Saga: Volume 7 by Brian K. Vaughn and Fiona Staples (Saga #7)

Saga

<–Saga: Volume 6                                                                               Saga: Volume 8–>

*******Spoilers for all the volumes prior.*******

Title: Saga, Volume 7
Series Title: Saga
Authors: Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples
Date Added: June 11, 2017
Date Started: June 24, 2017
Date Finished: July 2, 2017
Reading Duration: 8 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera, LGBTQ+

Pages: 152
Publication Date: April 4, 2017
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback


From the worldwide bestselling team of Fiona Staples and Brian K. Vaughan, “The War for Phang” is an epic, self-contained Saga event! Finally reunited with her ever-expanding family, Hazel travels to a war-torn comet that Wreath and Landfall have been battling over for ages. New friendships are forged and others are lost forever in this action-packed volume about families, combat and the refugee experience.


Be warned, this volume of Saga is absolutely devastating.  When I reached the final pages, I just sat there, turning them with my mouth agape and tears streaming from my unblinking eyes.  Image and word combined into heartbreaking artistry, and I’m thankful the author promised the next volume will be more upbeat.  I don’t think I could take another story line like “The War for Phang.”

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Saga: Volume 6 by Brian K Vaughn and Fiona Staples (Saga #6)

Saga

<–Saga: Volume 5                                                                               Saga: Volume 7–>

Title: Saga, Volume 6
Series Title: Saga
Authors: Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples
Date Added: June 11, 2017
Date Started: June 17, 2017
Date Finished: June 22,, 2017
Reading Duration: 5 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera

Pages: 152
Publication Date: June 29, 2016
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback


After a dramatic time jump, the three-time Eisner Award winner for Best Continuing Series continues to evolve, as Hazel begins the most exciting adventure of her life: kindergarten. Meanwhile, her starcrossed family learns hard lessons of their own.


I think I’m going to do this review in bullet points and pretty much just copy and paste from my notes, because I’m lazy, and I just added two more books to my review pile.  So here goes:

  • Blue (Wreath’s tongue) is definitely a Romance language.  I can kind of understand what they’re saying.  Thank you junior high to college level French.
  • Hazel is combination of colors just like Hazel (Alana and Marko’s daughter) is a combination of worlds.  Also holy shit *spoiler* she has four wings. *end spoiler*
  • The two reporters, Doff and Upsher, actually did pick up that obscure Oswald quote Alana says on the Circuit when she can’t remember her lines.  Someone warned her that that might happen, and she completely brushes off and then gets high.
    • Speaking of the reporters, Doff (the green-skinned one) recognizes the similarities between Alana and Marko’s story and him and his partner, which is a double entendre because they’re gay, but homosexuality isn’t accepted on their planet Jetsam.  Upsher, though, is too caught up in getting the story and refuses to see it.  His argument is that them kissing won’t send shock waves through the universe like Alana and Marko’s relationship and offspring will, but he’s missing the point Doff is trying to make.  They all just want to live their lives free of persecution based on whom they love and whom their family is.
    • Upsher (blue) is also kind of an asshole.  Doff actually has a heart and cares more about others over just getting a story.
  • Only the royal robots have colored screens.  I didn’t notice this until a character mentioned it, but then I remembered that Dengo the janitor only had a black and white face.  Also at least the royals literally have blue blood.
  • Again this series kicks ass with its inclusion.  Petrichor (which refers to smell of rain) is a trans woman from Wreath who *spoiler* accidentally finds out Hazel’s secret. *end spoiler*  She (Petri) is someone who 100% understands having to keep certain parts of your body secret to protect yourself and possibly your family.  I think it’s an awesome parallel, though I’d love to hear a trans person’s perspective at some point.

If you’re not yet reading Saga, and you enjoy science fantasy, space opera with brilliantly written characters, amazing artwork, and a story that will both keep you on your toes and make you think, I’d highly suggest you buy or borrow it.  I’m lending my Volumes 3-7 to my friend next week, because no one should miss out on this story because they’re currently short of funds.

And so it goes on…

<–Saga: Volume 5                                                                               Saga: Volume 7–>

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Saga: Volume 5 by Brian K Vaughn and Fiona Staples (Saga #5)

Saga

<–Saga: Volume 4                                                                               Saga: Volume 6–>

Title: Saga, Volume 5
Series Title: Saga
Authors: Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples
Date Added: June 6, 2017
Date Started: June 12, 2017
Date Finished: June 15,, 2017
Reading Duration: 3 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera

Pages: 152
Publication Date: September 9, 2015
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback


Multiple storylines collide in this cosmos-spanning new volume. While Gwendolyn and Lying Cat risk everything to find a cure for The Will, Marko makes an uneasy alliance with Prince Robot IV to find their missing children, who are trapped on a strange world with terrifying new enemies.


