Review: Witch Doctor: Mal Practice #1

A comic review article by: Jason Sacks

ADVANCE REVIEW! Witch Doctor: Mal Practice #1 will go on sale Wednesday, November 28, 2012.

 

The Witch Doctor is back! Brandon Seifert and Lukas Ketner's mystic MD is returns in the pages of Image Comics and he's having more problems with the supernatural than ever. 

See, after a kind of rotten day at work trying to exorcize a particularly obnoxious demon from a kid's body, Dr. Morrow does what most any of us would do – wander to a nearby bar for a drink to take his mind off of his work. While at the bar, the Doctor meets a beautiful redhead and the pair go back to Morrow's apartment and then --

 

 

-- well, actually, the Doctor doesn't remember what happened aside from the fact that this beautiful ginger wears a bra that matches her hair… until that is, he catches a very different sort of STD from this strange woman and a very odd battle ends up happening in Dr. Morrow's apartment.

 

 

It's a fight unlike any I've seen in comics, with Lukas Ketner delivering one of the most flat-out unnerving images I can ever remember seeing in comics. The ginger babe's tongue is all kinds of spooky, and Ketner's depictions of it frankly creeped the fuck right out of me.

 

 

Brandon Seifert's scripts are lots of fun and deliver a whole series of unexpected bizarre moments. And Ketner's art is plain perfect for this series. Lukas draws in a very well-rendered, clean style that's unusual for horror comics. It's a straightforward style that resembles the art in super-hero comics more than the art we're used to seeing in horror comics. His work looks realistic – settings feel real, characters are well drawn and have realistic proportions, and the book isn't rendered with the deep, intense blacks that are common with so many horror comics in this deeply Mignola-influenced era.

 

 

But it's exactly that sort of seemingly mundane style that makes this story much spookier. These crazy bizarre mystic creatures look like they could walk off of any street in Rhode Island and into anyone's apartment, which only accentuates the strangeness of their appearances. Dr. Morrow's assistant Penny Dreadful is especially spooky and fun -- she looks like a normal sort of emo girl until we see her in action, claws raised and jaw ready for a fight.

This first issue of the new Witch Doctor mini brings all kinds of mystery and strangeness to the comics page, and does that in an original and fresh way. I'm so glad the Doctor is in!

 


 

Jason Sacks is Publisher of Comics Bulletin. Follow him at @jasonsacks, email him at jason.sacks@comicsbulletin.com or friend him on Facebook.

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