Usagi Yojimbo: Teru Teru Bozu (#128, UY #187) – Stan Sakai

3 out of 5

Falling a little too obviously and predictably into an “it was all a dream!” structure, Teru Teru Bozu has its charms – the cultural inclusions; Usagi’s charming and respectful relationship with the family in whose home he’s staying – but it’s also a very side-ish story – not the classic one-shots that populate the title’s history, and not exactly filler, either, but just sort of UY idling for an issue. The cover doesn’t even directly (or indirectly) tie to the content, which is rare.

Usagi spends a rainy day with a father, mother, and son, and the son has an alarming dream in which all – Usagi included – are attacked by a monster. Stan gets to indulge in a death scene for our protagonist, here, and the scuffle itself is excitingly detailed, even if it’s all very obviously going to be not real in some fashion or another. (Even prior to Usagi getting a’monster gobbled, it’s apparent.)

Also: the kid’s sort of a pisser, so I’m okay with him having a bad dream.