Volume four of the graphic novel series Saga came out in December of last year. I had been patiently waiting its arrival and crossing my fingers, hoping author Brian K. Vaughan would continue to deliver great story with illustrator Fiona Staples. They did just that.
When I first began the Saga series last year, Volume One immediately enthralled me. Vaughan created such a unique world in a fantasy galaxy far away, the back drop being two warring nations, a planet called Landfall and its moon Wreath. The story centers on two fugitives from these opposing worlds (Marko and Alana), who have married and had a daughter. Now the two lovers are on the run as they are hunted by several parties. The story brings lots of plotting and scheming on par with Game of Thrones, along with the main characters’ personal trials in love.
The first volume of the series started out very strong with conflict aplenty for Alana and Marko to face as they escaped with their child. While the two following volumes were good, they just didn’t quite meet that perfect combination of sweetness and badness and intrigue set up in the first volume. Although that may be because of the novelty and freshness that comes with reading the first book. The second volume offered new characters and a glimpse into Marko’s past, introducing his parents and ex-fiance. The third volume fell a little flat for me, in comparison to the first two. This story arc brought little new to the story. It primarily centered on the author of Alana’s favorite book, which inspired the romance between she and Marko. The third volume also introduces two reporter characters, who, in my opinion, don’t do much for the story.
Things start feeling fresh again this round in the fourth volume. We see Marko and Alana settling into a life with their daughter Hazel. The two must deal with the trials and tribulations that come with married life, including money, spending time together, and temptation. In this volume, Alana works as a performer for a virtual theater in a show that is basically a soap opera. She begins to take a drug to take the edge off the stress in her life, which she buys from a close friend she works with. Marko becomes a stay-at-home dad, taking Hazel to the playground and begins spending time with the another kid’s mom. Prince Robot and his family become more prevalent in this volume as royal life becomes less and less pleasant for them. At the end a number of characters who were previously enemies find themselves brought together for a similar cause, which sets things up for more excitement in the next issue. Volume four brought a fresh story to the characters’ current trials and tribulations, focusing on inner struggle, but still with all the action and humor.