The term “otaku” is one usually reserved for fans of Japanese popular culture, and others have used to describe on a much broader spectrum, fans of Asian popular culture. Though, I was a huge Anime fan, back in the 80s and early 90s, I can’t quite count myself as one, though I still enjoy the occasional movie/tv show. The one thing that I do enjoy, and have for a while, is Japanese Samurai movies. When I was stationed in Japan, I had a hard few months getting adjusted to culture and trying to remedy the general “homesickness” all of us feel when we are that far away from home.
My one escape was seeing these old Samurai movies at this movie theater near the base. I did not have the benefit of subtitles, and the very little Japanese I did know, would inject itself in very pieces of dialogue. Still, I made out what I could, and thankfully the movies gave enough beyond the language barrier, for me to enjoy these movies. So, when I got a chance to read Tale of the Taira Seno, it instantly transported me back to those afternoons watching those movies.
We meet Seno, a warrior wo had been captured during a battle, leaving her at the mercy of the Narizumi, the warrior who captured her. He gives her into service to his sister, Naruji, who uses her for hard labor but eventually forms a friendship, one that gains Seno her freedom. In cover of night, Seno seeks her revenge, killing Naruji and all her men, reigniting the feud between the clans. By story’s end, Seno stands tall, leaving an impression and a legacy Japan will never forget.
Overall, a classic story that underscores the blood feuds that ruled Japan, before a Shogunate came into being. The story as told by Ben Flebbe and Dan Miles is tempered, action packed, and suspense filled. The art by Milan Misic and Milos Trajkovic is beautiful and vibrant. Altogether, a powerhouse story that will have the reader wanting know more about Japan in general, but about this era.
Story: Ben Flebbe and Dan Miles Art: Milan Misic and Milos Trajkovic
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy