REVIEW: “Samurai Jack #8” Man vs. Monster In Epic Silent One Shot

For me, Samurai Jack is another of those classic Cartoon Network shows. Along with Powerpuff Girls and Dexter’s LaboratorySamurai Jack was a firm fixture of my Saturday morning cartoons, and I’ll always remember it fondly. Part classic samurai film, part dystopian fantasy, the Samurai Jack comic from IDW does not disappoint in comparison to the show.

In this latest issue, “Samurai Jack #8,” writer Jim Zub has put together a special silent issue, with zero dialogue. In #8, Jack struggles to cope with the futuristic world that Aku has thrust him in. Where Jack is used to peace and quiet, the demands and noise of the city are never-ending! Jack eventually finds his bearings, and once he’s found the Quece Hotel, he settles in for the night, complete with a pair of fuzzy noise cancelling headphones to drown out the city. However, Jack can never be completely at peace, as Aku interferes, taking Jack from the safety of the hotel and out into the Caves of Crystal Calamity, where Jack finds himself fighting horrifying mirror images of himself… Written by Jim Zub and with character designer Andy Suriano taking art duties, “Samurai Jack #8″ is a great one shot for the series and a good place for new readers to jump on, as well as satisfying older fans of the series.

Series writer Jim Zub has crafted a fun, albeit slow story. While it does feel somewhat like filler and a chance to showcase Andy Suriano’s art, it works well as a solo story. It has all the genius touches that were seen in the series, such as the unique and strange future, which are brought to horrifying life by artist Suriano. Story-wise, it flows really well, and apart from it having a slow feel to it, it works. Furthermore, it feels just like an episode of the show, albeit a truncated one, and it is sure to please fans.

The artwork by character designer Andy Suriano looks amazing. With his telltale sketchy style, using thick, defining lines and dark colours, he brings the world of Samurai Jack to life in a way that is previously unseen. Sure, the show had a noticeable look to it, but Suriano brings all of his creative effort to the comic and makes it look amazing. His visions of Zub’s future are remarkable, and bring to mind a cross between Blade Runner and Terminator, with a dash of the past thrown in for good measure. Suriano’s battle scenes are simultaneously cartoony and super-slick, and it gives the book a great look. Suriano also chooses some excellent colour palettes for #8, such as hazy oranges and yellows for future folk, and dark, seedy blues for backgrounds which give the book added depth.

Verdict:

“Samurai Jack #8″ is a gorgeous silent one shot from Jim Zub and Andy Suriano and is jam-packed with awesome action scenes and beautiful art from character designer Suriano.

“Samurai Jack #8″ earns 7/10

Samurai Jack #8 IDW (W) Jim Zub & Andy Suriano (A) Andy Suriano $3.99 IDW
“Samurai Jack #8”
IDW
(W) Jim Zub & Andy Suriano
(A) Andy Suriano
$3.99
IDW