Review: Usagi Yojimbo #17
Usagi Yojimbo #17 features part two of “Tengu War”. The comic opens with Usagi and his former sensei Sojobu are surrounded by the Tengu. The big fight happens and while Usagi can hold his own, Nozomi appears to help turn the tide in Usagi’s favor. However, she has her own issues with Usagi, who she refuses to see as an equal until he proves himself in combat against one of her companions. Eventually, cooler heads prevail with a bit of wisdom.
It might not be flashy and Stan Sakai’s artistic style might not be for everyone but it’s what Usagi Yojimbo has always been and Sakai has always kept things looking the same. I know longtime colorist Tom Luth retired but with Hi-Fi Design handling that part, I had no problems with the colors. Usagi is a pretty wonderful character. He’s just been fleshed out so much by Sakai over the years and I feel like his behavior just seems so natural and it’s something that I feel sets him apart from so many characters. As a character full of wisdom, it seemed proper that when put into the situation of proving himself to Nozomi, he refused to kill his combatant and successfully pleaded for said combatant’s life, as they’d need every sword available for the Tengu. And while I appreciate the action inside the pages, I just feel like Usagi’s character is tops.
Overall, Usagi Yojimbo #17 is another enjoyable issue of Usagi Yojimbo. Honestly, I have been reading UY off and on for so many years and feel like it just doesn’t skip a beat and has maintained a quality form of storytelling. As part of a 3-issue story, this chapter doesn’t feel like the slow part in the story and had a lot of good action and storytelling. I feel confident in stating that Usagi Yojimbo is one of the best books I read each month and Usagi Yojimbo #17 is no different.
Story: Stan Sakai Art: Stan Sakai
Letterer: Stan Sakai Color: Hi-Fi Design
Story: 8.0 Art: 6.0 Overall: 7.0
IDW Publishing provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review