Comic Connoisseur: Wytches is a top-notch father-daughter thriller

There was a time when the simple idea of a witch existing was enough to send a chill up your spine. Long before the bubbling cauldrons, the broomsticks, and the poorly exfoliated green complexions, a witch was the most terrifying supernatural entity of them all, rivalling even zombies and vampires.

Nowadays, though, these enchantresses are depicted with the same terrifying tact as a Twilight film. The only witches we see depicted today are either child-friendly or overly sexualized. However, Scott Snyder and Jock’s Wytches seeks to change that for good. At long last it would seem that the witch is getting a long-overdue makeover — or better yet, a de-beautification.

Wytches follows the story of Charlie Rooks, a children’s book author who moves his family to the remote town of Litchfield, New Hampshire after his younger teenage daughter is accused of murdering her bully. However, when his daughter, Sailor, goes missing, Charlie embarks on a feverish hunt to find her. Nothing can prepare the desperate father as he comes face-to-face with black magic, an eerie bald woman, and the ancient evil of the wytches.

At its core, Wytches is a story about a father, a daughter, and their special bond together. Part of what makes this story fresh in comparison to others is that the father is significantly younger than what is usually depicted. He is a young dad, trying his best to do right while still being prone to mistakes and bad decisions. Sailor is also a well-written character who is depicted realistically with her many traumas and psychoses.

Together, the two share in many heartfelt moments that allow readers to become invested in them and all the more concerned with their well-being throughout the story.

With a fresh and nightmare-inducing new look, the creators successfully revamp witches for a modern audience. What was once laughable is now enough to leave you scarred for the foreseeable future and in need of a night light. Jock’s designs are nothing less than the fuel that make up the most viscerally harrowing of night terrors.

Jock’s artwork also succeeds in building suspense throughout out the story. Chaotic and dynamic panel layouts help to depict the twisted story in an engaging way. Each scene is more captivatingly intense than the last, and each will leave readers eager to see what happens next. 

Wytches is well-written horror thriller which can stand on a petrifying pedestal with the best of the genre. By peeling back the layers of beautified fluff that have long kept witches away, Snyder and Jock reinstate these old-school occultists back to their place as the supernatural champions of the horror genre.