Overview

Witch Doctor: Mal Practice #4

Review

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Witch Doctor: Mal Practice #4

Credits

  • Words: Brandon Seifert
  • Art: Lukas Ketner
  • Colors: Andy Troy
  • Publisher: Image/Skybound
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Feb 27, 2013

The phrase “internal struggle” takes on a whole new, creepier meaning as Doc Morrow gets up close and personal with his innards!

New questions arise even as dangerous steps are taken to eradicate the Strigoi virus from Dr. Morrow’s body in the latest issue of Skybound’s Witch Doctor: Mal Practice. Brandon Seifert and Lukas Ketner once again turn in a shiver-inducing chapter in Morrow’s harrowing, side-splitting race against a malevolent supernatural disease.

Overall, the danger is much more immediate and at times disturbingly intimate in this second volume and issue #4 continues this welcome trend. Not only are fans treated to Ketner’s grotesque, truly visceral interpretation of the human body’s inner workings but Seifert seeds this issue with clues hinting that Morrow’s relationships with his associates Eric Gast and Penny Dreadful may be much more complex and perhaps even darker than they appear on the surface.

What kind of hold does Morrow have over Penny that even her tragic host is willing to kill for him? What does Morrow fear so much about his rival, that he can’t trust her even after she saves his life? And just what the hell was that weird blazing light erupting from Eric during the escape from Nostrum and his henchwomen? Although there's no doubting Morrow is on the side of the angels, his integrity may be in question. Like all of our favourite know-it-alls - Gandalf and Doctor Who, each in their own way come to mind - Morrow excels at manipulation and relishes doling out knowledge and important tidbits of information as he sees fit. If Seifert and Ketner have succeeded at anything with volume two of their horror-comedy romp, it’s their expansion of Morrow’s bizarre, twisted milieu in such a way as to bring their audience ever closer to their vision. It`s the kind of intelligent, well-crafted 360 degree approach to storytelling that creates a truly immersive escape for audiences – and it happens all too rarely nowadays.

A special tip of the hat goes to colorist extraordinaire Andy Troy for his first-rate work on this series. I’ve spent a lot of time raving about the writers and artists in this column but top-notch colorists can really elevate the story to the next level. With a robust, often rough-around-the-edges style like Ketner’s to contend with, Troy’s colors on Witch Doctor are sorely underrated and it’s a true pleasure to experience his talent.

With the true power behind Nostrum’s occult physiological assault on Morrow still to be revealed, the final two issues of this latest installment of Witch Doctor are sure to be a grand, strange trip, if one that's ending far too soon.

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