I’m going to go out onto the limb-of-statements and just say it. Brian K. Vaughn is my favourite comic book writer. When you say his name you have to include the ‘K’. It’s like a ‘KAPOW’ in Adam West’s Batman and Robin.
Brian K(apow) Vaughn is my favourite comic book writer.
Wow. It feels good to write it down.
Don’t get me wrong, I like a LOT of comic book writers (and artists). I like a LOT of comics. But there’s something about Mr Vaughn. It’s not just that his titles are genuinely thought-provoking, or that his characters are believable, or that he writes women like a woman. It’s that he’s funny. Really funny.
And I guess his first creator-owned, or independent, title should alert us to the humour embedded in all of his work – Y the Last Man.
I remember hearing about the concept and rolling my eyes:
“It’s about the only man left on the planet after a virus kills all the other men.”
This is where I rolled my eyes.
“But it’s really good,” said Gav waving it under my face.
I borrowed the first book, mostly hoping that Gav would leave me alone if I appeared interested. Then I read it. And it was brilliant. Vaughn’s world is one of desperate searches for meaning, of mourning, of the nihilistic certainty of extinction and all the frantic lurching towards life that certain annihilation might entail. This combo doesn’t make for happy-party-time. It’s full of pathos, desperate energy and – ultimately – it’s just so damn funny.
The other thing that I love about this series, is that it announces, right off the bat, that Brian K(apow) Vaughn is not afraid of writing women. Strong, complex women. Or, to put it another way, good characters. And as his career has progressed, so have his characters. Especially in one of his more recent titles, and my personal favourite, Saga.