please note: I have not read any many graphic novels except marvel stuff. Until doing research for review, I had no idea of any of this-
Telling the story of a family escaping an interplanetary war, SAGA is an ongoing comic book series, released monthly by Image Comics. It has won a Hugo Award, a British Fantasy Award, and multiple Eisner and Harvey Awards. All three volumes of SAGA have reached number one on the New York Times best sellers list, and volume one has been in the top ten for more than seventy weeks. – See more at: https://imagecomics.com/content/view/saga-gets-the-deluxe-treament#sthash.LnEHBF6Y.dpuf
As I had been debating over whether to read comic/graphic book Saga. I was presented with the deluxe hardcover on my amazon recommendations for £24.99 (which is an excellent price for a really good quality hardcover.) I thought I would give it a go and I was blown away by how gripped I was. I devoured it in 5 hours and could easily just read it again.
The narrator is the child of a Alana and Marko, whose families have a hatred for each other similar to the capulets and montages.
“If there was ever a time these two got along, nobody remembers it.”
Alana is winged from the largest planet in the galaxy Landfall whilst horned father Marko is native to Wreath Landfalls only satellite. A multicultural relationship between the two is forbidden, so when Alana helps Marko to escape a day before his execution they become fugitives, Marko get the horn and Alana becomes pregnant. The child is narrating in a commentary style from somewhere in the future, these comments add an emotional contrast to some of the more adult goings on. The language suggests Hazel may still be young , she looks on her parents lovingly but sadly as if missing them, that is not reached by the end of this book (hence i don’t see it as a spoiler.)
So why is this rated M, for mature? Brian & Fiona have not been afraid to explore the possibilities of some sci-fi and fantasy perversity and sexploitation including brothel Sextillion where debauch obscenities are emphasised by some pretty awesome art. Furthermore theres violence portrayed by some gory imagery. I couldn’t help thinking if Tarantino wrote a graphic novel, id expect something like this.
The characters these guys have created are brilliant.
The Stalk, a combination of alien spider and female upper body but with more
The Still (probably my favourite) reminds me a bit of John McClane from die Hard, he’s badass but he does have a conscious and has a sidekick in the shape of a green sphynx that is known as ‘the lying cat’.
And Prince Robot IV, humanlike body with a television head that often shows him thinking some pretty filthy stuff.
There are many other characters that I will leave as a surprise. Yes this is for an adult audience (do not leave it laying around) but these scenes all work within the context and can be at times erotic if cosplay is your thing. (Except maybe for big balls, don’t look.)
Saga has really impressed me, the art of Fiona Staples is exceptional, whilst the storytelling is engaging with just the right balance of everything as well as addressing many struggles within our own society . Highly recoomended.
(I apologise the pics for this post went walkies.)
Published by image comics. Hardback. 504 pages. ISBN13 9781632150783
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