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Sunday, February 16, 2014

Saga Volume 2

Title:
Saga Volume 2







ISBN:
9781607066927


Price:
$14.99


Publisher/Year:
Image, 2013


Artist: Fiona Staples


Writer:
Brian K. Vaughan


Collects:
Saga #7-12





Rating:
4/5





Saga
Vol. 1 left off on a completely new direction for the book. Not to say I didn’t
enjoy the first volume ─ I loved it ─ but I was a bit wary of how the next
volume would proceed. Without spoilers, Vaughan shifted both the location and
cast of the story, and those had been the most working elements present. But
not to worry. Saga Vol. 2 picks up where the first volume left off in stride,
and Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples weave another fantastic tale, without
losing the minuscule character moments that kept readers enthralled the first
time around.





In
Volume 2 we’re treated to the same illustrious cast from before. Marko, Alana,
Hazel, The Will, Lying Cat, Prince Robot IV, The Stalk, Izabel, and newcomers
Gwendolyn, Barr, Klara, Slave Girl, and D. Oswald Heist are all beautiful in
their own way. Let us not forget that we’re only twelve issues into this story,
and I’m already capable of discussing these characters by name. You know how
you see a movie, and then when you tell someone about it, you say, “Yeah, Emma
Stone’s character was fantastic.” Well, if Emma Stone played Izabel in the Saga
movie, we would call her Izabel.





In
the last review, I highlighted the previous major characters, so now I’ll go
into the new ones. Barr and Klara, Marko’s parents, provide some interesting
changes to the series construction, as they serve mainly to flip the
three-person familial element upside down. Barr is something special, though,
and his slow-burn bonding with Alana is something to think about, even after
reading. Izabel, introduced in the last volume as a trash-talking teenage
ghost, is probably my favorite human character ─ Lying Cat, waddup ─ and if you
need a laugh, she’s there for it. Slave Girl, I presume, will be explored
further in the next volume, as will D. Oswald Heist, though their brief arcs
are nothing to disparage. All in all, Vaughan exceeds at what he did so well in
volume one: building characters with enough hilarity and sadness, and with
which we can’t help but empathize.





Fiona
Staples is even better in volume 2. She was fantastic in volume 1, don’t get me
wrong, but a lot of that story revolved around introducing these characters and
opening up this fantastical world to the reader. In Volume 2, she gets to
stretch her style a little more, and an increase in action and mind-bending
twists allow for a bigger showcase of her diverse talents. Staples’ lengthy
arsenal is her biggest strength. There’s an anthropomorphic mouse and seal that
are adorable. There are demons with upside down heads that are chilling. She
does these transitions seamlessly, all while creating facial structures that
endow characters with gritty emotions, and it’s all done with absolute
perfection.





The
only nitpick would be the last collected issue. No spoilers, but it’s
underwhelming, and I was left a bit confused as to why Vaughan chose that
direction. The series is taking a hiatus between volumes, so it was odd to see
issue 12 focuses on a character we’ve never even been one-on-one with. The
cliffhanger is solid, though, and I am excited to see where it goes.





Like
the last volume, Saga Vol. 2 is a must buy. Yes, it’s not kid-friendly, and
some images are incredibly NSFW, but there is nothing like Saga on the stands.
The epic storytelling of Star Wars, the comedy of Thursday night NBC, and the
subtle brilliance that made Y: The Last Man and Ex Machina something to talk
about. Why would you not buy it? Go! Now! Buy it, man. Jeez, why are you still
listening to me?

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