Friday 2 August 2013

Saga, Vol. 2, reviewed by Stephen Theaker

Saga, Vol. 2 (Image Comics, tpb, 152pp) continues a comic that has been outstanding from the very first issue. Writer Brian K. Vaughn and artist Fiona Staples are producing a science fantasy space opera that, for this reader at least, felt like Star Wars for adults – and this volume is very adult indeed, including towards the end the fellatio and ejaculations that caused such consternation at the Comixology offices! They are displayed on the television screen face of Prince Robot IV, one of many pursuing Marko (from the moon of Wreath) and Alana (from the planet Landfall), starcrossed lovers with a brand new baby (who narrates the series), across the galaxy. Bounty hunters are on the way too, once they’ve wrapped up their own storylines, but first to catch up with the couple in this book are the paternal grandparents, horns and all. They’re under the impression that their son has been kidnapped – because why else would he go on the run with one of the “evil fucks with the wings”? – and so they sold the house to buy themselves teleportation devices.

I thought this was fantastic. It’s a bit saltier in places (double meaning intended) than I really enjoyed (just out of a general embarrassment over the sweaty stuff), and a storyline about child prostitution was so horrible that it threatened to overwhelm the rest of the comic. But the art is spectacular, the story always fascinating, the relationships significant and often touching, even when they involve bad people like bounty hunter The Will and his Lying Cat. In this volume we see how the romance causing all the trouble began, which features a surprising twist on the meet-cute. We see how peppy Alana was before she became part of the galaxy’s most wanted couple, and see how their relationship grew out of sharing books. That’s a good place to start: Mrs Theaker and I got together after sharing a copy of Discourse on the Method, both being broke in our first days at university. And yesterday I was sharing Saga with her, downloading the first few issues to her Kindle Fire, because I reckon she’ll love the series as much as I do.—Reviewed by Stephen Theaker

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