‘Samurai #4:’ Advance Comic Book Review

Well that's another fine mess you've gotten us into.

Jean-Francois Di Giorgio and Frederic Genet really know how to build a hell of a story.  It's hard to keep finding ways to talk about this series when every issue brings it all to the fore, so I'm just going to have to go really simple on this one.  The Samurai series by Titan Comics is awesome, and if you dig action, then it's one you should be reading.

The strong foundation of this series is the plot.  What's incredible is that a lot of it happens to the characters rather than because of them, and that's where the brilliance comes in.  These characters (which I'll get to shortly) live in a world that does not belong to them.  Much like A Song of Fire and Ice, there are plots and counterplots turning round and round all the time when our hapless band of misfits fall into them.  What makes this work is the skill and strength of the characters themselves.  It's said that the true definition of character is how you handle what the world throws at you.  If true, then we're getting to see these fun archetypes grow beyond their stereotypical beginnings to be something more that we get to watch get forged each and every issue.

Now, add to that some seriously stunning action sequences and gorgeous images from the art team, and you've got one heck of a package.  The biggest thing that strikes me in each issue is the wonderful composition; every panel tells a story before you read the words, and does so in clean and clear ways.  Half of this is accomplished with innovative spacing, depth, and status, while the other is the intention of movement, the subtle hints of action that flow into the next panel.  Aspiring artists should study Genet's work. There's a lot to discover in it.

It's a very good book and a series that I will continue to read excitedly.  It's a book you can judge by its title and cover, so if it looks good to you, I promise it lives up to it inside.

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