This was the first book I decided to review this week. Why? Because it’s a good fucking book! This has been one of the best facelifts of any comic in the past year and that’s because it actually changed something instead of caking on more make up. A lot of times in comics they move the character to a new city for a “fresh start” and they end up doing the exact same thing they did previously. It’s a gimmick that’s been done to death with Nightwing as he’s constantly flung back and forth between towns that don't care to receive him. Thankfully, Witchblade is nothing like the afore-mentioned character title and has attached sustenance to her move. Last issue showed a scantily dressed Sara stuck in jail wondering how she ended up beating the crap out of a grandma. This issue starts with her getting out of the clink and rubbing it in face of Jane, the female cop that’s been harassing her for weeks (something going on with that lady). Much to Sara’s surprise she’s been bailed out by the man she briefly flirted with at the club the night before; that is until the flesh-suited grandma (then young and beautiful) walked by and turned his head. Sara doesn’t even so much as put up a fight as she lets the smooth talker drive her to his place. As it turns out her savior for the night is one Cain Jorgenson… a stage magician.
Once at his place he begins a private show for her. He claims not to be an actual mage, but there’s some super fishing shit happening with Cain. Like the fact that he knows what her favorite cup of coffee is, or where she lives in the first place. Cain and Sara begin making out pretty hardcore, when Sara snaps out of it and books it back home. The next day Sara goes to visit the grandma she beat up, but she may be too late as a hottie with purple hair and chaps makes it there first.
I'm still really liking this book and it has me excited to read Witchblade again! There are so many small elements added to the story and art that truly give this book a feel of being in Chicago. The details in the setting really do play a large role in making the story feel like it’s actually in a different city and has real changes for the character as well. I would say this is the first time that Witchblade has ever felt like it was in a real city. New York with out the details is just lazy storytelling and that’s how Witchblade has felt from the start. Now there is a feeling that this story could be playing out in a city you could actually visit. Granted if you’ve never visited Chicago you won’t be as awed by the attention to detail, but there’s enough there to appreciate the change.
Seeley and Bernard have succeeded yet again in creating an interesting story with acute details that rejuvenate a franchise that was suffocating with the same story sequence month end and month out. This also shows that you don’t need to restart a book in order to give it a fresh start (talking to you Marvel, DC needed that shit). Instead with intelligent writing and a strong artistic partnership you can transform a book that most had written off as a “safe read”, to a fantastic monthly comic.
Writer: Tim Seeley Artist: Diego Bernard Publisher: Top Cow/Image Comics Price: $2.99 Release Date: 1/25/12