Hopefully we enjoy Saga #18, because this is the last we’ll be getting of the series until March. Is it good?
Saga #18 (Image Comics)
Hey Saga lovers, if you’re reading this you must be on the fence about the story and are wondering if its turned around in some way. Or, you’re a new reader who is a fool and should go back and read our previous reviews, because this ain’t a good place to start. Since this is the end of the latest story arc you’d best go back and catch up. If you’re stubborn, well fine, I’ll clue you in: Marko and Alana are two different aliens whose races have warred for quite awhile. They banged and now have a kid which has created a stir amongst their respective race leaders. Meanwhile, Marko’s ex is after him, an assassin named The Will has been hired to kill them, and a monitor-headed alien is on a quest to kill them himself. Fun times. All three come to a head in this issue.
Eye gouge for the win.
Writer Brian K. Vaughan organizes this issue into three parts; the first being a conflict between Lying Cat and Izabel, the second being a conflict between Marko, Alana and Marko’s ex and the third tying up loose ends and setting up for what’s to come. The first conflict masterfully reveals an aspect of Lying Cat we didn’t know and helps develop the character nicely. It’s a subtle touch but it works, considering how few pages Lying Cat gets. The second doesn’t reveal as much, but gives us a touch of Marko’s undying love we’ve come to expect. The rest of the issue feels a bit tacked on, like those pre credit text sequences that tell us where the hero ended up. We check in with the journalists and where they might be going, The Will’s state, and finally Alana and her child. Vaughan hits major beats to increase anticipation for the next issue, but it’s done in an inorganic sort of way. It’s the pacing of these events that irks me, but at the end of the day each segment is still good.
Fiona Staples continues to amaze in the art department, with exceptional facial expressions and blocking. I will say I’m always a tad taken out of the book when it comes to the characters amongst the scene. The backgrounds sometimes look like they were drawn separately like you’d see in an old school animated film. Conversely, it makes the characters pop a bit, which is a neat touch. Ultimately this is a soap opera of a comic so making the characters more focused on the page is a plus.
Lying Cat is like some kind of deity.
Is It Good?
Another great issue with a satisfying conclusion to something we’ve been awaiting for months. Things are tied up a little shoddily for the next arc in March, but they satisfy in their own respects.