Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Review: Widdershins

I love history. I love adventure stories. I love just about any tale in which magic is an everyday, normal thing, accepted by society. I love wacky time travel narratives. And I love webcomics. So when all of these things are rolled up into the same gorgeous package, I can’t resist.
Widdershins is a comic by Kate Ashwin that has been updating since October 24th, 2011 every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Excellently drawn and in full color (except for a few Q&A sketches between chapters), it takes place in alternate reality England, in the fictional Victorian city of Widdershins. From what I can gather, it seems to be located somewhere between London and Manchester (which doesn’t narrow it down much, that’s like saying that it’s somewhere between Los Angeles and Sacramento).
But the interesting thing about Widdershins is that it is the location of an anchor of magic. This means that those who have the talent for magic can perform it more easily there. The academy in Widdershins teaches potential wizards how to draw circles and speak the correct words in order to summon spirits.
One of the wonderful things about the comic is that there isn’t just one main character. One chapter features a wizard and a bounty hunter, and the next, a couple of buskers with unusual abilities. And another stars the most promising cake baker from the year 2013. These characters are not featured in the same chapter, but they do brush up against one another.
The only thing that makes me sad about this comic is that there are only four complete chapters. Of course, I’d be sad if there were fourteen. I could read this comic for years and never have enough. It’s wonderful.
It’s a gorgeous, well written, exciting webcomic, that has everything I love about webcomics. I highly recommend it! And now I’m going to go and reread it. Again.

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