When it comes to the representation of Japan in comics, Wolverine is the ideal character for providing a Western perspective. The Land of the Rising Sun is an essential part of Logan’s backstory, and I’ve waxed lyrically about how important Japan is to his identity. Many stories have been told about Wolverine and Japan, showing the divide between man and beast, ronin and samurai. The Comic Vault is listing five key stories that will give you an idea of how Wolverine fits into Japanese culture. Continue reading “5 Must-Read Wolverine Comics That Will Make You Appreciate Japan”
Samurai are traditionally depicted as brave warriors who value honour and duty. They were known to serve their masters loyally, to lay down their lives and sacrifice everything in the pursuit of Bushido. Marvel has done a great job of emphasising Japanese culture, with the Silver Samurai representing a traditional image. The identity has been used by two characters, though it has been linked with dishonour, due to Kenuichio Harada starting off as a villain. Over time, Harada looked to regain his honour and The Comic Vault is looking into the history of the Silver Samurai to see how the identity contrasts with conventional Japanese imagery. Continue reading “How Does Silver Samurai Break The Mould For Traditional Japanese Imagery?”
Wolverine has faced many challenges in his long life, but he’s also found love on several occasions. Logan has loved many women, with one of his most enduring relationships being with Mariko Yashida. Their relationship is essential to understanding who Wolverine is as a person because Mariko is a physical representation of his relationship with Japan. The Comic Vault is taking a look into the nature of their dynamic in order to see how Mariko inspired Wolverine to become a better version of himself.
Wolverine is a character that has been continuously redefined over the years, with his link to Japanese culture being a major part of his backstory. Japan is a place of great love and tragedy for Wolverine, and Old Man Logan: The Scarlet Samurai, written by Ed Brisson, brings an older Wolverine back to the Land of The Rising Sun to face the past. Logan is forced to confront an old love, which makes for one of the most emotional graphic novels I’ve read for a while. I was hyped to read the story and I’m glad to say it didn’t disappoint. Continue reading “Old Man Logan: The Scarlet Samurai Review: An Emotional Story Of Lost Love In Japan”
Comic Cover Corner puts the spotlight on a remarkable comic cover and the artist responsible for creating it. A cover I came across recently that blew me away is Old Man Logan #31, which was drawn by Mukesh Singh. The cover features an elderly Wolverine reuniting with one of the great loves of his life, Mariko Yashida. Not only is the art stunning, but the cover itself tells an emotional story through body language and colour. As a fan of Wolverine and Japanese culture, I think the cover does a brilliant job of capturing the soul of the character and his connection to the Land of the Rising Sun.
One of the most entertaining things about comics is the plethora of powers. Seeing a superhero like Storm control the weather and summon a lightning bolt is a sensational visual. But an underrated factor in comics is the weapons that are used. There are so many mystical items that come with their own mythology, adding to a character’s backstory. Magical swords are a great example and The Comic Vault is featuring four blades that come with formidable reputations.
When it comes to decorative statues, good craftsmanship is essential, which is why I enjoy collecting them. A type of figure I’ve appreciated for some time is jizai okimono, a Japanese design that was started in the 17th century by makers of samurai armour. The words roughly translate as ‘move freely decorative object,’ and the way to describe jizai okimono is a type of highly-detailed articulated statue that has moving parts. The most common designs are animals, which is why I was excited to purchase a jizai okimono dragon created by Kaiyodo.