Tuesday, May 30, 2017

A Hugo Review: Best Graphic Story - Saga, Volume 6

Saga, Volume 6 is about a girl growing up and a family getting back together.

There are a number of competing plot lines in this book, only a couple of which make sense to me. I have read only a few issues of this series - whatever was nominated for the Hugos before, in fact. This whole book seems like a weave of long ongoing stories that take an investment to really enjoy.

The good: There are so many quirky and odd characters in this series, and every character seems to have their own motivations and goals - enough so that it feels like a universe. The artwork is excellent, and I was able to get the gist of the main plots, I think, from just reading this collection. It helps a lot that I've read a previous collection, but I was still completely lost in some respects.

The bad: There's just too much. This is a soap opera with a huge cast and several storylines, and lots of references to things that happened in previous issues. While there is clearly a lot of great stuff in this, it's also not a very standalone thing. This book can't easily be broken into a single plot arc, although I would guess the main arc is about Hazel being reunited with her parents. It feels very incomplete as a work, though, because of the dependence on previous issues. There are also a lot of plotlines left dangling. Again, I'm left with my question of whether or not a work needs to stand alone in order to be worthy of a Hugo. I'm still undecided in general... but in specific, this one won't be on top of my ballot.

Conclusion: I want to like this, but I don't like it as much as I feel like I ought to. It's currently second on my ballot out of the two I've read.

Best Graphic Story: I've read Ms. Marvel and Saga. I need to read Black Panther, Monstress, Paper Girls, and The Vision.