Monday, March 28, 2011

5 Reasons: Why you should read Y The Last Man

Hello Todd Squad, Jason Todd here with something a little different. Some of you may recall one of my recent posts where I listed reasons "Why you should be reading Morning Glories". That post ended up going over pretty well, I got a few more people interested in Morning Glories, I got a nice amount of traffic, and I even was linked from artist Joe Eisma's twitter account which was pretty cool. So considering I've recently spent a TON of cashola on trades, I figured I could make this a regular staple of the blog, so "5 Reasons" was born. So below I'll list five reasons on why I think you should read Y The Last Man, and I'll elaborate on each topic, so let's get this thing started!

1.) The Concept - There are a lot of stories that have interesting premises, with "The Nail" we see what would've happened if the Kents never found Kal-El but as normal humans we can enjoy but not relate to that, but we can relate to Y. In Y the Last Man, Yorick Brown has the weight of the world on his shoulders after a plague kills everything with a Y Chromosome except for Yorick and his pet helper-monkey, Ampersand (yep, named after one of these &.) So every man, male animal and everything else is wiped off the face of the Earth, leaving it run by women. Yorick must deal with sex-crazed women, women who want to kill him because they think men are the root of all evil and having the task of solely repopulating the Earth. While doing all of this, Yorick is trying to make his way to Australia to meet his girlfriend to whom he proposed to right before the plague hit. So the drama of being the final man on the planet and trying to remain incognito to keep his life intact makes for a very interesting story. Couple that with numerous side stories involving a host of other characters as well as the mystery of what caused the plague and what made Yorick and Ampersand immune to the plague.

2.) The Supporting Cast - Yorick may be the Last Man, but he's far from the most interesting character in my opinion. Yorick and Ampersand are eventually accompanied by a secret member of the Culper Ring, Agent 355. Agent 355 is a highly trained, highly skilled woman (think the female James Bond) who is tasked with keeping Yorick alive until they can find a way to replicate what made him immune and then repopulate the planet. Over the course of the series we learn a lot about 355's past, and we see this hard, well-trained Agent develop and become a more likable character, I'd say she's definitely my favorite character not counting Yorick. Along with Yorick, Ampersand and 355 we meet a woman named Dr. Allison Mann, whose trying to perfect cloning. In efforts to repopulate the planet they eventually try to get Dr. Mann to clone Yorick, thus making their jobs a hell of a lot easier. So with the mysterious Dr. Mann working around the clock to try to clone Yorick, 355 trying to defend Yorick, Ampersand throwing poop at Yorick, and Yorick just trying to stay alive, the main characters of our book alone offer a lot of variety and entertainment as well as different backgrounds and views. Couple that in with a militant Israeli soldier named Alter, A holier than thou Cult Leader named Victoria that believes all men are rapists, abusive and murderers, as well as Yorick's sister, Hero Brown, a wildcard in the series if there ever was one.

3.) The Writing - Anyone whose read this blog knows that I really love a good mystery. I loved Batman: The Long Halloween, I loved Morning Glories due to the mystery of it, and I loved the show Lost. So of course, I love Y The Last Man, especially when you consider it's written by Brian K. Vaughn, who wrote for the critically acclaimed TV Show, Lost. Brian writes the hell out of Y The Last Man, often having many storylines go on at once, and some they all have a payoff, you also only get the most important parts of various storylines, not any filler just for the sake of filler. Also there's a ton of little things to catch in the series, especially when re-reading after finishing up everything. Small tidbits, and a lot of foreshadowing make this worth re-reading just to find those and see of you can catch any. Brian clearly put a lot of time, work and thought into crafting this series and it shows, you really get a feel for the characters and the women come off as women, not as what men think women would say, which is a hell of a compliment to the skills of Brian K. Vaughn.

