Wanda Maximoff has dealt with the demons of her past and is ready to use her power to help others in Marvel’s Scarlet Witch #1!
Scarlet Witch #1
- Steve Orlando
- Sara Pichelli, Elisabetta D’amico
- VC’s Cory Petit
- Cover Artist:
- Russell Dauterman
- Release Date:
- Matthew Wilson
It’s been a while since the last time Wanda Maximoff, aka the Scarlet Witch, had her own ongoing series. In that time, the character has skyrocketed in popularity due partly to her ever-increasing presence in the MCU and to some of the significant wrinkles in her complicated comic history. The character has been responsible for and endured some traumatic events. Scarlet Witch #1, written by Steve Orlando with art by Sara Pichelli, inks by Elisabetta D’amico, colors by Matthew Wilson, and letters by Cory Petit, establishes an exciting new start for the fan-favorite character.
In recent years, Wanda Maximoff has faced her history with both Chthon and mutantkind. These stories saw her break free from the influence Chthon had over her and become the Redeemer for mutantdom instead of the Pretender. This issue takes full advantage of Wanda’s fresh start. The premise for this series hinges on Wanda deciding to use all her power to help those who cannot help themselves. “If your need is great and your hope is gone, there you will meet the… SCARLET WITCH” is a killer tagline and a perfect pitch for this series.
Orlando writes Wanda’s voice perfectly. The character feels aware of herself and her capabilities, which is a cathartic feeling considering the lack of control and agency she’s dealt with in the past. She’s sure of herself, not in an overconfident way, but she knows that she’s exceptionally powerful. Pietro makes an appearance, and Darcy Lewis makes her comic book debut as the manager of Wanda’s emporium. Orlando does a great job of incorporating Wanda’s history into the story. It’s clear that her past is behind her, but that doesn’t mean it’s irrelevant. Her past is the fuel she uses to help others, and it’s amazing to watch.
Pichelli’s art is gorgeous. Wanda looks as good as ever, and her powers are visually stunning. Pichelli renders Wanda’s new costume design by Russell Dauterman to perfection. Her hair flowing into magic is a particular highlight. The artist uses creative layouts to control the pace of the issue and keep readers on their toes. The level of detail throughout is impressive. The action is inventive and satisfying, while the scenes of pure exposition are just as visually compelling. D’amico’s inks add a perfect weight to the art while providing a deep black to contrast the rest of the issue’s colors.
Wilson’s coloring is spectacular from cover to cover. The red of Wanda’s costume is a brilliant shade, and the ombré effect of her hair that trails into magic is executed beautifully. Her powers offer the opportunity for tons of dramatic lighting and a range of red hues, all of which are presented in fantastic fashion here. Perhaps the most exciting part of Wilson’s coloring is the shade of Wanda herself. Wanda and Pietro are both Romani and should be presented with a darker skin tone than they have been in many of their appearances over the years. The twins are both colored appropriately here, and it’s wonderful to see. Petit’s lettering adds personality to the book. Each speech bubble is incorporated into the art beautifully.
This issue features a fun, magical adventure for the Scarlet Witch to solve. The Last Door, a seeking spell and portal Wanda has created in her emporium, establishes the possibility for endless adventures to come. First issues have a lot of work to do in setting the tone and direction of a book. Luckily, this issue does both with style and purpose. Fans of Scarlet Witch will find a lot to love here, and the ending promises exciting things to come. With Scarlet Witch #1, Orlando and the rest of the creative team deliver an excellent first issue that showcases a hero who has made amends with her past and embraces her potential to help the future.