Anime Reporter returns to the world of Witch Hunter, the heavy-hitting fantasy manhwa fresh out of Jung-Man Cho’s imagination. As you’ve more than likely noticed from the title, I’ll be taking a look at Volumes 07-08, (Chapters 25 – 38), of the series, so if you’re unfamiliar with the plot thus far, you’re probably better off taking a look at my first take on the series here.
When last we saw young Tasha, our fearless and money-grubbing protagonist, he was facing down quite a few mighty witches and the fight is far from over. Volume 07 sees Tasha giving some witches a taste of his power and showing why he’s top dog, with a few nice examples of his rivalry with his fellow witch hunters. Things take a peculiar turn when Halloween dukes it out with a witch’s supporter and we’re given a rather unexpected clue about her origins.
When all some more or less taken care of, one last foe remains, Rose, a witch with the power to create a virtually unlimited army made of herself. Making matters worse, she has to be defeated quickly or a teammate’s life could be lost. The battles thus far are interesting enough, but perhaps not enough to carry the story. Luckily, when Tasha is pushed to the point of desperation, he taps into some powers he perhaps shouldn’t and becomes a lot more interesting in the process. Tapping into an untold source of magical energy, it all proves a wee bit too much for his sanity and just as the last witch falls, the witch hunters are faced with the task of taking down a maniacal Tasha.
All in all, volumes 07 and 08 carry the story along just a little at a time, but are mainly made up of a few big battles, with a few side stories composed almost entirely of other battles. We’re given a few more glances into the behind the scenes machinations of the sinister witches North and South, but at this stage, the scene has long since been set and it’s becoming far less interesting to read about these characters so entirely unrelated to the current events of the story. Halloween and Tasha seem to be undergoing a fairly predictable relationship change now that she’s been given a female form and a ridiculously skimpy outfit and it seems like only a matter of time until they become each other’s romantic interests.
Volumes 07 and 08 make little progress from the scantily and unusually clad female characters who are all represented as either big eyed preteens or buxom, long-legged glamour models. While it’s hardly unusual for female comic characters to be sexualised, in this instance the degradation goes just a little bit further, making it genuinely difficult to tell witches apart as the number of bizarre skin-tight swimsuits and flowing ribbons on the battlefield reach well into double digits.
Witch Hunter Volumes 07 and 08 step up the action but show little signs of engaging with the series’ characters and the plot pacing has slowed to a crawl. As ever, there’s the hint of big plot points on the horizon, but they’d best hurry.
Witch Hunter Volumes 07-08 are currently available from Seven Seas in English, Korean and French.
Plot Development: 5.5
69% – “Losing Momentum”– Witch Hunter manhwa volumes 07-08 put a lot of action on display but the story comes to a crawl as a result. The strengths of this series have been its humour and the interaction of its characters. As these factors lose steam, the action scenes can’t hope to compete and we’d best hope that Witch Hunter can get back on track soon.