Comic Book Review: Saga [volume 3]

If you’ve read my review of Volume 1 and Volume 2 of Saga, you know that I’m a little bit obsessed with it. A little bit – haha.

Saga, volume 3 Cover

This volume was no different. I mean, I went out and bought Volume 3 because our library system doesn’t have it yet and I wasn’t going to wait. This guy on Goodreads sums it up pretty well: “This comic is so good it’s starting to piss me off.”

I honestly don’t know the point of this review because I can’t really tell you what happens without potentially spoiling the first two volumes. Honestly, if you have even the smallest interest in getting into comics (and you are open-minded about potentially crude behavior), please check out Saga. It’s funny, imaginative, and amazing. The illustrations are incredible and perfectly match the content of the story. Like, Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples didn’t win a Hugo Award for nothing – they won it for the incredibleness that is Saga.

We, of course, get some new characters in this volume, including the two reporters who are hoping to make their career on the story of Alana and Marko. I’m kind of in love with them. There’s also some drama (when old girlfriends resurface or when some of our friends eat some not-so-friendly fruit). I’m kind of freaking out about how this issues ends and I can barely wait for the next volume; I’m almost tempted to start buying the individual issues because I. need. to. know.

This girl sums up my feelings about the next volume: “I’m sure I’ll be totally fine for the next six months as we await Volume Fo- [LYING]”

Saga, volume 3 geek out

Publication info:

Saga [volume 3]

Written by Brian K. Vaughan; illustrated by Fiona Staples

Published by Image Comics; March 25, 2014

144 pages (paperback)

 

Comic Book Review: The Walking Dead, Volume 3 “Safety Behind Bars”

So far this week, I’ve reviewed the first two volumes of The Walking Dead comics, Days Gone Bye and Miles Behind Us. Today, I’m reviewing the third volume, Safety Behind Bars, which just made me even more obsessed with the comics. I wish I could just buy ALL the volumes and spend several days reading them all, but, alas, there are like 20 volumes and I cannot afford that.

There may be spoilers if you’ve never watched the show, because I don’t know when what happens in the books happens in the show so I can’t warn you. I’ll just say: there are potential spoilers in this review.

The Walking Dead, volume 3 cover

Goodreads Summary:

This volume follows our band of survivors as they set up a permanent camp inside a prison. Relationships change, characters die, and our team of survivors learn there’s something far more deadly than zombies out there: each other.

What I thought:

The group make it into the prison, but outside the snow melts and a handwritten note says “All dead. Do not enter.” Uh oh. In the prison, the group finds four criminals who’ve holed themselves up in the kitchen. Rick decides to go back to the farm and invite Hershel and his children (and Glenn) to stay at the prison; they’ve got plenty of room. What a nice move on Rick’s part; he’s a good dude.

The Walking Dead, volume 3 All Dead

Julie and Chris enter into a suicide pact that goes wrong. Chris shoots just a second too soon and Julie dies but Chris lives. When Tyreese gets to the two of them, he finds his daughter dead, but soon she returns to life as a zombie. This was a previously unknown way to turn and the group realize that they are all infected and should they die, they’d be a zombie. Oh crap.

This prompts Rick to go back to where they buried Shane and kill him again. That’s what you get, Shane!

Back at the prison, Hershel finds his twin daughters, Susie and Rachel, murdered in the barber shop. The group locks up Dexter, the inmate who was convicted for murder. Andrew, convicted for drug dealing, talks to Dexter (it is implied they had a relationship) about getting the guns from the armory and kicking them all out. Andrea is in the laundry room and is attacked by Thomas (convicted for “tax evasion”) and is beaten down by Rick, who introduces the “You Kill You Die” rule. Thomas is eventually shot by Maggie and thrown over the fence. Hershel watches as he is eaten by zombie.

The Walking Dead, volume 3 Susie and Rachel dead

At the end of the volume, Dexter and Andrew threaten Rick and his gang and tell them to “Get the fuck out of my house.”

Well, dang. Just as they think they’ve got a nice place for themselves, they’re kicked out. Apparently, this is not what happens in the show. Again, I don’t know what happens, but I thought this volume was super intense and I enjoyed it quite a bit. The artwork continued to be top notch and super impressive. I can’t wait to see what happens in volume 4!

READ THESE COMICS ALREADY!

Written by Robert Kirkman; illustrated by Charlie Adlard

Have you read The Walking Dead comics? What did you think? Also, can you tell me (spoiler-free if possible), what the differences are between what happened in this volume and the show? 🙂

Comic Book Review: Saga [volume 2]

So if you saw my review of Saga [volume 1] last week, you could probably guess that I LOVED it. Like, A LOT. Like, asdfkl; a lot.

As soon as I finished reading it, I put a hold on Volume 2. I couldn’t wait for it to come in, and when it did, I was so pumped. I flew through the second volume, and I can safely say that I am OBSESSED with this comic. It’s incredible. To show you how much I love it: our library system doesn’t have Volume 3 anywhere, so I went to the comic book store last weekend and bought it. I don’t even own the first two volumes (yet) but I will not wait until the library system has it to read it. I needed it NOW.

Just in case I need to say it again: this comic can be offensive to some people and there may or may not be expletives below.

Saga, volume 2 Cover

I honestly don’t know how to properly describe how much I love this series and why I think you should read it. Remember, it’s kind of offensive: there’s sex scenes, a huge, disgusting scrotum that dangles down from a grotesque giant, and a lot of “bad” behavior. However, there are also several real, mature, unromanticized relationships that are just beautiful (particularly the one between Alana and Marko). And yes, this series is technically sci-fi (with spaceships, aliens, robots, and the like) but the relationships are so genuine and human that you don’t have to be a sci-fi fan like me to enjoy it.

