Its another issue, and Saga #8 shows much of what I love about the series. Despite being set in a fantastical space setting, Saga is still, at its core, about a key number of people and the relations between them. Developing on Marko’s grandparents, Saga #8 uses these themes to further establish the family.
The official description from Image:
Former soldier and new mom Alana has already survived lethal assassins, rampaging armies and alien monstrosities, but now she faces her greatest challenge yet: the in-laws
Similar to the previous issue, there’s a flashback to an older time in Marko and Alana’s past, once again narrated by Hazel (the baby). The image of how they first met contrasts well against their current counterparts, something that builds on the racial themes introduced in the previous issue.
This issue also breaks up the typical dynamic. Although always together so far, Saga #8 makes the wise decision to break the couple of for this issue. Whilst Alana deals with Marko’s father, Marko and his mother are stranded on another planet. Brian Vaughan uses this opportunity to provide a smaller side arc, replacing the dynamics between Marko and Alana for the relationship between Marko and his mother. You still get to see the same characters, but the change-up in pairings allows for greater depth and focus; Marko, in particular, is allowed a few more ‘bad ass’ moments.
If I had to find an issue with this issue, its that it moves one threat to the other. Any ‘issues’ with the Marko’s grandparents seems to have been resolved, and the issue ends with a typical cliffhanger. Whilst its certainly interesting, and one that will challenge the protagonists in new and interesting ways, it does seem to brush past any threat introduced previously.
Likewise, The Will doesn’t make an appearance in this issue, despite have some form of side arc previously. No doubt he’ll make a return; in fact, his absence might make the character more powerful and meaningful and could prove a welcome break.
All in all, this is an excellent issue of Saga. It does feel ‘in between’ things at the moment, but thanks to the wonderful artwork and careful writing, it doesn’t drop the ball on anything.