Anime Reporter returns for yet another instalment of Witch Hunter manhwa action with Volumes 3-4.
Well, Volumes 1 and 2 certainly got the ball rolling, with adventure and laughs aplenty. Volume 3 sees Tasha and co heading back to WH HQ to debrief after their latest mission. Things aren’t looking so well for Tasha in that regard, having failed to kill his opponent in his most recent encounter, but that really is the least of his concerns. Several WH-friendly witches have recently been gunned down in cold blood and everyone knows that Tasha is the only magical gunslinger around.
Charged with murder most foul, Tasha is taken to court and even he has to admit that the crime scenes reek of his signature style. We all know better though, right? After all, aside from his sister and his money, Tasha really couldn’t find the motivation necessary to murder his comrades. That, and possibly a few ethical quibbles standing in his way. It isn’t long before we’re treated to a sneak peek at the real murderer though and, to be honest, he actually does resemble Tasha quite a bit, (apart from the colour scheme), right down to the pumpkin puppet supporter.
Tasha’s trial is put on hold and he’s allowed to resume WH duty when a suitably large disaster calls for all hands on deck. He’s even treated to a few upgrades for his gear and, after receiving some fantastically vague advice from the resident soothsayer, he’s sent on his merry way, which just happens to include direct conflict with his dubious doppelganger.
And what a fight this turns out to be! Sharpshooting action abounds, but we also get quite an enlightening peek at Tasha’s history with his teacher and even his first encounter with Halloween. While the two marksman duke it out, their identical supporters do likewise and (Tasha’s) Halloween undergoes a pretty radical transformation that brings up a whole host of new questions. Undergoing a pretty significant change in appearance, Halloween’s regeneration, (I swear, it’s like this series is asking for at least one Doctor Who reference per review), also seems to bring about a total change in personality. For- the time being, Tasha will probably be more concerned with his shootout as his foe shares all of his skills, but seems to know a few shortcuts that shouldn’t be possible for a non-witch.
Volume 04 focuses quite a bit on this clash, but also offers some nice behind-the-scenes action with witches causing mayhem and destruction on an apparently all new level and meeting for some incredibly ominous and shady meetings. You know the kind, everyone sitting at an incredibly long table in a room apparently made largely out of concealing shadows. Wonderful clichés aside, it seems that the head honchos of the witch-world mean business, and bad things are on the horizon.
We’re also briefly introduced to yet another rival of Tasha’s at WH headquarters, in the form of Cooga. While Tasha seems to rub quite a few of his peers the wrong way, Cooga is on a whole other level, with neither of the two afraid to stoop too low to outdo each other.
(The whole “Witches in over the top hats and swimsuits with skirts attached” motif may start to make it hard to keep track of characters a bit down the line.)
Witch Hunter Volumes 03 and 04 continue on with great humour and an ever growing plot. Things are getting truly interesting but we’ll have to keep reading to see just how well they play out in the future. Volumes 03 and 04 are currently available in English by Seven Seas Entertainment. You can check out more info on Seven Seas here.
Plot Development: 8.5
Impressive Villains: 7.5
Character Development: 7
77% – “From Strength to Strength!” – Witch Hunter continues on in solid form, offering incredibly likeable characters and some very sharp humour. While a lot of the tension right now seems to rely on foreshadowing and partially-obscured villains, only time will tell if these slightly overused devices will pay off. Right now though, it’s a good story and a lot of fun!