If you’ve been eager to get back into the Witcher series, wait no longer! The Witcher: Of Flesh and Flame promises to be one of the smoothest transitions from video game to comic books this year. Fans of the Witcher series will delight in this new expansion on the game series from CD Projekt! We have an incredible team behind this issue – the story is written by Aleksandra Motkya with the art and main cover designed by Marianna Strychowska, the coloring by Lauren Affe and the lettering by Steve Dutro. This first issue was published by Mike Richardson with Megan Walker as its editor, Jason Rall as the designer, and Allyson Haller as the digital art technician.
The Witcher: Of Flesh and Flame offers the reader a seamless venture into the game world. Character temperaments, game references, and general atmosphere throughout the issue were consistent with what you’d come to be familiar with in the video game series. Though this is not The Witcher’s first venture into comic book land, it was a rather compelling one that kept me intrigued as I flipped through the pages.
Story Quickie (No spoilers here!)
The general plot line of this issue is as follows:
- Geralt enters Novigrad & meets up with an old acquaintance after dealing with some rough fellows at an Inn,
- He agrees to said acquaintance’s requested task of checking in on his daughter potentially entranced Cecilia.
- Geralt plays a game of “Whose Knocking on Cecilia’s Tower Door?” and gets a little more than he bargained for.
While a lot can be said about trapping the “apple of his eye” daughter in a tower, let’s focus on the introduction to the next three books in this series.
With how little action there was in this issue (aside from Geralt throwing a few people into tables), I am pleasantly surprised with the story foundation. We have a brief reminder of how many people just do not like Geralt, a few fan service-y panels of Cecilia, and a surprise appearance by a friend of Geralt’s. Yet the climbing action of the plot was not forced nor was it altogether boring. The first issue leaves you with anticipation of the next bit of the puzzle, and I am eager to read what is coming next.
Tone, plot signaling, and more!
Volume 1’s general tone primarily aims to set up the reader by concreting the general plot and offering the readers a solid environment to take root in. Just like in the game, Geralt’s demeanor is quick and to the point – there’s no dire circumstance in this issue where violence is key, but a slow burn beginning typically tends to be one of my favorite introductions. I appreciate the series that take the time to settle the audience in before tossing them off the ledge into the thick of the action. This first issue does a wonderful job of giving us the basic details in a beautiful way.
It was quite a surprise for me to find that the writer of The Witcher 3: The Wild Hunt’s, Aleksandra Motyka, joined in to write Of Flesh and Flame’s script. The dialogue perfectly complements the art style of Marianna Strychowska. Page by page I was entranced by the perfect use of hue and the translation of Geralt’s personality into the pages. I felt his arrogance through his body language, and Motyka’s dialogue allowed chances for his characteristic sarcasm to drip through. Lauren Affe’s gradient shifting pairs well with Strychowska’s fascinating art. This team collaboration is easily one of my favorites from the comics I’ve read this year as everything blends so seamlessly into one another. The illustrations and color scheme sold me from the moment I picked up the comic. The script writing and character detail only added to my delight.
I’m curious to see how the next three issues will go, art and dialogue wise. Since this issue was primarily laying the groundwork for intense action later, I am excited to see how Affe and Strychowska stylize action sequences. I am a reader of crazily detailed horror comics. Witcher: Of Flesh and Flame was a break away from bloody guts and screaming ghosts. Most of the times I enjoy splashes of “hot” or vivid colors juxtaposed along the purple/blue hues of the backdrops, but for the general pace of this issue, Affe’s color scheme worked perfectly alongside Motyka’s story.
Wrap it up, wrap it up
After reading this issue, I felt compelled to immerse myself back into the series on my console. It left a lasting impression, and I spent the next 2 hours watching Let’s Plays of The Witcher 3: Wild Hunt. It was nice reliving the world and imagining the issue’s storyline alongside the gameplay.
The Witcher: Of Flesh and Flame hits your local comic book store on December 19. What’s was your favorite cut-scene in the Witcher series?