The volume reveals a Hunger Games vibe when it’s discovered that Landfallian soldiers were originally chosen by lottery, but as the war raged on, it moved away from the original progenitors whose descendants never know its horrors, and the commentary here is brilliant.  How many super powers have started or ordered wars that will never touch them?  Also, it’s never made clear (at least not yet) who started the conflict between Landfall and Wreath, and even if this knowledge is never revealed, it doesn’t matter.

We don’t know why the wings and the horns are at each other’s throats besides the symbolic Paradise Lost/war of Heaven vs. Hell motif, which brings up some interesting questions about the narrative’s take on that.  Obviously, the prevailing notion is that Heaven/God were right and Hell/Satan were wrong, but to look at it objectively, it was really a battle of free will vs. determinism; knowledge vs. belief (or if we want to be harsher, ignorance).  Having the Landfallians own the wings whereas their moon is populated by “horns” whom they’d dubbed the derogatory “moony,” implies there might have been uprising and revolution on the satellite’s part.

It’s not like slavery, especially of the sexual sort, isn’t tackled in the most horrific way in this series, and again, Saga blurs the lines between hero and villain.  The “heroes,” Alana and Marko, don’t always perform the most virtuous deeds, and the “villains,” The Will and Prince Robot IV aren’t always the most nefarious monsters in the room.  There is always someone or something far worse.

And it goes on…

<–Saga: Volume 4                                                                               Saga: Volume 6–>

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Saga: Volume 4 by Brian K Vaughn and Fiona Staples (Saga #4)

Saga

<–Saga: Volume 3                                                                               Saga: Volume 5–>

Title: Saga, Volume 4
Series Title: Saga
Authors: Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples
Date Added: May 29, 2017
Date Started: June 8, 2017
Date Finished: June 11, 2017
Reading Duration: 3 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera

Pages: 152
Publication Date: December 17, 2017
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback

From the Eisner Award-winning duo of Brian K. Vaughan (The Private Eye, Pride of Baghdad) and Fiona Staples (Mystery Society, Thor), Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the universe. As they visit a strange new world and encounter even more adversaries, baby Hazel finally becomes a toddler, while her star-crossed parents Marko and Alana struggle to stay on their feet.


Relationships are hard.  They’re even harder when you’re raising a child together and trying to maintain a steady income.  Sometimes you need something to take the edge off, and sometimes you have coworkers who are more than willing to share and provide.

Most stories give you the happily ever after when the couple is together, but Saga is not most stories.  It begins with Alana and Marko, goes backwards and forwards, in and out, and there’s more danger to their family unit than just the people trying to kill them.

There is no gender role bullshit in this epic.  Alana finds a job in the circuit, a sort of superhero soap opera (that’s her on the cover), and Marko stays home to take care of Hazel.  They both do not-so-wise things in order to deal with the stress.  Both of these things jeopardize their relationship.

And it continues…

<–Saga: Volume 3                                                                               Saga: Volume 5–>

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Saga: Volume 3 by Brian K Vaughn and Fiona Staples (Saga #3)

Saga

<–Saga: Volume 2                                                                               Saga: Volume 4–>

Title: Saga, Volume 3
Series Title: Saga
Authors: Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples
Date Added: May 29, 2017
Date Started: June 1, 2017
Date Finished: June 5, 2017
Reading Duration: 4 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera

Pages: 144
Publication Date: March 25, 2014
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback

From the Hugo Award-winning duo of Brian K. Vaughan (The Private Eye, Y: The Last Man) and Fiona Staples (North 40, Red Sonja), Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the universe. Searching for their literary hero, new parents Marko and Alana travel to a cosmic lighthouse on the planet Quietus, while the couple’s multiple pursuers finally close in on their targets.


I’ve been thinking about how I’m going to continue to review this series, since each volume is not standalone, but rather fits into an overarching (dare I say it?  I’m gonna say it…) saga (ahhhhh), and for a brief moment, I considering not reviewing each one, instead waiting until I finished the 7th, but then I recalled that even that wouldn’t be the end of the story since Volume 8 is coming out in January and concluded that I’ll continue these individual reviews and try to keep them as spoiler free as possible for the prior books.

