Graphic Novel/Comics Review

Thessaly: Witch for Hire

(2005) Bill Willingham and Shawn McManus, Titan Books, 7.99, trdpbk, 96pp, ISBN 1-845-76194-4

From the pages of Sandman and The Sandman Presents comes Thessaly in this trade paperback collection of her four-issue mini-series. One of the nicest parts of the series were the lovely covers by Tara McPherson. Shawn's artwork is good, but I'd love to see McPherson drawing interiors. Anyway, though it's not terribly important to the contents of this issue, there is another main protagonist, named Fetch, who first appeared with Thessaly in The Sandman Presents, which tale can be found in the collection Taller Tales. So we join the action in media res, as they say, and discover that two years have passed since Thess and Fetch's last meeting, and that for those two years Thessaly (who, don't forget, is about 2000 years old) has been hunted by monsters. About 30 of them. All of which she's safely killed. Then Fetch turns up on her doorstep and let's her know that it is he who has been arranging for these visitations. Apparently he's been hiring her out as a monster killer, without her knowledge! Fetch himself is an empty shell that houses the dead revenants of all of Thessaly's victims. Now he's bitten off more than she can chew, making her the prey of a Tharmic Null, a completely unstoppable force. So Thessaly must travel through various realms trying to find a way to kill the unkillable... This is a nice little romp, but nothing special. Willingham is very much on form, but nowhere near as inventive as he is with Fables (see Fables: The Mean Seasons and Fables: Storybook Love) . Please yourself.

Tony Chester

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