Usagi Yojimbo

by Stan Sakai. Mirage Publishing

Yes, I do know that this isn't Manga, (I don't work for the BBC or Manga Video y'know) but Stan Sakai is Japanese, and I thought that was close enough.

Usagi Yojimbo is one of the best US independent comics I have ever come across. Sakai was drawing for Fantagraphics a long time before Viz and Dark Horse were publishing Manga. He has a unique style which is wonderful, and great "cute" way of telling a story.

Usagi Yojimbo when translated into English becomes Rabbit Warrior, but this ain't no ordinary Killer Bunny. He travels around old Japan as a ronin (a masterless samurai) who fights injustice where ever he finds it. It has always been a good read and you are introduced to ancient Japanese traditions and folklore.

What is new, is since Mirage have started publishing it, it has been in colour. If you like cute anthropomorphic characters have a look, a more futuristic version is also published called Space Usagi. A animated version is in the process of being made. So it may be an investment title. [Steve Whitcher]