In their persistent state of fleeing, Alana and Marko, with baby Hazel and her ghostly babysitter Isabelle in tow, visit Quietus, the home of D. Oswald Heist, the author of A Night Time Smoke, the book Alana became obsessed with when she was a Private First Class, and it literally not only changed her and Marko’s entire life, but is the catalyst for the whole story.

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Saga: Volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples (Saga #2)

Saga

<–Saga: Volume 1                                                                               Saga: Volume 3–>

Title: Saga, Volume. 2
Series Title: Saga
Authors: Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples
Date Added: May 23, 2017
Date Started: May 27, 2017
Date Finished: May 29, 2017
Reading Duration: 2 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera

Pages: 144
Publication Date: June 19, 2013
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback

From award-winning writer Brian K. Vaughan (Pride of Baghdad, Ex Machina) and critically acclaimed artist Fiona Staples (Mystery Society, Done to Death), Saga is sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the universe. Thanks to her star-crossed parents Marko and Alana, newborn baby Hazel has already survived lethal assassins, rampaging armies, and horrific monsters, but in the cold vastness of outer space, the little girl encounters her strangest adventure yet… grandparents.


The thing  you have to remember about war is that the only truly innocent parties are the children, and sometimes even they are forced to fight.  I wonder if we’ll ever find out what caused the initial conflict between Landfall and its moon Wreath, not that it matters at this point.  Generations have come and gone and they’re not only still fighting, but the war has mostly moved away from the original combatants to distant corners of the universe.

Stories like this make you sympathize with both sides just by nature of having Alana and Marko being together and producing Hazel.  Both of them fought on opposite ends, but neither of them care about that anymore.  This little family is one blip in an eternal bloody conflict, attempting to escape and ever pursued by those who wish to kill or exploit them.

In this volume, we’re introduced to Barr and Klara, Hazel’s paternal grandparents who are none too pleased their son eloped with their world’s mortal enemy, but like all grandparents, they don’t let such frivolity occupy them for long, especially considering the stakes.

This story continues to impress me.

5 stars.

Note:  I know this is not the greatest review, but I’ve pretty much been shotgunning the series, and I didn’t take very good notes on the second volume.  It’s hard to go on pure memory when it’s just one overarching narrative.  If the purpose of a review is to convince you to read the story in question, I hope I’ve at least done that.

<–Saga: Volume 1                                                                               Saga: Volume 3–>

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Saga: Volume 1 by Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples (Saga #1)

Saga

Saga: Volume 2–>

Title: Saga: Volume 1
Series Title: Saga
Author: Brian K. Vaughan
Artist: Fiona Staples
Date Added: September 28, 2016
Date Started: May 15, 2017
Date Finished: May 23, 2017
Reading Duration: 8 days
Genre: Graphic Novel/Comic, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Paranormal Romance, Space Opera
Recommended by: Cupcakes and Machetes

Pages: 160
Publication Date: October 10, 2012
Publisher: Image Comics
Media: Paperback

When two soldiers from opposite sides of a never-ending galactic war fall in love, they risk everything to bring a fragile new life into a dangerous old universe.

From bestselling writer Brian K. Vaughan, Saga is the sweeping tale of one young family fighting to find their place in the worlds. Fantasy and science fiction are wed like never before in this sexy, subversive drama for adults.


I never read comic books growing up.  Not that I had anything against them.  I make no judgments about the media you consume.  All narratives are worthy of discourse regardless how they’re presented.  Comics and graphic novels just never passed into my zone of consumption until a college postmodern class where I was more than happy to read Watchmen Though even without that experience, I can’t say they weren’t part of my sphere of influence, though I might not have known at the time.

I was obsessed with MTV’s The Maxx and Aeon Flux, the former, which began as a comic/graphic novel and the latter, which has one in the form of The Herodotus Files (currently on my TBR list), and this fails to even mention the plethora of movies that are based on comic books e.g. anything involving superheros like Superman, Batman, the Avengers (Loki!), etc. nor are comics limited to just that as my favorite movie for years Constantine is based off the comic HellblazerThere are more that I can’t speak on due to ignorance, but suffice it to say that comics and graphic novels are no mean genre deserving of ridicule, nor would someone like me who constantly defends video games from the same vitriol ever make such an ill-informed claim.

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