Current Reviews


Y: The Last Man #59

Posted: Thursday, November 15, 2007
By: Robert Murray

Writer: Brian K Vaughan
Artist(s): Pia Guerra, Jose Marzan, Jr (i), Zylonol (c)

Publisher: Vertigo/DC Comics

Iím going to write this review short and sweet, because this is the main impression I was left with after reading Y: The Last Man #59. Seriously, it only took about five minutes to read this issue, and I was slowing down to take in everything. In fact, I reread it immediately just to make sure I didnít miss anything (Iíve been playing a lot of Brain Age 2 and Flash Focus on my DS, so I should be up for this!). Basically, what speeds this issue to its conclusion is the final (I think) confrontation between Yorick and Alter. The full page illustration of Yorick, donned in a gasmask and brandishing a police baton, got my juices flowing for what I was about to witness. However, this is Brian K. Vaughanís baby, so I should have known that this face-off wouldnít be a cut-and-dry affair in which someone died. The confrontation ends with a suitable, albeit lackluster, resolution as to why Alter has been so dogged in her pursuit of Yorick. As we know, women are never up to her... Wait a second! This is the second reason why I canít write a longer review about issue #59. I canít spoil this issue for the Y readers who havenít read this yet or those readers who are catching up via trades. This is kind of a code of honor regarding Y the Last Man among reviewers I know! Iíll hint a little, but really this review is to affirm that this current issue of Y is just as involving and visually powerful as most of the 58 issues that have preceded, making it one of the best titles Vertigo has ever produced.

I canít believe that the penultimate issue of the series went by so quickly! Talk about a super tease! With the ending of last issue still ringing loudly in fansí ears, Yorick and the gang now face the final push of Alter and the Israelis. As in most mysterious narratives, the deceased person becomes the subject of speculation. In this case, Agent 355 is a key figure in everything that has happened to the males of planet Earth, or so Alter claims in her confrontation with Yorick. She continues to push Yorick, even injecting her connection with Yorickís motherís death. In the end, Yorick does the heroic thing and gives Alter back to her army, who leave him alone for good (or so we think). The issue ends with a whisper rather than a bang, giving all fans of the series the impression that the double-sized last issue will be filled with drama and emotional resolutions. What will continually impress me about this series (Oh yeah, I totally plan on going back to reread the entire series after Januaryís finale) is the synergy that Vaughan and Guerra have throughout each issue, making the quietest of scenes roar with power. The final two pages of this issue are typical of Y, using the full extent of each panel and the facial emotions of the characters to tell you everything you need to know about the situation. There are only ten words spoken in these pages, but youíll be thinking about each image for the next two months until #60 hits shelves. Y is the closest comics come to a cinematic experience in regards to the sheer power of imagery and spoken dialogue. Issue #59 is an intimate experience that deserves to be shared with other lovers of the medium, but only after they have read a few of the earlier trades.

Iím going to desperately miss this series after itís gone, especially since Iíll only be able to get my Vaughan fix in the pages of Ex Machina (which is very good, but not in the same class). I only hope that issue #60 concludes the series with the same grace that has preceded it, giving the strongest written characters in comics a fine send-off.

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