Sunday Story Ratings #66: Usagi Yojimbo Book 3.3: Return of the Blind Swordspig by Stan Sakai


Usagi Yojimbo Book 3: The Wanderer's Road: 3. Return of the Blind Swordspig by Stan Sakai

Originally published July 1988 Fantagraphics Books in Usagi Yojimbo Vol. 1 Issue 9; this edition August 2010

Fantagraphics Books



Parental Guidance recommended for audiences under 15 years of age

(V, D)

Violence {PG)

Drug Use (G) {Tea}




Only male characters, and a tokagé (Spot) of unknown gender.


No presence.

Race & Ethnicity:

Characters are all anthropomorphic animals in a culturally Japanese (Edo period) setting.

Disability, Physical Diversity and Health:

Zato-Ino is blind, but has developed a disability superpower in his sense of smell to compensate. He even has an entry on TVTropes' Blind Weapon Master page. Also thanks to his previous encounter with Usagi, his preternatural sense of smell is provided by a wooden prosthetic nose.



None found



This one is a bit more continuity-heavy than the previous two, referencing not only Spot's origin story in The Tower, but also featuring the reappearance of Zato-Ino and his one-sided grudge against Usagi. Fortunately I read his first appearance in Book 1, but there is a small recap in this story for those that don't know it.

Found this story a bit sad, both through Zato-Ino's lonely-surly characterisation and insistence on hostility toward Usagi, and because this is the last story in which Usagi and Spot journey together.

Zato-Ino is almost certainly based on that other blind masseuse swordsman character, Zatoichi.