Summary: Two awesome stories -- get Vol. 6 for sure
Comment: The quality of storytelling, art and translation is high indeed. This volume features two great stories -- one involving political intrigue from Northern Japan, and the second features a story about yakuza. Writer Koike provides us with rich detail about the social customs -- the yakuza story is by far one of the most interesting Lone Wolf/Cub stories I've read in a while. The stories are developing -- instead of merely rely upon the hero and his son, Koike fleshes out two minor characters yet still maintains the spirit of the overall epic he is building. "Lanterns for the Dead" and "The Soldier is the Castle" are superb -- get this volume for sure.
Summary: Another Hard-Hitting Walk Down The Assassin's Road
Comment: How strange is it that one of the most compelling characters in comics today is a toddler who has barely uttered ten words in his comic career (As of Volume 6, anyway.)? Yet, in this world of overwritten characters, Daigoro, the "Cub" of the title, stands head and shoulders above the rest. I continue to be struck dumb by the epic battle scenes, the intricately detailed art in the "Quiet scenes", and the amount of characterization creators Koike & Kojima can effortlessly cram into a relatively small piece of an epic tale. There are some great moments her between father and son, and Daigoro gets a chance to show his "Meifumado" in the gut-wrenching final chapter. If you've been along for the ride, you don't need me to tell you how great Lone Wolf and Cub can be. If you're among the uninitiated, give Ogami & little Daigoro a try....You won't be sorry!
Summary: Two poignant Daigoro stories are the gems in Volume 6
Comment: I keep thinking there has to be some sort of drop off in quality for the Lone Wolf and Cub stories, but here is yet another volume in this manga epic that proves me wrong. Volume 6 offers up the next five installments in this masterpiece of graphic storytelling by Kazuo Koike and Goseki Kojima, set in the Edo-period of feudal Japan:
(29) "Lanterns for the Dead," is a change-of-pace story in which Ogami Itto and Daigoro have ordered two toro (lanterns) to be built to carry their souls upon the water. But in that same town a series of events cause a young man to beg the Ronin to sell the toro. Ogami refuses, but takes an interest in why the request was made.
(30) "Deer Chaser" is the name given to tricksters who take advantage of people to take their money. When this particular group of conartists discovers the special symbols used to hire Lone Wolf and Cub, they decide to impersonate the assassin and get the 500 ryo payment. All they need is a child, and they happen to find one the right age sleeping all alone at a roadside shrine. You will never guess who the kid is...
(31) "Hunger Town" finds Ogami Itto training a dog to dodge the blunt arrows he is shooting. Diagoro is obviously in love with the dog, but the animal is a key part of a plan Lone Wolf has to catch his next target.
(32) "The Soldier is the Castle" concerns a ploy by the Shogunate to have an excuse for taking over Iwaki-Daira Han. This mission is so dangerous it involves a double payment of ryo to Ogami Itto. This particular story involves some of the more interesting discussions of the samurai philosophy in the series to this point.
(33) "One Stone Bridge" is essentially another one of those rare but treasured Daigoro stories and a sequel to the fiery conclusion of "The Solider is the Castle." A samurai and his lady watch as a group of older boys attack Daigoro, who has fishing near a bridge. Daigoro's behavior astounds the samurai and touches the heart of his lady.
I continue to read one episode of Lone Wolf and Cub each night before I go to bed, resisting the temptation to devour each volume in a single night. But something this great needs to be savored. The looks on Daigoro's face and the different meanings invested in the word every time he says "Papa" continues to impress and move me. Better to great around to reading this epic later than never.
Summary: Another great valume.
Comment: Basically if you love all the other Lone Wolf and Cub series you'll love this one as well. The stories on these are just so great. I recommend if you like mangas, samurais, or just an epic story this one is it.