writer: Brian K Vaughan / artist: Fiona Staples / Image Comics
George RR Martin didn’t start the narrative style, but he definitely became the face of penning stories where your beloved characters are never safe. While our heroes and faves have found themselves in perilous situations before, with the planet hurling toward a crash course of “nothing good,” threats mobilizing around them and a death of a beloved character a couple of issues back, nobody feels safe. There are elements of the story that feel a bit in a holding pattern, waiting for parts of the story to catch up and sync together as the big events rear up to possibly change the game. Gwendolyn is making deals with shady folks, Marko is contemplating what it means to be lethal again to protect his family, Petrichor is on a dead end quest into deep war territory (or so she thinks). These are all snapshots and backgrounds to the main plot which is Prince Robot’s conscious and subconscious revelations. The opening is so clever and informative without being some exposition heavy entry into how Robot feels about his role in Isabel’s death or any other transgressions. His guilt over that and his worthiness as a father lead to his awkward and interaction with Alana as the two find themselves isolated with everyone else out on separate quests.
The book is gorgeous, has been gorgeous and of course will continue to be with Staples at the peak of her powers. There’s a lot of quick shifting from interior to exterior in this book, often within the same scene and they are handled smoothly. Not a baby anymore Hazel and pregnant Alana are perhaps my favorite characterizations on display, as staples continues to show us the familiar and the evolving without us losing a connection to where these characters began.
Saga keeps being great, even though this issue spun in place a little bit not too much forward action. Still, numerous showdowns are on the horizon and surely, the plot will shift when that occurs.