- Mangaka : Daisuke Igarashi
- Publisher : Seven Seas
- Genre : Drama, Fantasy, Supernatural
- Published : May 3, 2022
Even though different countries have different folklore, some beings occasionally pop up in multiple mythos. Of course, they are not exactly the same. It is perhaps more appropriate to state that multiple mythos have their own variations of renowned creatures. Witches are a good example of this. Ranging from old women riding brooms to haunt the night to beings who use dark magic and human sacrifices, a witch’s appearance and description depends on where they are from. Daisuke Igarashi’s Witches: The Complete Collection tells a few interesting stories about them.
As the title suggests, Witches: The Complete Collection (Omnibus) is a compilation of short stories about witches. These witches hail from different cultures and backgrounds, yet all of them desire something dark and daunting. This collection, penned by Daisuke Igarashi, the same creator of the much-acclaimed Children of the Sea, won the Excellence Prize at the 2004 Japan Media Arts Festival. Now, Seven Seas has made this masterpiece available to us in English.
1. Beautifully Terrifying Short Stories
The short stories featured in this omnibus are all centered on dark magic and witchcraft, hence the title. All of them tackle hatred and curses, and none of them ends with everybody happy. The hexes and curses shown in the manga are also shown in a mystical way. It’s not terrifying in a way similar to Junji Ito’s works, but terrifying in the sense that these stories are rooted in something real. They give a sense that somewhere out there such a craft is being utilized, even though it is invisible to us.
2. A Good Variety
While the central theme of the collection is witches, the stories themselves are interestingly varied. It starts with the story of a young British girl who awakens her mystical power and uses it to seek revenge toward the person who broke her heart. The next story, however, is centered on colonialism and shamanism. At this point, the manga gives a sense that all the stories will be about dark endings, but the next few stories disprove that. They tell the stories of a somewhat gossiping witch and a pure, loving witch that saves the world.
1. Great for More Mature Audiences
This omnibus takes the theme of witches seriously. It doesn’t give the idea a modern re-imagination like most shonen or shojo manga do. Instead, it tells the story of witchcraft as it is told in old tales – through the lens of reality with hints of mysticism. As such, readers who normally enjoy action-packed stories with visible magic powers may not appreciate its contents. On the other hand, more mature audiences may find themselves charmed by its simple yet alluring storytelling.
Witches: The Complete Collection (Omnibus) is a beautifully woven collection of mystical stories. Even though it isn’t for everybody given its manner of storytelling, it definitely is a great read for the proper audience.
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