Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard #1
Written/drawn by David Petersen, Mark Buckingham, Skottie Young, Hannah Christenson
Published by BOOM!/Archaia
At the June Alley Inn, should you lack the funds to pay for your food, drink, or lodging you can open a tab. Should that tab remain unpaid, the Proprietor will propose a trade. A tale in exchange for a clean bill. But not just any tale will do. It must be an original story, and best tale you’ve ever told.
This is the premise for the four volume Mouse Guard: Legend of the Guard, and volume three does not disappoint.
Everyone has a story to tell. Stories are part of our past, present, and future. At one time, storytelling was the only form of entertainment. With the rise of technology, the tradition of storytelling has faded into legend. So it’s nice to see the idea of sharing stories return in a new form. Mouse Guard: Legend of the Guard #1 spins three yarns told by members of the Mouse Guard who have managed to rack up quite the bill at the June Alley Inn. Though the main goal of each storyteller is to clear their tab, the stories chosen are certainly meant to pass on valuable lessons to their audience.
The first story to tickle our ears is that of “The Gosling and the Ghost” by Mark Buckingham. A simple story about a greedy goose, a miller, a member of the Mouse Guard, and one rather unusual plan to stop the troublesome fowl. Though the miller rids himself of one burden, another one falls into his lap, or into his wallet to be more exact. Buckingham’s and Lee Loughridge’s use of ink washes and pencil contrast David Petersen’s use of bold colors and black lines, which aids the lighthearted nature of the story.
Next up is Skottie Young’s “The Mouse and the Moon” which departs Mouse Guard’s style completely, and offers a whimsical tale paired with a fanciful artwork. Revolving around a father and son and the age old question “What is the moon made out of?” It isn’t the answer that matters, it’s the journey one takes to find that answer. This story is sure to leave readers feeling all warm and fuzzy.
Finally, we hear Hannah Christenson’s “The Armor Maker” a story about a simple armorer who learns there is more to a hero than a noble birth. Christenson’s artwork utilizes fine lines to create intricate details. The suits of armor benefit from Christenson’s style the most, as the designs highlight the armorers incredible skill in shaping metal and serve as proof that he is more than a mouse with a hammer.
With simple stories and delightful artwork, Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard volume three is a fantastic way for fans of Mouse Guard to spend their time while waiting for the next adventure to begin.