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  1. #1

    Default Why is Y: The Last Man Considered to Be Great?

    Now, I've been reading this series a bit recently and honestly, it's just okay. The writing is fine, the characters are fine (I'm not really finding myself attached to any of them honestly), and the artwork is serviceable. It's just fine, but that's it.

    Then I read the 2012 Top 100 Comic Book runs and saw that it was number 5 (found here). I find that surprising since I don't see what is so special about this comic. I read the reasoning in the article but it still doesn't convince me.

    I'm not saying the series is bad or anything, I just don't see what is so special about it (especially since I read the first volume of Ex Machina and found it league above this comic). Prehaps I'm not far enough into it (just made it to volume 5 personally), so prehaps it kicks into high gear later on. Regardless, why you guys think its great? I'm curious here.

  2. #2

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    I don't know. It's why I'm skipping Saga.

    It goes on way too long. I hate Vaughn's "naturalistic" dialogue. The tissue covered with flies scene in the link above is so terrible. Why would you use that to sample a series? It's like their preview for Starman.

    I could go on.
    Last edited by Mac!; 11-28-2012 at 10:24 AM.

  3. #3
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    There really isn't much to say beyond just "it really does resonate more with some people than others." I personally love it. I don't think it's top 5 ever material, but I do love the characters and Vaughan's dialogue. That and I find Pia Guerra's art to be far better than servicable. I wish she would do more stuff, as I love her style.

    But in the end, if the characters don't resonate, it will be hard to explain why so many find it so affecting. In the end its a character drama, so if you're just not feeling the characters, it won't ever be anything more than just fine.

  4. #4

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    I'm there with you. I thought it was great but not worth the praise it gets (it wouldn't even make it into my Vertigo top 10). After you've read it, you might think that the series is rather silly, in a way.

    There are plenty of Vertigo titles alone that are better than it, before and after, yet it has received some kind of fandom.

    And yeah, Vaughan's Ex Machina is better.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member passer-by's Avatar
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    Yeah, I don't get the huge praise either. I thought it started in a very intriguing way, but failed to deliver anything worthwile either for the story or the character development.

    I do enjoy Vaughan's Runaways though, and Saga is off to a very promising start IMO (give it a try, Mac!, it's way better than Y so far ;) )

  6. #6
    New Member Pralaya's Avatar
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    I have a doubtful opinion about Y: there are some great ideas in this series, for me at least, but at the same time I have been disappointed by some decisions.
    I found the last issue very moving, it touched me.
    I disliked Guerra art, but during the series there was a guest artist called Goran Parlov that I loved.
    I also want to mention the italian cover artist of the second part of the series: Massimo Carnevale.
    By the way I consider "Y: the last man" a major work.
    I guess maybe the problem is that Y receives much more consideration than "Ex-Machina" and it is a bit unfair.

  7. #7
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    It does get better towards the end IMO. I actually dropped it at vol 3, but then decided I may as well finish it, and I'd say the tail end was by far the best part of the series. Still, it was never anything more than somewhat entertaining to me. But the way I look at it, Ex Machina was an attempt at a serious drama, and Y: was more like an action adventure movie.

  8. #8
    Crusader of Justice dancj's Avatar
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    Wow - What a refreshing thread! I never understood the love the book gets.

    They story was okay and I certainly don't regret reading it, but it's nothing more than that. The writing is not as good as Ex Machina, Runaways or Pride of Baghdad.

    The art is just incredibly drab. There's no character to it and every woman has the same build (I'd probably say they same about the men, but there's only one man). Maybe with a more interesting artist the story would've grabbed me more.

  9. #9
    Elder Member Shellhead's Avatar
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    Y the Last Man is considered great because the art is good and the characters are written so well. It doesn't cater to the usual adolescent power fantasies of the typical comic book fan, but instead dares to focus on credible characters without superhuman abilities. These characters are flawed and yet complete, and undergo real changes over the course of the series. The overall story is not perfect. The pacing is a bit slow in the middle third of the series, though there is plenty of action and excitement overall. The last few issues were powerful, and the final issue was outstanding.

    I enjoyed Ex Machina, despite the photo-traced artwork, up until near the end. In the final stretch, the story fell apart. The ending was rushed, and some of the characters were distorted beyond recognition near the end.
    "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
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  10. #10

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    It's not that Y is some groundbreaking piece of work.

    It's that it's a smart, characterful, well crafted story with an interesting premise and one that makes every issue hit you across the face with some wonderful development or cliffhanger. The quality of Y is understated, it's not blowing anyone out of the water with it's insight, it's just hugely relatable and incredibly human.

    It's a perfect book to sell people on comics who don't read comics; it's a long form television show in comic form.
    Check out my New Blog! Just a random assortment of ideas, thoughts, and reviews!

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  11. #11

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    I'll add that already Saga is the most impressive piece of Vaughn work to date; it contains a subtextual layer that his other works lack.
    Check out my New Blog! Just a random assortment of ideas, thoughts, and reviews!

    http://heshouldreallyknowbetter.blogspot.com/

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by Desaad View Post
    The quality of Y is understated, it's not blowing anyone out of the water with it's insight, it's just hugely relatable and incredibly human.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shellhead View Post
    These characters are flawed and yet complete, and undergo real changes over the course of the series.
    And there is my problem. As well written as these characters are, I recongize that and see why others like them, but I just don't feel overly attached to them. I think without that attachment, this comic doesn't have that same meaning or impact to me as it would for other readers. I'm personally more interested in discovering the cause that wiped out almost every male on the planet and why the main character is immuned, which is why I'm reading the comic in the first place.

  13. #13
    New Member Pralaya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InformationGeek View Post
    And there is my problem. As well written as these characters are, I recongize that and see why others like them, but I just don't feel overly attached to them. I think without that attachment, this comic doesn't have that same meaning or impact to me as it would for other readers. I'm personally more interested in discovering the cause that wiped out almost every male on the planet and why the main character is immuned, which is why I'm reading the comic in the first place.
    Ok, so I suggest you to stop reading Y, because the "explanation" of the virus it is what disappointed me most.
    By the way the "reason" it is not forced and closed: there is a "minority report" that sounds more plausible but I guess it is not the explanation chosen by the protagonist.
    However, if I remember correctly, the author is "soft" in this aspect, leaving "the cause" open to reader interpretation.

  14. #14
    Elder Member Shellhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pralaya View Post
    Ok, so I suggest you to stop reading Y, because the "explanation" of the virus it is what disappointed me most.
    By the way the "reason" it is not forced and closed: there is a "minority report" that sounds more plausible but I guess it is not the explanation chosen by the protagonist.
    However, if I remember correctly, the author is "soft" in this aspect, leaving "the cause" open to reader interpretation.
    Yeah, the explanation was a disappointment. If you're not enjoying the characters, then you're missing out on the best part of the series. Might as well drop it.
    "Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
    Martin Luther King Jr., Letter from Birmingham Jail, April 16, 1963

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shellhead View Post
    Y the Last Man is considered great because the art is good and the characters are written so well. It doesn't cater to the usual adolescent power fantasies of the typical comic book fan, but instead dares to focus on credible characters without superhuman abilities.
    You say that like it's an unusual thing. This is a Vertigo forum you know. I actually thought it did feel like a common male fantasy at many times, just not a power fantasy.

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