THE MAGICIANS #3
Writer: Lilah Sturges
Illustrator: Plus Bak
Inker: Mariano Taibo
Colorist: Gabriel Cassata
Letterer: Mike Fiorentino
Publisher: Archaia/BOOM! Studios
As this series goes along, I actually find myself liking it more and more. This issue picks up right after the reveal at the end of the second issue where we found Sophie had somehow had come back to life after accidentally burning herself to death with her own spell. I like that the rest of the characters don't know what to make of it and even go and dig up the remains of Sophie from the previous issue to confirm whether or not Sophie had revived. This paired with the teachers talking about some incoming threat that may have actually infiltrated the school, really adds to the dread that the series is doing a fantastic job of building.
Other series that have magical elements I find often rely on the spectacle of the magic too much which can be dangerous because often magic doesn't have well defined rules/limitations and can seem to be a convenient out. I like with this series that the magic and school are not really the point and actually reminds me a lot of a series like Buffy the Vampire Slayer. The focus is on the students and the consequences of their actions as both youth and as magicians.
I do hope the plot unravels a bit more in the next couple of issues as although I do like that we've spent plenty of time with the characters, it's time to flesh out the rest of the school and plot. The only minor gripe I have is that the romance aspect introduced with Emily felt tacked on and given she is a trans character I feel like her having to deal with the fear of rejection because of that on top of the usual anxiety one would feel should be something that should be explored with more nuance and care. This might get explored in further issues but here it felt rushed.
The art is simplistic but conveys the emotions and expressions of the characters well and I find that paired with the well written dialogue, the panels and conversations flow very well and I can almost see the story unfold as a tv show in my mind. The art actually reminds me a lot of Michael Lark around the time he was doing Gotham Central which is actually a huge compliment given how much of a fan of him I am.
Overall this was a decent entry and I'm looking forward to seeing more.