Past, present, and future knit together.
Go ahead and put on your Lying Cat T-shirt, I’ll wait…
Writer Brian K. Vaughan uses Hazel to knit together identity with great effect. Hazel’s running commentary is one of the highlights of Saga, as it is the only element of the story to exist with a simultaneous perspective on the past, present, and the future. As such, her insights are vital to cataloging the development of each character.
Assembling the pieces of the past may lead to an interesting present for our band of fugitives in issue #15. The intrepid news team of Upsher and Doff with The Hebdomadal are on the trail of the truth behind Alana’s past and her defection. They aren’t quite ready to blow the lid off the Kingdom’s story that maintains she was kidnapped, but who is willing to shoot at them to keep that knowledge a secret?
Five blissful days of respite at writer Oswald Heist’s home offers our fugitives some rare lighthearted domestic moments. The game Nun Tuj Nun! will likely join Fruity Oaty Bars from Serenity in the upper echelon of cool pop culture references, and watching the characters function as a family to play “the greatest board game in the universe” reveals everything we need to know about their determination to survive. It’s also a huge turning point that begs the question: are living our dreams and having a family mutually exclusive?
Fiona Staples’ art is consistently excellent. Her cover art mimicking the cover of A Nighttime Smoke was brilliant. Body language and facial expression are the stock and trade of every mood and emotion expressed by characters continually surprised by their rotten luck. And Staples deftly places their hearts on their sleeves with each conversation—it’s one of the addictive qualities of this comic.
The issue wraps up with The Will and Gwendolyn getting their ship repaired, and they manage to have as normal a conversation as they can with Will still hallucinating. They agree to continue their pursuit of the fugitives, but at what cost? More hallucinations lead more bloodshed. And if readers weren’t already, Vaughan and Staples are determined to have us rooting for at least one of the—as Hazel says—“nice folks who wanted to murder my parents.”
This is the comic you need to get your friends hooked on. And let’s hope that the Nun Tuj Nun! T-Shirts come out in time for the holidays.
Brian K. Vaughan (W), Fiona Staples (A), • Image Comics, $2.99, October 30, 2013