usagi yojimbo

usagi-yojimbo-the-hidden-4-followed

Happy Usagi is one of my favorite things. There’s a moment in Usagi Yojimbo: The Hidden #4, during a lull in the case, where Inspector Ishida invites the rabbit ronin home with him and Miyamoto Usagi enjoys the hospitality of his friend, wife, and son. While there’s still plenty of work to be done in the remaining three issues of the series, it is nice to see Usagi get a respite (however short it turns out to be).

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usagi-yojimbo-the-hidden-2-guards

The second issue of Usagi Yojimbo: The Hidden delves more into Inspector Ishida and Miyamoto Usagi delving into the murder of Christians the night before. Once again we see strong foreshadowing that Ishida’s boss is either culpable in the crimes or at the very least far more interested in finding someone to blame and closing the case rather than uncovering the true motives for the deaths.

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tmnt-yojimbo

The first of three episodes to guest-star Miyamoto Usagi (Yuki Matsuzaki), and the only one written by rabbit ronin creator Stan Sakai, “Yojimbo” finds the Turtles transported to an anthropomorphic dimension and hypnotized by the evil Jei (Keone Young) to kill the wandering samurai and capture the young child who is under the ronin’s protection. How many ninja turtles does it take to defeat one rabbit ronin? More than four. In their confrontation, Usagi is able to knock some sense back into the turtles who agree to travel with Usagi to deliver young Kintaro (Evan Kishiyama) to the Temple of the Sky Buddha.

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usagi-yojimbo-165-mastermind

Usagi Yojimbo #165 concludes the three-part story of “The Mouse Trap” as the thief Nezumi continues to help Usagi and Inspector Ishida‘s investigation into the Black Goblin Gang, the recent murders (one of which the thief was framed for), and the theft of silver, all of which seem to lead back to a mysterious master of the gang.

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usagi-yojimbo-164-fight

Usagi Yojimbo #164 comic reviewThe middle chapter of “The Mouse Trap” picks up with Usagi‘s attacker delivering the rabbit ronnin to the Black Goblin Gang where the quick intervention of Inspector Ishida and the thief Nezumi prevent a groggy Usagi from meeting an inglorious end. Although Ishida is able to save his friend, Usagi is able to overhear a bit of the underlings talk about the hidden true head of the gang, and several members are killed by our heroes, Usagi and Ishida don’t learn about the next attack of the Black Goblin Gang until it is too late.

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usagi-yojimbo-162-54-charactrs

Opening with Kitsune in jail for a murder she did not commit, a situation that doesn’t agree with the thief, the concluding half of “The Body in the Library” offers Miyamoto Usagi and Inspector Ishida‘s investigation into the the second of two recent murders and the theft of precious foreign medicine.

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Available at Wal-Mart, this new 12in. Usagi Yojimbo figure comes complete with two swords and a whole lot of awesome and can be yours for the low, low price of $12.97. New 5in. figures of the rabbit ronin have also been released as part of the new Tales of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles line from Playmates.

tales-of-tmnt-usagi-12in-figure

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usagi-yojimbo-161-killer

After several months Usagi Yojimbo returns with the first issue in a new two-part story. Opening with Kitsune breaking into a wealthy doctor’s house only to discover the man dead, and temporarily being accused of his murder, Usagi Yojimbo #161 offers up a double-homicide for Miyamoto Usagi and Inspector Ishida to solve when their primary suspect in the first murder turns up poisoned in the same manner as the doctor.

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usagi-yojimbo-160-puffer-fish

The single-issue tale tackles the dangerous delicacy of Fugu when a friend of Miyamoto Usagi is accused of poisoning one of his most valued customers. After the shogun’s agent turns up dead from eating improperly prepared pufferfish, Usagi steps in to help Inspector Ishida in the investigation which quickly points to other suspects when the pair discover the original Fugu had been replaced before it ever made it to its victim.

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usagi-yojimbo-159-march

The single-issue story “The Hatamoto’s Daughter” begins with the death of a samurai by a band of ruffians deep in the forest. Hiding his daughter, and proof of illegal matters the gang’s leader wants returned, the man is cut down. Finding the young girl hours later, a wandering Miyamoto Usagi takes it upon himself to see her safely delivered to Inspector Ishida in the closest town.

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