Usagi Yojimbo #1, IDW Publishing

A riveting read of swordplay, demons, and talking animals, Usagi Yojimbo #1 (IDW Publishing) captures a moody character-driven adventure within exciting action sequences. New readers will be able to jump into the new series and fall in love with the protagonist, like so many longtime fans have. 

Follow the adventures of rabbit rōnin Miyamoto Usagi as he wanders Edo period Japan on his warrior’s journey. In the start of this three-part story, Usagi becomes embroiled in a puppet drama where the players are not quite what they seem! 

Here are 5 reasons why you should read Usagi Yojimbo #1:

5) The History!

I became familiar with the rabbit rōnin after reading Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles/Usagi Yojimbo. Usagi even made his crossover appearance in the Nickelodeon animated series. This is a great way for newcomers, such as myself, to learn more the character and dive into an all-new series. 

4) The Writing!

Writer/artist Stan Sakai cleverly tells three intriguing tales into one issue. Driving suspense throughout the narrative, Sakai delivers a monster tale, a play within a play, before introducing Usagi. The lettering has a font and style all its own, as certain worlds are bold and italicized.

3) The Artwork!

I love the attention to detail in Sakai’s illustrations, especially when it comes to the wardrobe. Notice how there are even curves to the sword and a sharpness to the tip of the blade. Usagi has such an expressive face, especially when his eyes open up inquisitively.

2) The Colors!

Colorist Tom Luth has such a vivid palette, which is why the clothing and interiors stand out. The bright blue tone of Usage’s wardrobe looks amazing on the page. Because the primary colors take over the page, that’s why the black silhouettes stand out in the background during the play. 

1) A Fantastic Start!

Newcomers will surely become lifelong fans after getting their hands on Usagi Yojimbo #1. I can’t wait to find out what happens next in the second issue!

Usagi Yojimbo #1 arrives in stores on June 19, 2019. 

By Jorge Solis

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