Usagi Yojimbo #14 (Review)

Usagi Yojimbo #14
IDW Comics

Written by: Stan Sakai
Art by: Stan Sakai
Colors by: Tom Luth
Letters by: Stan Sakai

Stan Sakai has been writing Usagi Yojimbo now for 33 years and is still as good as ever — he always manages to keep the stories fresh and fascinating. What makes this current run so special is that, for the first time, it’s in color.

In the first three issues of “The Return” arc, Usagi’s journey starts with a return home after many years away, wandering the countryside as a masterless ronin — encountering spirits, rival ninja clans, and taking part in the occasional bounty along the way. However, his return home has not been as joyous an occasion as he had hoped for. 

With Usagi Yojimbo #14, you get a little bit of everything that makes this character so special and enjoyable to read, conspiracy, action, humor, and even a little sentimentality. 

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With the conclusion of this four-book arc we find our hero working with an unlikely partner, and  with their backs against the wall, they receive some unexpected help that arrives at the perfect time.   While this trope is often used, Sakai’s master storytelling keeps readers on their toes so Usagi Yojimbo #14 doesn’t become predictable.  Additionally Sakai brings back an old friend that adds to the story’s depth which was a pleasant surprise to this story.  

This book ends with a satisfying conclusion to the arc and with a subtle set up for what’s to come next.  

If you’re new to the title, this arc is a great place to start — as any regular reader of Usagi Yojimbo reader can attest.

Score: 9.0

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