By Ron Marz (writer), Stjepan Sejic (art), Troy Peteri (letters)

The Story: Intrepid reporter Gretchen Fullmer is on the trail of a hot story: a female knight in armor (or was it a female superhero in tights?) was spotted fighting a dragon (and/or evil robot) in the sewers of New York. ‘Gretch’ is determined to get to the bottom of the reports, but will Sara help or hinder her quest for the truth?

What’s Good: Stjepan Sejic back on a regular Witchblade issue? That makes me want to do the Happy Snoopy Dance, especially since this outing is not disappointing in the slightest. In addition to capturing Sara’s voice in his usual excellent manner, Marz does a great job of giving Sejic some fantastic set pieces, action sequences, and splash pages to go nuts with. (The two full-page spreads of Sara-as-knight and Sara-as-superhero are particularly impressive.)

The issue itself is a one-shot Rashomon style tale of multiple witnesses explaining their own version of Sara’s sewerside encounter. It reminds me quite a bit of the short film “Have I Got a Story For You!” from the Batman: Gotham Knight DVD (which, if you haven’t seen, I highly recommend by the way.) The great fun here isn’t just the dramatic irony of knowing something the two witnesses don’t, it’s in seeing how they perceive Sara and the Witchblade in action. And of course, we’re also left wondering just how truthful Sara’s own account is, given who she’s telling it to.

What’s Not So Good: No complaints at all here. Much like a “Doctor-lite” episode of Doctor Who, neither Sara herself nor any of the usual main Witchblade characters have a prominent role in this issue. That works entirely to the advantage of the story though, and makes Sara’s appearance at the end that much more significant. I only hope Marz and company keep the multi-perspective storyline going at least through the next issue or two; it made for a wonderfully fun and refreshing take on our favorite Artifact bearer.

Conclusion: A wonderful issue, well-scripted and beautifully illustrated. It’s also quite a lot of fun, which is something that–quite understandably, given all the sturm und drang going on in the TCU at the moment–has been lacking lately. This issue was able to capture some of that fun without sacrificing excitement or tension.

Grade: A-


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