I look at next week's comics and it's just something. And, yes, we're mostly talking Image Comics. Saga #13 and The Walking Dead #113 lead the pack, but there's also Peter Panzerfaust, East of West, Ghosted, Lost Vegas, Mind The Gap and Savage Dragon too.
But also from Marvel, there's Infinity #1. IDW has Thunder Agents #1. DC has Batman #23. Dark Horse has new Fabulous Killjoys and new Buffy. And Top Shelf has March.
You know what? I think we are, right now, living in a new Golden Age of American Comics, and a lot of it is Image's fault. Anyway.
The Walking Dead #113 gives us the ten minutes that occur after the cliffhanger of #112. It would take up ten minutes of the TV show. The comic is much better however. It takes less time to read than it would take to play out on the show, but it's a rush. You can't turn the page fast enough, unexpected moment after unexpected moment, and you end up out of breath. There is melodrama, but it's mostly unsaid. There aren't scenes of weeping or contemplation, things happen far too fast. I like The Walking Dead, but it can feel ponderous and slow in places. And it probably should, this is a comic about survival in the long term, it's necessary to have such pauses. But there are none here. Robert Kirkman and Charlie Adlard give us speed and purpose.
The comic breaks rules, it swaps directions of view in an instant, it feels like there's been a whip pan. For the main focus, Rick vs Negan, the comic doesn't pause on a point of view for more than a panel, it moves, it gets reaction fast, it feels the page with movement.
But there are other battles going on, and on those we linger slightly more. Such as Angie in the sniper tower, going through her own private hell. There is time for things to be said, dwelled on, luxuriated, in comparison at least. Before we snap back to the ground, and the wider, faster, more expansive battle. And some Negan swearing to boot. See, this is the Peter Capaldi I know, shame he has another TV role to concentrate on.
It's quite a ride. You'll get to experience it a week on Wednesday.
As well as the comic you, me, we've all been waiting for. Saga #13. One hundred issues behind The Walking Dead, exactly. It's been a long time since #12, I got an early look, but that means I'll have to wait longer than you for the issue after that than you will. So it all works out.
Now, I know that Bryan K Vaughan specifically stated that he didn't base D Oswald Heist on Warren Ellis. But this introduction to him in issue thirteen doesn't really dispel that theory.
But the article did state that Vaughan is using the comic to write about whatever he wants at any given time, and it's been fun to watch plots meander in that fashion. And in Saga #13, we get the idea that it's time for tabloid journalism to come under the spotlight. But, at least from initial impressions, something more layered than the usual hack jobs.
Although, hmm. I've got a pair of yellow trousers. Not any more after reading this comic, obviously.
But there's also the possibility that Bryan has been watching or reading a variety of zombie books, films of comics of late. Possibly even his stablemate The Walking Dead. And may have noticed that there hasn't been that much of a look in for zombies in the Walking Dead of late. So he decided to have a go.
I mean, after all they already have a Non-Walking Dead cast member, why not go the full hog and give us a very Saga-like version of the undead as a threat for the cast – and a planet full of the possibilities of more.
So, yes, Saga now has more zombies in it than The Walking Dead. And yes, it look bloody brilliant. Fiona Staples, Bleeding Cool Artist of The Year, damn. Saga #13 continues its running, chasing, hiding game. It is daft, it is funny, it is gorgeous, it is scary and it is full exactly what you want the next issue of Saga to be full of. And then stops just short, forcing you to buy the next issue. Oh, and we get the return of The Stalk.
So, yes, the yellow trousers have gone. But I'm keeping the green trousers though, okay? I can only go so far.
Saga #13 and The Walking Dead #113 are both published by Image Comics next week.