While reading American Born Chinese, by Gene Luen Yang, I…
Brian K. Vaughn is one of those comicbook writers whose name I cannot speak without emitting a dreamy sigh after it. This is similar to the way I said “Fonzie” when I was ten. I may have to start sighing after I say the name Fiona Staples too, because she’s responsible for the fantastically dreamy art that accompanies Saga Volume 1.
Oftentimes when you start reading a new comicbook series there seems to be a lot of WTFness as you get your feet under you trying to figure out the rules of this new world you’ve entered. There was absolutely no WTF-period in Saga at all. From page one you are grounded and from there the story is off like a shot.
The story opens with Alana giving birth to Marko’s daughter in the back of a garage while he assists her. Their “oh she has your wing buds” and “oh she has her father’s horns” is interrupted by some sort of ambush. Within moments of giving birth the couple is on the run. See, they’re from opposite sides of a galactic war and it seems the planet they are on doesn’t take kindly to fraternizing with the enemy.
As Alana and Marko search for a safe place we get to know bounty-hunter-like Freelancers and Prince Robot IV who seems human from the neck down but instead of a head he has a sort of tv-screen/monitor. We also get to know about Horrors and ghosts and a little bit about this endless war.
We learn that Alana’s will stop at nothing to protect her new family, even using violence. Marko’s a bit more of a softy and wants to stick to his word and be honorable. As the two head for the Rocketship Forest, they pick up a spooky babysitter for their daughter who appears as a pink ghost who is missing half her body.
It’s hard to explain but amazing to read. I can’t remember the last time I have been so instantly captivated by a new series. Perhaps it was Brian K. Vaughn’s Y: The Last Man, about what happens on Earth when all the men suddenly die.
While the story in Y: The Last Man is fantastic, the art in Saga is amazing. So amazing, in fact, that I’m totally coveting Alana’s bluish-greenish black hair style. It is awesome. Probably the best comicbook heroine hair since Ramona Flowers. And that’s saying a lot.
Saga Volume 1 is so good that I went in search of the next single issue (rather than wait for the next six or seven issues to be collected into a paperback), and was absolutely crushed to realize it hasn’t been released yet. Damn.