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Uzal
Uzal1

Animal

Camel

Master

Branan

"Gerraugh!"
Uzal's typical grunt[src]

Uzal is protagonist Branan's lazy, droopy-eyed camel and his main source of transportation during most of his adventures. A gift from Manoah to his grandson Branan, Uzal appears in all but two Son of Samson installments - volumes three and four. He is a rather shaggy-looking beast and generally wears a grumpy expression on his face, unless he is travelling alongside a female camel.

PersonalityEdit

Unfortunately, Branan and Uzal get off on the wrong hoof in their relationship together when they first meet each other outside Manoah's house. Before Manoah has a chance to warn Branan of the animal's "irritable" disposition, Branan gently strokes Uzal's muzzle and is rewarded with of spit of cud to the face. Next, when Branan passes out from heat exhaustion while riding Uzal out in the desert, Uzal leaves his master behind to find water at the Yaffa Oasis. When Branan finally catches up to the oasis and takes in a deep draught of water from one of its refreshing pools, he spits a mouthful of water in Uzal's face as punishment for abandoning his master out in the middle of the desert.

As time passes, Branan and Uzal's relationship improves to the point where it's clear that they have formed a close bond with one another. When the lion hunters Yitzhak and Mizzah from  volume six steal Uzal and Branan's supplies from their shared campsite in the middle of the night, Branan finds Uzal tied up in the livestock pen at the nearby Philistine army's encampment and is clearly grateful for the animal's safety.

Besides providing comic relief, Uzal's dirty habit of spitting in people's faces becomes useful to Branan when dealing with miscreants during his adventures. Whenever Branan needs a distraction, he finds a way to get his antogonists to move their heads toward Uzal's face, agitating him enough to provoke the spitting reaction. Uzal has saved Branan many times by diverting his attackers thus.

That the comic's writers decided to end the series with a humorous interaction between Branan and his camel is a testament to Uzal's importance to the story, and to Branan. Surly as he often can be, Uzal is more than Branan's beast of burden - he is family.

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