Witchblade #97


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Witchblade #97


  • Words: Ron Marz
  • Art: Mike Choi
  • Inks: Rob Hunter
  • Colors: Sonia Oback
  • Story Title: Old Habits
  • Publisher: Image Comics/Top Cow
  • Price: $2.99
  • Release Date: Apr 19, 2006

An old love interest crashes Sara’s date with Gleason and brings new troubles. The wielder of the Witchblade just can’t catch a break….

Writer Ron Marz proves, with this title at least, that he has a Midas touch – every story turns to gold. Here he gives readers a "worst-date-ever" story while simultaneously barreling Witchblade on to its 100th issue.

Ian Nottingham breaks up Sara’s date with a vengeance and the reasons for it are hard on his heels…a team of Yakuza assassins. Of course, up against Ian, Sara, and Gleason the killers don’t stand a chance. Once the fight is over, the hard part kicks in for Sara – getting answers about the killers from Ian and trying to both explain and hide her past from Gleason.

Sara’s willingness to give Ian a little help with his predicament, though, shows indications of going very wrong. It looks like she may get dragged into Ian’s mess up to her neck. Or maybe over her head.

One of the things that is quickly becoming apparent with this title is that Ron Marz has carefully planned and crafted every story from his first day on issue #80. Events both small and large from the previous story arcs are weaving together and the much larger picture is coming into view. At the same time, each story arc and, really, individual issue is an enjoying and satisfying read on its own. #97 is no exception, as Marz builds dramatic and romantic tension to the point where it sparks.

Since his start on the title, Marz has had an able aide in artist Mike Choi. It is sad news to hear that Choi will be leaving Witchblade after issue #100 but he has certainly left his own stamp on the characters. The thing to love most about his style is the subtle, little touches he adds, such as reflections or small gestures. He is also one of the best artists I’ve seen with facial expressions and body language. This is particularly noticeable when he clearly contrasts the height and builds of Nottingham and Gleason…and then makes sure that the reader sees that Gleason notices as well. The sequence is pricelessly funny.

With each and every issue, Ron Marz and Mike Choi give fans every reason to love Witchblade. The stories are character driven with fascinating plots and dialogue to draw the reader in. Although headed for a landmark 100th issue, it is still not too late for new readers to jump on. Marz has given no sign of letting go of the wheel anytime soon and this is one fun drive.

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