The Witchbalde Orgins Vol. 3 by David Wohl, Christina Z., and Jason Person
So a year or so ago, I wanted to dig back into some comic books I liked as a kid, but never got a chance to read much because I didn’t want a bully target on my back because at the time “Girls aren’t supposed to read comics.” I dug back into Witchblade which is just as good as I remember it, but then got side tracked with Joe Hill’s Lock and Key. And now that now I finished that series, I’m ready to return to Witchblade again. This time it’s on The Witchbalde Origins Vol. 3 collection written by David Wohl, Christina Z. and Jason Person.
The collection is a little different. It include issues 18 to 25, picking up from the last volume and two issues of another comic, The Darkness (9 to 10) which are crucial to this story arc. It picks up shortly after Ian Nottingham saves Sara Perezzi on her little spy adventure. She’s back at work again as a cop, using the magical artifact bound to her wrist to help her at her job. But the police department is attacked and slaughtered. The officers left are out for justice. Sara investigates and finds that there is a gang war between the Yakuza and the Italian mob, which leads to something more supernatural. Sara as police officer who wields the Witchblade, and Jackie Estacado a mobster who wields a similar power known as the Darkness are pitted against Ian Nottingham. A spell he wields tries to take both of their powers, Jackie fights back to keep the darkness. Sara let’s go of the WItchblade.
From there on Sara, tries to live a normal life. She is suffering from withdrawal issues, like a drug addict, but she’s determined to stay away from Witchblade. But she begins to question how long she can live with the thought of the assassin Ian Nottingham walking around with a weapon so deadly. Also there is side plot with fellow police officer Jake who is investigating the death of his girlfriend which leads him to a cult with a Tom Cruise level superstars who can charm anyone. This weaves nicely into Sara’s story, and actually leaves room in the cult tale of more story telling because there is so much more to explore in future volumes.
The good? It’s a unique well told story. Just a great mix of supernatural horror and crime drama that really keeps this whole series going strong. The gang war tale was great. And seeing Sara go through withdrawal was nice too. She continues to be a phenomenal female lead who is tough but not ridiculously bad ass either. And Ian’s side is intriguing as well. Witchblades are meant to belong to women, so as the first man wielding the Witchblade, things do not go well for him at all. To see him grow weak as grows out of his control is an interesting plot point.
The bad? I don’t think this story line is as strong as other story arcs in the series so far. After the Yakuza and Italian mobster bit in the first part of the story, this becomes more about personal struggles for many of the lead characters with no real bad guy. Which it is nice to delve into the psychology of these characters but there isn’t a real threat again until the very end. Maybe the Ian Nottingham story was supposed to add tension for the other characters, but I didn’t think it worked. Also, the main cast are drawn very similar. They introduce Sara’s sister who looks exactly like here (And they state they aren’t twins) and its hard to tell if the book is following Julie and Sara at points. The same can be said for Jackie and Ian. They look the same. I don’t why the illustrator does this, but I had to remember who’s wearing what shirt to figure it out. I have noticed before this point women are drawn a certain way and so are the men, where they seem like slightly altered versions of the same character.
Overall, this is good. It’s not as exciting as the two previous story arcs in volumes one and two. It explores interesting territory but is predictable. So it’s most definitely worth the read. It’s just not on par with the story telling of the previous two volumes.
3 smoothies out of four.
Overall Rating: An Interesting Tale But Not as Exciting as the Last Two Volume.