Battle Of The Bunraku In Usagi Yojimbo #3

by Josh Davison

[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]

Usagi and Sasuke have discovered that Takagi has been instructing his puppets to attack citizens so that he can absorb their life force. Usagi and Sasuke try to stop Takagi, but his puppets are many and don’t stop no matter how badly wounded. Sasuke chases Takagi back to the Bunraku theater, leaving Usagi to battle all of the puppets. Thankfully, the village police arrive on the scene and call for reinforcements, but they are overwhelmed by the puppets within seconds. Usagi chases them back to the Bunraku theater for a final battle between Usagi and Sasuke against these demonic puppets.

Usagi Yojimbo #3 cover by Stan Sakai
Usagi Yojimbo #3 cover by Stan Sakai

Usagi Yojimbo #3 concludes the “Bunraku” story arc, the first Usagi story under the IDW Publishing umbrella. It is an action-packed issue, with Usagi and Sasuke battling Takagi and his puppets across the village throughout the comic.

As such, the story is pretty straightforward with the exception of one or two complications. It’s just our two heroes against demonic evil forces, and the conflict has been well-established in previous issues, allowing this comic to be both intense and compelling.

It is worth mentioning that the story is so easy to follow that one could just jump in on this issue and follow what’s happening too. That isn’t an easy thing to pull off, and the comic deserves to be applauded for it.

Usagi Yojimbo #3 art by Stan Sakai and Tom Luth
Usagi Yojimbo #3 art by Stan Sakai and Tom Luth

Stan Sakai remains a wonderful artist, with this colorful world of anthropomorphic animals being both frightening and absorbing in this issue. The battle scenes flow well, look good, and deliver an impact. Tom Luth’s colors make the world more vivid and lively, and it suits the world of Usagi quite well.

Usagi Yojimbo #3 is a fun and exciting finale to this first story arc of the new series. We get to see Usagi take on frightening and mystical forces with the help of Sasuke. It’s fast-moving, paced well, and endlessly engaging. As such, it earns a recommendation. Feel free to give it a read.

Usagi Yojimbo #3 comes to us from writer, artist, letterer, and cover artist Stan Sakai and color artist Tom Luth.

Final Score: 8.5/10

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