4.) The Comedy - When you read something like Y, where by the end of the first issue every man is dead with the exception of one, you don't expect to laugh. But Brian's well written jokes and awesome timing break up the macabre of the series. Oftentimes I'd find myself laughing out loud at things Yorick said. He gives wonderful gems throughout the series such as "Um, I may not speak Hebrew, but it's pretty clear when you're talking about me. All I hear is, 'Gibberish Gibberish Yorick Gibberish." and Yorick getting his girlfriend to dress up like a magician then saying she'd be perfect if her hair was black instead of blonde, a obvious reference to DC's Zatanna. Add that in with comedy at the right moments to break up a tense conversation or mood and you've got one of the best aspects about this series.

5.) The Opposite Sex - You're gonna learn a ton from reading this book, because it gives you so much insight to so many different thoughts, opinions and backgrounds. Everyone's different and that's reflected here, and whether you're a male or a female you're going to learn a lot about how the opposite sex thinks and you'll be better for it. Women can see how men think, how we see ourselves, and some of our biggest insecurities. Men can see how women think, because there's so many different women in this series that very nail gets hit on the head. You learn about independent women, dependent women, women who hate men, women who love men, women who love women and so much more. What you get from this comic is a different view at different cultures, you see people who are easily swayed followers to people that will die for their beliefs, and that's one of the main things of Y. Not just how Y interacts with what most people think would be a female utopia but how that same female world interacts around him without a male influence.

And those are just five reasons why you should read Y The Last Man. Hopefully you all enjoyed this post, if so we'll see soon enough because you can vote for another 5 Reasons in this week's poll. To see what I mean, just vote on the poll on the upper right corner. But that's it for me everyone, here's hoping you enjoyed this post, and until next time, I'm your friendly blogger-man, Jason Todd.

Last week's poll asked "If a Speedster dies during Flashpoint, Who should it be?"

Last place with 16.7% - Wally West, See DC, Everyone wants Wally to live and star in a comic.
Third place with 22.2% - Jay Garrick, The Oldest Speedster apparently has a nice fanbase.
Second place with 27.8% - Bart Allen, Kid Flash falls in second on this race to death.
Winner with 33.3% - Barry Allen, someone resurrect the Black Flash and send him to meet Barry.


  1. Y is one of those comics that I give without hesitation to anyone remotely interested in the medium. Such a strong series, I really ought to read it again. It's just too good.

    Nice article, I hope anyone who takes a glimpse at this takes your advice and buys the series ASAP.

  2. Thanks for the comment Matt, I couldn't agree more. I actually bought books 1,2 and 3 then finished those up and then went out and bought 4-10, and finished those up in about five days. Y is such a great series that just draws you in.

  3. Another great post, JT! I'm really glad that you enjoyed the whole series. The ending loses some people, but I think it's wonderful.

    I think your point that I enjoyed most was the fifth one. The series really does feature a wide range of viewpoints among its characters, and it's never done one-dimensionally. Even when there are characters who you couldn't disagree with more, BKV still does a great job of making you sympathize with them or at least understand that their motivations have legitimate reasons behind them.

  4. Thanks a ton Marc, glad you enjoyed this post. As the guy who first recommended Y to me I gotta give you the credit for helping me get interested in such a great story.

    I couldn't agree more, everyone brings their own life and experience which I love, everyone seemed like they had a past and a purpose. And yeah characters like Alter and Victoria whom I didn't agree with definitely made valid points and had great reasons for becoming the people who they became.

  5. I love how BKV is able to change your perceptions of characters as time goes on too. I don't know about you, but the level at which I empathized with characters like Alter and Hero changed a lot over time.

    And while I may have given you a slight nudge toward Y in the beginning, the credit must go to BKV for keeping you coming back all the way until the end!

  6. Exactly, I flipped-flopped on quite a few characters over the course in the series just after a few things being revealed a mere issue or book later, and Hero is one of those characters.

    Well I owe you, X, and BKV for getting me interested in such an awesome comic. Now I've got the entire Y series as apart of my collection.

  7. Even though I'm just halfway through Vol. 3, I am going to have to say I agree with your 5 reasons for why you should read Y: The last man. This has been another great read so far. I can't wait to finish off the series and get started on Invincible.