A review of “Witchblood #1” from Vault
Spoiler-free, with some non-spoiler out-of-context images from the issue.
It’s Buffy meets Charmed, it’s vampires and witches!
Witchblood #1 has been advertised as quirky, fun, and colorful- so when I got the chance to read and review it, I couldn’t refuse!
My favorite part of this book is the art! Lisa Sterle, the artist, has the coolest color palette- mixing colors often seen in the work of someone like Jen Bartel and pairing it with the realistic, Texas-desert tones, much like seen in the comic That Texas Blood. It’s a combination I would’ve never thought would work, but she makes it work, so huge props to Sterle!
The main character’s bird, Bhu, has a few great moments here- but Bhu definitely doesn’t talk, sadly. Bhu seems to be mostly here as an accent to the main character, but I’m a sucker for the ol’ “pet sidekick that you talk to like it’s another human”. I would LOVE if we could ever get inside Bhu’s head in one issue or something. I understand the choice of not having Bhu talk, but I’d love to see this pet sidekick develop as their own character too, and not just accent the main character.
Yonna, the main character, is definitely a young mix of Wynonna Earp and Harley Quinn. She has no shame talking to herself, or Bhu, as much as she wants, and she has the “well, if we gotta do it, let’s f*cking do it” vibes. Doesn’t matter if it’s shady or weird- she’ll do what it takes. Though, it is amusing to see her -try- to put boundaries up- she tells Bhu, “No eye peckin’- and no mur-”. Moments like that are where I feel the most Wynonna Earp vibes- loner in a desert climate, trying to do what it takes to survive, and -trying- to be a good person when she can. In other moments she has huge Harley Quinn vibes- she’s wanting to do her own thing, expecting others to be cool with it, and then when people aren’t, she doesn’t completely understand why they aren’t. There are many moments where you could play a game of “Who said it? Yonna or Harley Quinn” and you’d be convinced half of these were Harley lines. However, this character has much more actual innocence than Harley does, so she’s not AS shamelessly -murdery- as Harley is often written to be. For me, I’m not sure this characterization works for me- for me, it’s like I’ve read all this dialogue before with the other characters I mentioned and.. I want something different. I want someone different, ya know? I love Wynonna Earp and I love Harley Quinn, but I don’t need another character so similar to those. I want Yonna to be her own character, and right now, Yonna just reminds me so much of these other two characters. But this is the first issue, and dialogue and characterization are things that can get better issue to issue as the story unfolds and we get to know Yonna more.
Plot-wise, it definitely dragged a bit for me at the beginning- but the ending leaves on a strong note, making sure that if the book started to lose you a bit, that the last page pulled you right back in. I’d like to see more world-building in the upcoming issues because I think that’s one other thing that was missing for me- more world-building. To be fair, this is the first issue, so that’s not really fair to hold against it, so that’s why I’m more looking forward to it than judging it on not happening. I think this book has the potential to create an entire universe that people are invested in. Once those vampires arrive- THAT’S when this book got truly interesting for me. THAT’S when I had to finish it not just because I wanted to read and review it, but because I was genuinely curious what was going to happen next. At first, I felt like I could care less about the plot, but then when I actually got glimpses of the plot and the ever so-prominent line of “she spilled her WITCHBLOOD”, I was like- but wait, what does that mean?? I need more! I want to care, but I don’t know HOW to yet- tell me why this matters!! I really hope we get more groundwork about what's actually been going on with Yonna and this world of witches, witch hunters, vampires, etc.
If you love things like Buffy, Charmed, Wynonna Earp, and Harley Quinn, and don’t mind a character that is almost too similar to the latter two names, then you’ll love Yonna, and you’ll love this issue! This definitely is -very- tailored to those of us that are fans of those shows/characters, but it is almost -too- tailored for me. I do think I will give this another issue because this shows so much potential for world-building, fun, and seeing Yonna grow as a character. This issue also shows the most potential for what matters most- creating its own universe. If it can do that, then the character development and dialogue will follow. Come for a fun time, stay for the potential of this growing bigger than we thought it could be!
Your Friendly Neighborhood Bi gives this:
3 out of 5 Finger Guns
(because I'm bi)
You can find Your Friendly Neighborhood Bi, Lauren, on Twitter: