My journey in reading Y: The Last Man has been a long one. 33 years if you care to look at it that way. The first volume of the series was also the first graphic novel I’d ever read. Thank you to my beautiful wife for giving it to me as a gift (along with The Dark Knight Returns) earlier this year for my birthday.
I had no idea how great of a present it was going to be. And I’m not just talking about the fact that it sucked me into the world of comics which I’ve enjoyed beyond belief.
No, I mean the story of Yorick Brown and his pet monkey Ampersand.
Sounds goofy at first, a tale of a man and his primate pet, but what an amazing, epic adventure. For those that haven’t heard much about the comic book series, a mass event instantly kills every male human, animal and creature on the planet. All the Y-chromosomes.
Except Yorick Brown and his monkey.
What ensues is a spectacular study in a world with only women to keep it going. Yet, while that concept seems to be the point of the story (that and figuring out just what the hell happened), its heart lies with Brown himself and his journey from a young, immature adult, to a grown man who has seen a harsh new world.
And heart is what you get. There have only been a few books that have caused my eyes to well up with tears while reading. The last Harry Potter book was one. The Road was another.
You can now toss Y: The Last Man, Volume 10 into that mix.
In the first one, I actually saw what happened coming a few pages before, but the shock of it blew me away as if I hadn’t been ready for it at all.
And the epilogue was amazing. The way the story is told in those final pages is breathtaking. The big tear-jerker scene for me was so beautifully drawn and so perfectly executed that it stuck with me for hours after I finished the book.
When it was over, I sadly discovered just how attached I had become to these characters drawn on the pages. I was going to miss them.
I remember reading the first volume and thinking to myself that the idea of a world with only women remaining seemed like a good excuse to draw naked breasts and lesbian love scenes (both of which there are plenty).
But after awhile, those scenes became necessary and important to convey this new world where all hope is lost.
Yorick Brown, Ampersand, 355, Hero…all of you guys will be missed by this new fan. Thank you to Bryan K. Vaughan for writing this story. I’m so glad I read it this year instead of having to have waited month to month from 2002 to 2008 like many did.