Lone Wolf and Cub Omnibus Volume 2 (Lone Wolf & Cub Omnibus) Paperback – 20 Aug 2013
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
In the old editions, there is a picture on the title page of every volume before the table of contents, and a picture on the title page of each individual story (giving a pretty good visual summary the story you are about to read.) And there is also a small picture on the bottom of the blank page after each story, usually Daigoro being cute. I also like how the old editions have "Lone Wolf and Cub Book (whatever):The End, To Be Continued" printed under the final panel at the end of every volume, and THE END printed much larger at the end of the final story. Also it seems that these new editions will not be including the "Ronin Report" (very insightful segments about various themes in LW&C, descriptions and history of swords and other weapons, the LW&C movies and other things) or the picture galleries that appeared in the back of various volumes.
Anyway those are all relatively small details that don't affect my enjoyment of these awesome new omnibus editions. It does however mean that I won't be selling off my collection of the old editions anytime soon. I will enjoy having the complete set of both editions in my collection, both having their advantages. The hard part is going to be waiting until 2015 to get the full set, at the rate they're being released. But on the bright side we do have "Shin (new) Lone Wolf and Cub", Koike's recently released 11 volume follow up to LW&C, to look forward to sometime early next year.
And speaking of details, take note of the small new detail in the Frank Miller cover art of this volume: At the bottom left there is the face of a guy screaming in agony as Itto stabs him with his Dotanuki that didn't quite fit on the cover of the old edition (vol. 12). I always looked at it as Itto with his sword behind him swinging at the opponent in front of him, who looks to have his sword ready to block. I suppose it's obvious at first glance, but I felt it worth mentioning because with Lone Wolf & Cub, as with most things, it's all in the details.
Can't wait for volume 3!
EDITED: I also forgot to mention two important things I like better about the old editions: the first is each one has it's own title. "The Assassin's Road", "The Gateless Barrier" and so on. Usually (but not always) it's the title of the most important story found in that volume, and sums up the volume as a whole. Whereas the omnibus editions are just volume 1, volume 2, etc. I find it much more interesting to think of a volume in terms of a cool title like "Talisman of Hades" versus just "volume 11".
And the final, possibly most important detail regarding why I think the old editions are better: The stories fit so perfectly well into 28 volumes of, on average, 5 stories each. For example, Volume 2: The Gateless Barrier contains 5 stories that all take place during the winter with snowy backdrops (with the exception of maybe the first story) and then in vol 3 back to no snow. But in the omnibus vol 1, it's all just lumped in there with volumes 1 and 3. Another example is Volume 15: Brothers of the Grass. All 5 stories in that volume deal in some way with the "Kusa" (grass), secret ninjas planted in hans and villages around the nation. And the stories in the previous and following volumes do not feature the grass. But when the omnibus editions catch up to that point, volume 15 will probably be lumped in with volumes 14 and 16, and you might not notice the thematic nature of the stories as well. I'm not sure how it was released in Japan, but it feels to me like it was in fact meant for exactly 28 volumes of roughly 5 stories each.
Ok end of rant.
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