Jim Zub and Andy Suriano continue the Quest of the Broken Blade in this month’s issue of Samurai Jack from IDW Publishing.
Jim Zub has crafted an fun tale with this issue, focusing on Samurai Jack being stripped down to basically just his wits. The odds are against him now, and Zub does a good job building drama around this. The issue moves at a brisk pace, which is fitting for the story being told, and Zub’s dialogue is spot on for the characters and situations. What impressed me about Zub’s storytelling is how accessible it is. This is the second issue of an arc and 12th issue of a series based on a television property, yet it is completely accessible. I’m not a Samurai Jack watcher and I’ve only read a couple issues of the series thus far, but at no point was I confused at all about what was happening in the issue or where it was going. That is not something you find often in comics, and when you do it is to be celebrated. To walk that fine balance between giving readers enough information to stay informed and cater to your monthly readers, well, that’s an accomplishment and Zub nails it.
Andy Suriano and Ethen Beavers bring a ton of fun to this comic with some energetic and highly stylized artwork. This comic is unmistakably Samurai Jack, which is the goal, of course, but the artists make it their own as well. There so much life in this artwork that you can’t help but be drawn toward the images, their cartoon-y nature made me smile often throughout the issue and both Suriano and Beavers inject a ton of personality into this issue. These characters leap off of the page and the colour work by Josh Burcham gives the comic a lot of life. These images get a lot of punch from the colour, and then the darker moments of the issue hit with larger impact due to the lack of intense colour. This artwork is everything you’d expect to see in a Samurai Jack comic, and fits the tone of the story very well.
Zub, Suriano and Beavers have got a fun thing going on in Samurai Jack #12. Fans of the show should love this comic, and it’s a safe read for younger audiences as well. That’s not to say it’s explicitly for kids, it’s just safe for all ages and extremely accessible. They pulled me in enough to have me coming back for issue #13, and I need to know what happens to this broken blade!
The Verdict: 7.5/10