Posted at 10:00 AM Mar 31, 2010
By Jill Pantozzi
Cute animals wearing capes and wielding swords are pretty much a recipe for "Jill Will Love It" soup. This is why Archaia Comics' Mouse Guard is one of my favorite reads. That, and the story and art by David Peterson are first-rate. So what will I do now that they're letting other fabulous creators take a crack at the tiny warriors? Love it, obviously!
While waiting for a new issue of Mouse Guard proper, not hitting stores until September when Mouse Guard Vol. 3: The Black Axe begins, Archaia Entertainment has a fantastic new anthology miniseries to keep us busy. Mouse Guard: Legends of the Guard, will feature covers and chapter breaks by series creator David Petersen but find it's main source of storytelling from popular comic writers and artists, including Gene Ha, Terry Moore, Ted Naifeh, Guy Davis, Sean Rubin, Craig Rousseau, Karl Kerschl, Katie Cook, Jeremy Bastian and Archaia's own Publisher Mark Smylie.
Legends of the Guard will be set in a tavern where a group of esteemed Guard Mice sit around trying to tell the tallest tale, which happens at every good drink-up I've been to. Petersen says the idea first came to him after several artists submitted pinups to be placed in his issues and hardcover collections. "As more and more pinups came in and the series gained fans among professionals I admired, the list of people who I thought were a good fit and would be willing to do a Mouse Guard story grew," he said.
And the creators jumped at the chance. "It's an honor and a privilege for David to give me this opportunity to play in his sandbox," said Smylie, who also writes Artesia for the company. Gene Ha, whose story takes place in issue #2, thinks anyone who dismisses Mouse Guard as a children's book needs to take another look. "David Petersen's heroes never descend to glib jokes and supernatural fighting prowess." Being involved with Legends of the Guard is somewhat of a dream come true for Katie Cook. "What fan wouldn't jump up at the chance to officially play around in the amazing Mouse Guard world that David has created?" she said, "[it's] one of the best things ever."
I agree. Issue #1 is available for pre-order now and will debut in comic book shops in May.