REVIEW: ‘Witchblood,’ Issue #2

Reading Time: 2 minutes

Witchblood #2

Witchblood #2 is written by Matthew Erman, illustrated by Lisa Sterle, colored by Gab Contreras, and lettered by Jim Campbell. It is published by Vault Comics.  Following the events of the first issue, a heavily wounded Yonna approaches one of her fellow witches Liana and in the process is given a new mission. Meanwhile, the Hounds of Love embark on a mission to find a divination witch so that they can find the Witch Queen Esme.

This issue delves deeper into the world of witches and vampires, splitting its time between Yonna’s recovery and the Hounds of Love’s journey. Different aspects of witchcraft are also explored, including potion making and divination-with each witch having their own different specialty. In addition to giving more depth to the world of Witchblood, this development will only whet readers’ hunger for more stories in this world. Yonna herself is unwilling to go on a quest for Esme, saying that after years of thinking, she’s willing to move on. While this comes off as somewhat selfish, it’s a nice change of pace from the immortals who bemoan their own existence. Ultimately though, circumstances force Yonna to head on the more noble path, and the last page shows that her selfish behavior is rooted in utterly human fear.

Meanwhile, the Hounds of Love are the perfect examples of “villains you love to hate,” especially their leader Paxton LaBelle. A large part of this is due to Erman painting him as an extremely pompous man who prefers to monologue about the superiority of the vampire race while “Chatthoochee” by Alan Jackson plays on the jukebox. But Sterle gives Paxton a style all his own: his tan, fringed jacket and jet black shirt serve as a nice contrast to Yonna’s more colorful ensemble. And Contreras continues to make the vampires look utterly frightening, with sallow skin, glowing golden eyes, and razor-sharp fangs. And topping off the horror element is their word balloons, which are as red and jagged as the trails of blood they leave in their wake.

The artwork in this issue also crosses through several environments, including the desert, a bar, and a fortune-telling shop. Each environment has its own unique color palette and layout. The bar, for example, is dimly lit and mostly dark blue, with flickering yellow lights. The desert, meanwhile, is colored to look like an actual desert would during the sunrise, with the exception of a spell Liana casts on Yonna. That spell takes the form of barely visible sketches that are drenched in neon. Readers will feel like they’re on a bad drug trip, which I feel was the intended effect. Liana also has the cutest assistant: a walking potted plant who could give Baby Yoda a run for his money.

Witchblood #2 fleshes out the world of its witches and vampires while providing its heroine with a new quest. It also manages to raise the stakes for Yonna, which any good story should do. I’m thoroughly hooked on this series after two issues and I hope to see where Yonna’s journey takes her.

Witchblood #2 is available wherever comics are sold.

Witchblood #2
5

TL;DR

Witchblood #2 fleshes out the world of its witches and vampires while providing its heroine with a new quest. It also manages to raise the stakes for Yonna, which any good story should do. I’m thoroughly hooked on this series after two issues and I hope to see where Yonna’s journey takes her.