Title: The Dawn of the Witch Vol. 2
Author: Kakeru Kobashiri, Tatsuwo
Release Date: April 27, 2021
Publisher: Kodansha Comics
Sayb and the group survived the tough battle against the Tyrant. On The Dawn of the Witch Vol. 2, the group finally reaches the village that should end the journey. But it’s not going to be so easy.
Instead of finding even more misfortunes to hit them during the trip, the volume quickly encapsulates the things they learned and did together in the first few pages. There’s even more time to seeing the characters naked in a public bath during the first chapter than to the rest of the journey itself.
However, they find the village in a major predicament that seems to turn their assignment upside down. Another witch has taken the place of the one that would work with them in the Special Course. The villagers are also nervous and hiding from the strangers that showed up.
Besides the obvious oppressive state of the place, there’s something much fishier going on. Distrust and potential betrayal feel the air, with hints that are likely to bear fruit later. With the volume ending on a cliffhanger, it’s still up in the air if what the local people say can be trusted.
This is a volume that sets things up for the next one. If Vol. 1 had big worldbuilding to cover, The Dawn of the Witch Vol. 2 feels smaller by comparison. It’s more about their immediate situation, and it’s hard to gauge what could be important to keep in mind for later on.
On the character front, the volume details Kudo’s motivations to become a mage. It also shows a little more of each character’s personality, especially when facing such a dire situation. The most intriguing of them is Professor Los, who talks about her messed-up moral compass.
As demonstrated in the first volume, Sayb cares little about himself and would be fine with dying as long as he could protect the others. This kind of attitude would be hard to pass in the group, especially with Hort liking him so much. These discrepancies between the whole team end up making the situation worse.
It’s also interesting to see how the fanservice evolved from the previous volume. There aren’t any meaningless and forced shots this time. Most of those scenes are on the public bath chapter, which feels a lot more natural. Though it surprisingly has most of its panels showing the two boys instead.
It’s also important to mention that the ending hints that the next volume will be one to look out for, as the witch reveals herself. I didn’t expect this plot point to be brought to the forefront as soon as the first volume disregarded it.
The Dawn of the Witch Vol. 2 takes the manga in an interesting direction, but this choice hasn’t paid off yet. It continues to be an enjoyable RPG-esque tale, but most of its story feels smaller scale and not as impressive as the prior worldbuilding. It remains to be seen how the series will use this buildup in the next volume.
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