In this volume, our star-crossed lovers continue to search for a safe home for their new family. Their babysitter, a ghost with no legs named Izabel, has been marooned on a nearby planet and Marko and his mother (yep, Alana’s in-laws have come) must go down there to find her. This is when we meet our gargatuan, nasty scrotum which is attached to a giant who wants to kill our heroes.Saga, volume 2 - The Will and The Stalk

Meanwhile, The Will is mourning the death of The Stalk, and he gets a completely unexpected and totally awesome ally who promises to help him with his mission and to help save Slave Girl. Prince Robot IV is still reading (and becoming obsessed) with the book that Alana was reading when she worked in the prison. We get a really lovely backstory about how this book brought our two heroes together. I enjoyed getting to learn about how they two of them met.

I also really liked how baby Hazel’s narrations and interruptions were more frequent in this volume, as I really like her input into the story. I thought that we got to know our characters even more in this volume and I continued to really root for our heroes. And again, I still really love The Will A LOT even though I know his mission is to kill our heroes.

Staples’ art is incredible and it completely matches the story. She’s able to perfectly capture the looks on our character’s faces and I honestly don’t think any other artist would have worked as well. In this volume, Alana is much softer than she was in the first volume, which I think is because she’s becoming more of a mother and protector. I liked her character a lot more this time, not that I didn’t already like her.Saga, volume 2 - Alana reading

I think I liked this volume even more than the first, and like I said, I had to go buy the third volume because I can’t wait to see what happens next! I can’t recommend Saga enough. Read it. Just do it, okay? 😀

I will, Marko. I will.

I will, Marko. I will.

Don’t believe me when I say it’s super awesome? Check out this article titled “10 Reasons You Should Be Reading Brian K. Vaughan’s Saga.”

Publication info:

Saga, volume 2

Written by Brian K. Vaughan; illustrated by Fiona Staples

Published by Image Comics; June 2013

144 pages

 

Comic Book Review: Saga [volume 1]

I was warned when I picked this up at the library where I work that it was super offensive but really, really good. I don’t have a problem with offensive at all and I’m usually a fan of really, really good, so I checked it out. WOAH! OH MY GOODNESS, YOU GUYS! SO SO SO SO GOOD.

WARNING: This book is pretty dang offensive and has some bad language and nudity, so if that might bother you, don’t read on. I have included a few pictures, one of which has some boobs, and I have one expletive in my review. 🙂

Saga, volume 1 Cover

HOLY SHIT, YOU GUYS (there’s that one expletive). This book. If you are interested in or already love graphic novels, read Saga. It is incredible. I flew through it and then immediately put a hold on the second volume. We don’t have the third volume in the library system, so I’m probably going to buy it. I’m kind of obsessed.

Okay, so the planet Landfall is at war with its moon, Wreath. The conflict between the two has engulfed the entire galaxy. In the midst of all this, two soldiers from opposite sides of the war find love with one another. Branded as traitors after the birth of their daughter, Wreath foot soldier Marko and Private First Class Alana of Landfall are hoping to escape the war that has consumed their worlds to raise their daughter in a safe place. Unfortunately, because they are traitors, the two sides of the war can now agree on one thing: Marko and Alana need to die. Uh oh.

Marko and Alana (along with their baby daughter Hazel, who narrates the story) are stuck on Cleave and must navigate the planet to find the Rocketship Forest so that they may escape the planet and galaxy. On the way, they find the Horrors, a group of ghosts of the residents of Cleave, who are stuck on the planet after they die in order to protect it (it obviously didn’t work well as the war has overrun the planet). Fortunately, Izabel, one of the Horrors, offers to help the couple on their journey. Izabel was one of my favorite characters in the novel. She’s a super sassy teenager with no legs. She’s funny and sweet and completely endearing.

Izabel

The government of Landfall hires Robot IV, a prince, who, I think, is more human than several of the actually human characters in the novel. His “head” is a computer screen, and I really liked how occasionally he’d have pictures show up on the screen either to demonstrate his feelings (like the picture below) or to show the people he’s talking to the evidence that he’s questioning them about. It was quite clever actually.

Saga 5

We also have a couple of other antagonists, mercenaries hired to hunt down the couple and their daughter. One of them, The Stalk, has got to be one of the creepiest creatures I’ve seen in a long time. Fiona Staples, the illustrator, is brilliant and The Stalk made me shudder when I first encountered her. In fact, I got creeped out pretty much every time we saw her, particularly if we were seeing her from a new angle. The picture on the left is the first time we see her and then the one on the right is a little later on. *shudders*

Saga 6 The Stalk

But my absolute favorite character has got to be the other mercenary, The Will, and his super awesome cat.

The Will

I mean, can you say “BAMF”? Look at him walking at us. The cape, the cigarette, that freaking cat. He’s super intense and sassy and I just love him. The Will supposedly only has the ethics that his clients tell him to, but he soon is fighting with his morals in order to… well, I guess I won’t give it away. You should just read it. But I was rooting for The Will, even though he’s technically the villain. Sometimes, it was hard to remember that he had been hired to kill our heroes.

So our heroes.  Alana and Marko are strong and kind and they are perfect for each other. I found that I was on their side right from the beginning; I wanted them to escape the war, to be happy, to be free. I think there is definitely something to say about an author (and illustrator) who can evoke such strong emotions from their audience. I really wanted everything to work out for our heroes.

I could probably talk about all the different things I loved about this graphic novel for days. So I’ll stop there, but I loved this novel and I’m so glad it was my first graphic novel (in a while). I cannot wait to keep reading about these characters.

Publication info:

Saga

Written by Brian K. Vaughan; illustrated by Fiona Staples

Published by Image Comics; October 2012

160 pages