By Ron Marz (writer), Stjepan Sejic (artist), Troy Peteri (letters)
The Story: Don’t you hate it when problems seem to hit all at once? Sara does. First she gets investigated by Internal Affairs (who now seem to know way more than they should about the Witchblade), David Irons is being his usual obtuse and unhelpful self, and an ancient Babylonian goddess of chaos is trying to kill her. Some days, eh?
What’s Good: The more I read Witchblade, the more I realize that Ron Marz and Stjepan Sejic are one of my favorite creative duos of all time. My love of Sejic’s work is already extensively documented but-aside from just being beautiful–one of the consistently best parts of his work on this series is just how well Sejic complements Marz’s work, and how vividly he brings to life the fantastic and outlandish creatures and situations that Sara encounters every month.
It is also quite refreshing that Marz and Top Cow are sticking to their guns when it comes to keeping Witchblade totally separate from the Artifacts event. While that does make for some slightly odd continuity for someone like me who is completely invested in the TCU, it’s easy to see that the benefits far outweigh any minor hiccups that might be encountered. Allowing both titles to stand completely on their own is a great decision for people who only care to read one or the other. (I will say that, once Artifacts goes from an event to an ongoing after issue ##13, I hope we’ll see a bit more crossover happening.)
What’s Not So Good: While all three plot threads going on in this issue are well written and interesting, I can’t help but feel like it was a lot to address all at once. There is something to be said for giving multiple issues to deal with at a time; it can raise the stakes and make each problem that much more threatening. In this case, though, they all feel a little too disparate for my taste. I would have much preferred seeing the IA investigation as its own arc, so we could focus on the ramifications of that issue. Then again, I’m well aware that Marz is trying to wrap up a lot of loose ends here before taking his final bow in #150, so I don’t mind cutting him some slack on that end.
Conclusion: Although it feels a little over-packed in terms of plot threads, this is still a very good issue. Marz and Sejic continue to excel together, and I can’t wait to see more of Tiamat and what she can do.
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