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Shawn

USAGI YOJIMBO

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This is just to draw attention to a great book that I feel people should at least check out once.

Some of the reasons you should read Usagi:

-Stan Sakai has been the only one working on it for 20 years. Not many creators can claim that.

 

-Great for all ages. Adults and young ones get something out it.

 

-Good artwork. It is not overly complicated and not overly simple. Sakai does exactly what he needs to tell the story.

 

-Intriguing characters with compelling drama and comedy at times.

 

-You can learn a great deal of Japanese history and culture.

 

-It's a samurai rabbit. 'nuff said

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I've never read it, and never really been tempted...

 

Something about a samurai rabbit just doesn't appeal, although I've always thought of it as a kids book. Although I would have said that about a warrior aardvark before I got hooked on Cerebus.

 

Is it a series you need to start from the beginning, or can you just hop on (pun intended) at any point?

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Sakai leans more towards single issue and shorter stories. It is very accesible. You would not need to know Usagi's whole 20 year history. For example the current issue, #78 is about Usagi having to bodyguard an obnoxiuos old lady. While there are moments of humor, it is also a touching and interesting 1 issue story.

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OMG! This series is still going on?!

Wasn't Usagi introduced in the original TMNT comic book? I read the original Ninja Turtles comic, and I seem to remember recognizing this samurai rabbit from that comic book.

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OMG! This series is still going on?!

Wasn't Usagi introduced in the original TMNT comic book? I read the original Ninja Turtles comic, and I seem to remember recognizing this samurai rabbit from that comic book.

Not quite. Usagi started in the anthology book Albedo, which had other animorphic characters. But he and the Turtles did cross paths in each others' books via sorcery or science a few times. Usagi also guest starred on an episode of TMNT in 80's.

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I reall dug the earlier issues of Usagi but something has changed in Sakai's artwork over the last several years. It's not as clean as it used to be. Is it just me? That said, it is indeed a good book.

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Something about a samurai rabbit just doesn't appeal, although I've always thought of it as a kids book. 

 

A friend of mine told me that Usagi Yojimbo had animal characters to represent gore and killings and not to be bothered by the japanese 'comics code'. If such a thing existed anytime.

Rassera, rassera, rasse rasse rassera.

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I reall dug the earlier issues of Usagi but something has changed in Sakai's artwork over the last several years. It's not as clean as it used to be. Is it just me? That said, it is indeed a good book.

Charlie, I have noticed it as well. His past work is more sharp and crisp. However an artist style is bound to change over 15-20 years. It still works for me.

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The early trades are hard to find, but worth every dollar. The Fantagraphics volumes are pure gold.

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