Review by Ian Keogh
Rowan Black combines what to most might be seen as incompatible by maintaining a career with the police while also being a witch. In their opening chapter Greg Rucka and Nicola Scott show how that’s actually a good thing, and how a little mystical knowhow aids no end with detective work.
While Black Magick has been sexually charged from the start, a decision has been made to increase the sexual content. A positively dripping erotic opening chapter looks gorgeous, but then so does anything drawn by Scott. She even has a way of making the crimes and corpses look attractive, and that’s actually disturbing. However, looking at one gorgeous page after another disguises that so little actually happens in Black Magick. There are hints of the wider magical world, a demon is seen off, the police are keen to investigate an earlier case of Rowan’s, and her private life continues to be a mess. A conversation that should have taken place last time is postponed yet again, as Rucka is transparent in artificially prolonging tension. With this series his usually extremely sound dramatic sense is really letting him down, and it’s all the worse because a new volume appears so infrequently, this published almost four years after Vol. 002.
There’s finally some push forward on the plot front, but only on the last chapter, and even then it’s more temptation and tease before the cut to the cliffhanger. Black Magick continues to look amazing, and perhaps when it’s complete and combined into a single edition it will make for a more satisfying experience, but from a great starting point the series is coasting. God knows how frustrated readers following it in the original comics must be.