Craig's Reviews > Y: The Last Man - The Deluxe Edition Book One

Y by Brian K. Vaughan
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Jan 23, 2010

really liked it
bookshelves: graphic-novel-favorites
Read in January, 2010

I refuse to read any other reviews on this series before I post this. Therefore, I may sound either stupid or prescient. Or maybe a bit of both. Personally, I am leaning towards stupid, but...

Friends have been telling me to read this series for quite a bit. They said "you like literary comics, so..." or "You're obsessed with end of the world plague sort of stuff that presents humanity in a different light..." or "you took women's studies classes in college, so you might find it interesting..."

Well, to be honest, I never read it because it was written by a man. No matter how idiotic I think the 'war of the sexes' can be, somehow I thought that a man could not write this series and make it serious, make it meaningful... Really, a man writes a story about the last man on earth? How original.

Flash forward to Christmas this year. A good friend of mine (who should not have gotten me a gift...) bought me this. And because a friend bought it for me, I had to read it. And...

What a fool I have been. I have maintained for a long time that good sci fi/fantasy/zomie/apocalypse fiction exists to make us examine ourself in ways that it is difficult for other literature to approach quite as directly. (And those who know me and my penchant for poetry and 'slice of life' prose know that I do not mean to belittle any other forms.)

And this book maintains that tradition. I have no idea where the series goes from here, but I am very impressed with this volume. There is a fantastic sense of history here, not only of this country, (I learned several things that I had never heard of from the revolutionary war period, especially) but of the world and how men and women are treated within it. I feel like I am a male that understands a good deal about gender dichotomy in this world and I have no regrets in saying this taught me a thing or two.

Maybe it is better that this story is written by a man -- because only a man could understand the idiocy of a man's place the way this author does. Again, I turn myself over to the gender 'war,' but there is a sliver of honesty there. There are so many moments in this book handled so deftly and subtly. In other hands, I'm sure they would have knocked you over the head or else simply gone over the head of many readers. With so many comic readers being male, perhaps a bit of a male viewpoint was needed to really shatter the male viewpoint.

That is not to say that there aren't some comic book story traditions that aren't upheld too rigidly and some cliche story elements that don't creep in... And that is where the stupidity or prescience creep in. Those of you that have read further into the story can laugh at my hope for this story or say that I saw this glimmer of brilliance despite the small cliches present. Either way, I am glad that I was 'forced' into reading this first volume. I will definitely be pursuing more. So far, I am impressed. I hope to remain that way.
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Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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message 1: by Anthony (new)

Anthony
I love this series. BKV is one of my favorite comic book authors. I think he still writes for Lost, too.


Craig Tony wrote: "
I love this series. BKV is one of my favorite comic book authors. I think he still writes for Lost, too."


I heard that he is not writing any episodes in the final season and I hope that isn't true although 'Darlton' will admittedly be handling more of the writing duties this season than is typical, from what I understand.

Regardless, I'll be reading more of this series soon.



message 3: by Anthony (new)

Anthony While you're at it, pick up Runaways, Ex Machina, Mystique and The Escapists.

BKV could write Power Pack and I would read it.


message 4: by Nicole (new)

Nicole Thanks for the feedback on this. I've been curious about it but suspected it would have the same cliches you suspected.


Craig Callista wrote: "Thanks for the feedback on this. I've been curious about it but suspected it would have the same cliches you suspected."

I'll be throwing up a quick review of volume 3 tonight, but honestly, I am quite impressed so far by the series. I think it is worth giving it a shot.



Craig Tony wrote: "While you're at it, pick up Runaways, Ex Machina, Mystique and The Escapists.

BKV could write Power Pack and I would read it. "


Hey now - there was a time in my youth when I actually dug the Power Pack. Admittedly, it was a very short period of time, but.....



message 7: by JK (new)

JK When my friend suggested I read it I had the same kind of reaction. I was thinking it'd just be about some moron guy going around having sex with pretty much every female followed with random "manly" BS. I'm glad I was very, VERY wrong.


Kate Bystrova If you haven't already, try Saga, his current comic. That is absolutely fantastic, where I found this book (and I've only read this first book) to be lacking.


Craig I will look into it - I have not read it yet. Thanks!


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