Sometimes you have to go back to the beginning to see where you need to go. That’s what Sara does here as she’s given a choice from Internal Affairs – either it’s the Witchblade or the NYPD. Her journey takes her back to the Rialto Theatre where she is confronted by the Witchblade itself, and several revelations are made about herself and the choices she’s made over the years, and the effect they’ve had on her life.
The most definitive run on Witchblade comes to an end with this issue, as Ron Marz gives the fans one classy goodbye when it’s all said and done. He and Sejic tell a quiet little story here that effectively wraps up the events that began in Witchblade #144, while setting up the new direction of Sara Pezzini’s life. Her decision is an obvious one and Marz doesn’t attempt to hide that or give you uneccesary teases to the contrary. What he does do is take you through her inner conflict and hits that emotional point that makes this just as enjoyable as the past couple of issues that were action packed. This is a very character driven issue, and that can’t be done well unless the writer has established something beyond the flashy fights and monsters. Solidifying that Marz has done his job in taking this title to another level in terms of depth and quality. Now, I’m pretty sure many a reviewer is going to analyze Sara’s letter, telling you that it might parallel Marz’s own feelings about leaving the title. And they probably wouldn’t be too far off. It’s one of the best parts of the issue because of the impact it brings, and the fact that it closes and moves it forward at the same time.
This is also another wonderfully painted issue by Stjepan Sejic and deserves just as much praise for the storytelling as Marz. It’s been strong, consistent, and just great to look at for quite some time. During the scenes where the Witchblade “explained” things to Sara, you’re given something very different from the rest of the book. It was also a nice touch to have the Witchblade take a human form again, because at times you can forget that it’s actually alive.
In keeping with the spirit of the book remaining new reader friendly, there’s an interview with the new creative team of Tim Seeley and Diego Bernard who will be taking over as of next issue. Top Cow also saw fit to add a preview of Witchblade #151, as well as a timeline that hits on specific points in the series. There is also a cover gallery, and Marz is thanked by those who have worked with him on the series, as well.
There are still a few questions that pop up due to how the book ended and certain events that transpired in the issue. So without spoiling anything, I’ll just say that those questions revolved around Sara’s daughter, Hope, and her partner/boyfriend, Gleason. Since Artifacts hasn’t wrapped up yet, things about Hope might be revealed there, but things between Gleason and Sara seemed a bit abrupt by the issue’s end.
Marz is one of many writers showing that comics are a lot more than superhero books and gratuitous t & a shots scattered among the pages. His Witchblade run definitely has proven that over the years. So if you’re a longtime fan of the series, then this issue should automatically have a place in your collection. If you’re new to the series, the same goes for you, because a new direction is about to start for Sara, and this is where you get in on the ground floor!