Comic Publishers

March 15, 2015

Archaia Reviews: Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard Vol. 3 #1

Mouse-Guard-LotG-Cover-1-FIMouse Guard: Legends of the Guard Volume 3 #1
Writer & Artists: David Petersen, Mark Buckingham, Skottie Young, & Hannah Christenson
Publisher: Archaia

One of the best gifts that David Petersen can give us besides his phenomenal Mouse Guard series is to pepper the in-between times with Mouse Guard anthologies. This is the third such anthology in the Legends of the Guard series, and what a supreme treat it is!

Much like the first two volumes, Petersen bookends the series with the lodgers at the June Alley Inn who are in arrears of paying for their room and board. The owner, June, holds a storytelling contest in which the winner will get to go on their way debt-free. This is such a great concept and needs not change to set up Petersen’s guests from coming in and telling their own Mouse Guard stories. Petersen provides the art and dialogue with his usual mesmerizing and detailed artwork in these cut-aways.

In this issue, we are treated with stories by some fantastically talented creators. First, Mark Buckingham, of Fables and Hellblazer fame, tells a tale of a mouse whose storeroom is being pilfered by a gosling. The mouse and a guardsmouse team up to deal with the goose in a lighthearted way. Buckingham brings a soft pencil to the realm of the mice and with Lee Loughridge’s colors, the story is simply gorgeous.

Next, fan-favorite Skottie Young shares his unique style in a story of a father mouse sharing a life-lesson with his offspring in building a tower to the moon. Young has been honing his rodent-drawing on Rocket Raccoon for Marvel, and he spares nothing here as he weaves a tale that is heartwarming and also dynamic. I was looking forward to seeing his work here and was completely satisfied.

Finally, Hannah Christenson does what all good Mouse Guard storytellers do: inspire the small to do great things. The Mouse Guard mythos is one that pits these tiny, but brave heroes against a treacherous world. Christenson’s story revolves around an armorsmith who dreams of using the weapons and armor he crafts to make a difference in the world. In classic Mouse Guard style, he gets his chance. Christenson does a splendid job of artistically creating a sense of wonder and inspiration in this short story and has the reader believing that we are all capable of great things if we believe.

Once again, Petersen and his company of creators make me hungry for more Mouse Guard. For those who are new to Mouse Guard, these series are always friendly to those walking into the June Alley Inn for the first time. If you enjoy stories of wonder, adventure, and chivalry, then look no further than Mouse Guard.

Jeff Jackson