Sunday, November 24, 2013

Mouse Guard Character Drawings


The first thing you’re struck with by Mouse Guard is how beautiful it is. I was reading Winter 1152 in public the other day and a woman stopped and asked me what it was. As much as I try not to make assumptions about people from their appearances, I’m guessing that this immaculately-dressed businesswoman doesn’t have a large comics collection at home. But she saw David Petersen’s highly realistic, stunningly detailed, and lushly colored artwork and was attracted by it enough to want to know more.

But Mouse Guard is about more than the pictures and the seasons in the title dictate more than just Petersen’s color palettes. There’s a deep, compelling story at work with human characters – mice though they may be – and powerful themes that reflect the time of year they’re set in.

Mouse Guard is set in a world of sentient mice who live in a medieval era, paralleling the same age in human history, though in their world there are no humans. Its stories revolve around a brotherhood of mice known as the "Mouse Guard" who have sworn an oath to serve their fellow civilian mice in times of need, including making safe passage for them through the wilderness and protecting them from predators.

"The mice struggle to live safely and prosper among all of the world’s harsh conditions and predators. Thus the Mouse Guard was formed. After persevering against a weasel warlord in the winter war of 1149, the territories are no longer as troubled. True, the day to day dangers exist, but no longer are the Guard soldiers, instead they are escorts, pathfinders, weather watchers, scouts and body guards for the mice who live among the territories. Many skills are necessary for the guard to keep the borders safe. They must find new safe ways and paths from village to village, lead shipments of goods from one town to another and, in case of attack, guard against all evil and harm to their territories." They are not simply soldiers that fight off intruders; rather, they are guides for the common mice looking to journey without confrontation from one hidden mouse village to another. The Guard patrols borders, finds safe ways and paths through dangerous territories and treacherous terrain, watches weather patterns, and keeps the mouse territories free of predators. They do so with fearless dedication so that they might not just exist, but truly live.


Debra She Who Seeks said...

Sounds charming!

Kal said...

It's a neat little graphic novel series. I am always afraid for the little mice who have to fight real predators like Hawks and Owls.