"Fall Frost, 1 of 6"
Writer/Artist: Hiroaki Samura
Publisher: Dark Horse
Following on immediately from the superb Beasts trade, Manji's quest to find the missing Rin takes a back seat as the storyline focuses on his friend, Magatsu, looking for vengeance against the killer of his girlfriend. This Shira he's after is a dangerous character (frankly it doesn't look like Magatsu will be anywhere near good enough to kick Shira's ass), and Shira knows Magatsu is on his trail - and sets up a nasty trap to waylay him (and inadvertantly take care of the recuperating Mangi at the same time).
There are numerous special touches in this issue - despite the seriousness of the previous storyline, and the strange sense of inevitability and foreboding the reader has about the fate of Magatsu throughout this issue, there's time for humourous touches - from Magatsu gently ribbing Manji about Rin clucking over him like a mother hen when he was injured, to Magatsu thinking he's having his portrait drawn whilst in fact the artist is trying out new...hair styles.
This book is very bit as good as Lone Wolf & Cub, and benefits from the regular changes in perspective rather than being religiously devoted to the exploits of one man. Recommended.
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