From the moment you see a single story listed in the table of contents page you know this will be special. Usagi and Tomoe met in the first ever issue and although they cross paths quite frequently they rarely get the chance to adventure together. This sees the two of them embroiled in a dastardly plot that spells political and physical danger.
We also get to learn a little of Tomoe’s history and family. Through this we are introduced to one of the most dastardly villains you could imagine. Not a cackling two-dimensional cartoon of a baddie but someone dangerous and genuinely scary. This book sets up a great many subtle ideas that you just know will reappear when you have all but forgotten about them.
The art is great as always. The story begins with a five page fight that is virtually wordless yet says so much about the characters involved. The story also ends with a lone character’s journey which is almost as mute making a nice bookend.
This is a real page turner that although appears straightforward will no doubt have repercussions for everyone in future. Thumbs Up!
Tomorrow: Usagi Yojimbo: Volume 22 – Tomoe’s Story – Stan Sakai