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Samurai Jack Volume 3: Quest For The Broken Blade Paperback – April 21, 2015
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"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
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About the Author
Jim Zub is a writer, artist and art instructor based in Toronto, Canada. Over the past fifteen years he’s worked for a diverse array of publishing, movie and video game clients including Marvel, DC Comics, Capcom, Hasbro, Cartoon Network, and Bandai-Namco. He juggles his time between being a freelance comic writer and Program Coordinator for Seneca College‘s award-winning Animation program. His current comic projects include Dungeons & Dragons, a new series celebrating 40 years of the classic tabletop RPG, Thunderbolts, the return of Marvel’s villainous superhero team, and Wayward, a modern supernatural story about teens fighting Japanese mythological monsters.
Originally docked in Detroit, Michigan, Andy Suriano hooked up with a circus-type, comedy/magic show when he was 18. He traveled the world performing for the next 7 years, sometimes on crazy European TV Variety shows, other times in historic Vaudevillian theatres, occasionally in front of ten thousand people, royal families, that sort of thing. The group even did a couple Fox specials here in the states way back in ’95 called The Rudy Coby Show. Andy’s specialty: walking on his hands as a two foot tall Elvis.
An accomplished graphic artist and illustrator, Andy’s worked both in comics and animation—winning an Annie Award for his work on Samurai Jack. He has also designed on other Emmy Award winning shows like Fairly Oddparents, Star Wars: Clone Wars and a bunch of others. He has also had a few pilots in production at Cartoon Network, Warner Bros., BET and Disney respectively.
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if you liked the animated series, you'll probably like this
"Quest for the Broken Blade" is a slight change of pace from previous volumes, in that it's not as action-packed and is far more dramatic than adventurous. But it's still a wonderful visual treat, as well as a powerful story that fits into the mythos of the show.
Jack is still questing for a way back home when an old mystic offers him a possible way -- using the energies of his sword to cast a spell. The spell goes tragically awry, however, and the mystic sword -- the only weapon capable of destroying Aku -- is shattered. Aku, learning of this turn of events, is quick to take advantage of this, and raises the bounty on him, making him more of a target than ever. Jack becomes more of an outlaw than ever, and wanders the world hunting for some means to repair his sword. But his weapon can't be fixed by traditional means... and before he can restore it, defend himself, and resume his quest to defeat Aku once and for all, he must pass a terrifying test of character...
Like the previous volumes, the art style in this volume is sketchy and fluid, not as clean as the animation of the show but still vibrant and full of energy. There's a real sense of motion to the art, making action scenes dynamic and exciting. And the art is full of fun nods to the original show, as characters from the show appear in some panels. The show didn't make too many callbacks or self-continuity references, but it's nice to see the comic draw on the show's continuity rather than forget everything from before.
The story, as stated before, is far more dramatic, with fewer fight scenes and more introspection and suspense. This isn't a bad thing, however -- even the show wasn't afraid to experiment with its formula and mix dramatic episodes with funny or action-packed ones. And it's a good exploration of what drives Jack to fight, and how he faces adversity and discouragement. There's still some humorous moments, though -- mostly with Aku, who despite being irredeemably evil has some truly hilarious moments.
A must-read for fans of the show, and a fine addition to the "Samurai Jack" universe. I wish this could have been animated and made an actual episode of the show...