SAGA #14 hits it out of the park again. The latest offering from the team of Brian K. Vaughn and Fiona Staples hits all the right notes and like any great story-teller, its conclusion leaves the reader wanting more.
Baptism by…puke? That stain’ll NEVER come out.
I’m not sure what this creative team are eating or drinking, but I want some. The overall story advances as Alana, Marko, baby Hazel and Marko’s rather dry mother touch base with the creator of the book that started this whole misbegotten adventure on Quietus. The banter between Klara and Heist is funny, moving and loaded with innuendo. Vaughn does not shy away from tackling the often difficult subject of the blood cost of war. Here it is handled gracefully, as two who have every reason not to like each other come to an understanding based on common loss.
The story is forwarded through another ‘family’, that of The Will, Gwendolyn and Sophie. The Will’s increasingly suggestive hallucinations mark a turning point in his often-at-odds relationship with Marko’s former fiance. Indeed, his protectiveness of Sophie indicates a huge maturation in the way he sees the universe, even if it costs him his daily bread. There is a rather tender moment between Sophie and Lying-Cat that hits you right in the ‘Awwws’.
Alana’s face is priceless.
If SAGA #14 were cake, it would be red-velvet. Sweet, but not overpoweringly so. You could even compliment it with a dollop of ice-cream. Staples’ mastery of facial expressions propels SAGA #14 along and continues the series’ tradition of minimal clutter and maximum spread. Image Comics has itself a powerhouse title in SAGA.
The final panel infuriated me. Not because it was bad, oh no. But because now I have to wait a whole bloody month for SAGA #15.