Overview

Witchblade #151

Review

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Witchblade #151

Credits

  • Words: Tim Seeley
  • Art: Diego Bernard
  • Inks: Fred Benes
  • Colors: Arif Priant
  • Story Title: Unbalanced Pieces
  • Publisher: Image Comics
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Jan 4, 2012

Sara Pezzini is off to a new life, and new readers are encouraged to come along.

Having moved to Chicago and started a new role as a Private Investigator, former NYPD detective Sara Pezzini (and recently returned to the sole bearer of the Witchblade) has a new life on her hands. Problem is, a person she's been investigating has surprisingly lost his. While Sara must contend with this strange turn of events, she also has to contend with her fading looks and a monstrous leech in designer boots.

This is how you relaunch a book; Seeley has gone the "Batman in The New 52" route for introducing new readers. The status quo may be new, but the character is largely unchanged from what made her work in the previous set of issues. At the same time, this could have worked as the beginning of a brand new series, and works great for new readers as such; anything and everything that needs to be explained is, and there's not a focus at all on possibly confusing backstory. Visually, Bernard, Benes, and Priant combine into a enjoyable visual feast that works great for the character, and only at the end do you realize the whole issue went largely by without Sara donning her full-on, traditional "spiked bikini" body armor.

Unrelated to the main plot of the issue, but connected to the larger Top Cow Reborn "event," is a short story of Jackie Estacado, The Darkness, explaining to returning readers what happened in Artifacts, the big Top Cow universe crossover that seems to have resulted in a "New 52" reboot of the world; some things and events have played out the same, but others are different. It's a short but sweet story with nice art, and fits thematically with the book's themes of new beginnings, even if it's only tangentially related via the Witchblade's relation to the event.

There's a substantial amount of back matter in the book, featuring a timeline of the Witchblade continuity (with notable events marked with the issue they occurred in, alongside relevant trade paperbacks where readers can buy them). Additionally, a text piece by Tim Seeley goes in depth on a story whose ramifications may be lost at the moment but will have an effect down the road (or just affect an aspect of Witchblade that novice readers might not catch on). Finally, a breakdown on how the cover was crafted gives a good insight into the artistic relaunch of a title and how the cover portrays that in more ways than one would think.

Seeley, a master of the horrifying, has instead pulled something beautiful off; his new run on Witchblade has successfully relaunched the character for new readers while working with the strong parts of the past.

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