Witchblade/Darkminds: The Return of Paradox

    (Image, 2004)
™ and © 2004 Top Cow Productions and Dreamwave Productions

A visually dazzling book that looks like each frame was ripped from unused scenes in a highly regarded Japanese animated film, Witchblade/Darkminds nonetheless gets off to a few false starts before finding its feet. In a novel take on the inter–company crossover, the book doesn’t try to mesh two irreconcilable worlds, utilize phantom wormholes that happen to dump Character X in Situation Y, or pretend two separate scenarios just happen to occupy the same planet. Instead, Witchblade star Sara Pezzini is conspicuous, but the Witchblade itself has fallen into the hands of some weapon developers in the day–after–tomorrow future of Darkminds.

When not treading the same ground as Ghost in the Shell, it provides some neat introspection, though it’s not entirely clear why the murderer persists in decimating his/her victims when it could go straight for the target. Make no mistake, this book is more for Darkminds fans than Witchblade readers, and there are a few points that will leave the novice reader in the dark. But you have to admire David Wohl’s plain declaration at the start of the book that the rules have changed, inviting a sense of dark change before the story even begins. Hopefully the art is consistent, however, to the main series, as Lou Kang and background artist James Raiz do a remarkable job. Dreamwave is lucky to have them.

— Brendan McGinley

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1 copy available for $9.99
 David WohlLou Kang, James Raiz