This month’s issue of “Saga” saw the return of Marko and Alana’s spunky, disemboweled spectral babysitter, Izabel. It also saw the potential demise of one of my favorite characters in the book, but let’s hold off on the spoilers for now.
Fiona Staples’ artwork continues to shine here. Her slick digital inking keeps the art loose and fluid, giving as much information as possible with the least amount of lines. Her beautiful digital paints then come in to fill in the blanks.
With this issue I’m really starting to see that, while Staples is certainly a skilled penciller and inker, it’s her coloring that does all the heavy lifting. If the cover to this issue alone doesn’t show you what she’s capable of, just take a look at the depth of the canyon on page two, panel two. It goes on for miles and it totally fleshes out the scene, with cool colors that tell you everything from what time of day it is to how the air must taste, but it’s simple enough that it allows the foreground image of Marko and Alana to really pop out at you. And the double-page spread in the center of the issue? Gorgeous.
Meanwhile, on the writing side of things, I did have some problems. Here’s where we kind of get into spoilers, so if you haven’t read the issue yet, consider yourself forewarned. First of all, I just wasn’t too happy with the Space Baby thing. The “Timesuck” as The Will called it. I understand that this was the infantile version of a fearsome space predator, but I didn’t really feel like it belonged in this comic.
Now granted, we’ve seen gigantic barbarians with their wrecking ball-sized scrotums hanging out and orange babysitter ghosts wearing a beanie and t-shirt while everyone else looks like they’re from a Kryptonian petting zoo, but come on. A big blobby baby that cries space goo? It’s a bit much, and even discredits some of the serious baby stuff going on with Hazel and Alana.
And secondly, are we really going to kill Lying Cat? What the hell? That’s like killing Chewbacca. She’s the perfect foil to The Will, a character that has already lost his ex-girlfriend earlier in the series. To be fair, this was just the cliffhanger to the issue, and for all we know Lying Cat might be rescued in the next one. Here’s hoping. Plus, I’m kinda starting to get the sense that The Will isn’t really the bad ass of the series, he’s just the hacky sack, the unfortunate schmuck who the author just can’t let have nice things. I’m really just starting to feel bad for him more than anything else, and originally I had thought this guy could be another Boba Fett. Oh well.
Anyway, a good issue, for the most part. Still a very strong series. Felt like it was getting a little derailed with this detour into space baby territory, but hopefully it gets back on track and keeps chugging forward.