I don’t normally like single issue comics, and prefer to wait for the trades (a collection of 4-6 issues in one volume), but I wanted to give Wytches a go, and now, goddammit, I need to get it in singles because I can’t wait for the trades. This is a creepy and beautifully drawn and coloured comic and I’m really glad I picked it up.
One of the reasons I don’t like singles is there’s just not enough, but I thought this set up the story to come really well. The first couple of pages are confusing at first (in a good, horror-claustrophobic way) but then they very quickly become very creepy. I absolutely love the colour work on these pages (colouring done by Matt Hollingsworth). This short, sharp set-up means the story can slow down a little, introduce the main characters and the creep to come, while retaining momentum.
Without being spoilery, the story focuses on Sailor, a teenage girl who has just moved with her parents because something bad happened in her old town. Something she thinks she caused (you find out in a flashback what happened). She’s nervous about starting a new school, and if the people here ‘know about her’. And all the while there seems to be something out there, watching. As Synder writes in an essay at the back, the wytches in Wytches aren’t pointy hats and broomsticks, but are “huge and ancient and primal and deeply evil’ and are waiting in the woods. Though you do get to know Sailor’s dad, you find out very little about her mum, but I suspect she’ll have a bigger part to play in what’s happening in the future.
I love the artwork. The splashy first pages give way to a more traditional comic book style that has a really good use of overlapping panels, and mostly deep, dark colour.
It gorgeous to look at, creepy, and ends on a really annoying cliff-hanger. I definitely recommend this one for fans of horror.