Volume 4 for Flying Witch helps close off the winter season with the friendliness of a bunny and eagerness to be on a warm beach. The progression of Makoto’s experiences have, in my opinion now, reached the point where we get a bigger picture of all the characters and the story. Since the next volume will take some time before we see it, I wanted to focus more on the overall view of Flying Witch as a series.
To start with, I still absolutely love how heartening every volume has been. Flying Witch does a lot right in focusing on the everyday experiences characteristic of the slice of life genre. Along with that, the addition of the fantasy nature of witches makes for a creative twist that opens a lot of doors. By no means is Flying Witch limited in the amount of content available to explore, despite as a reader wanting to see more of the magic that Makoto and other witches can do. This is especially true in the chapters with the witch cookies and the bees, that generally could be found in any slice of life and not necessarily within a “witch”-themed one.
There may be another hindering factor to Flying Witch, and that would be being within a slice of life genre. What is problematic is that focusing on the mundane and arbitrary samples of Makoto’s life is not productive for character and story development. Since the premise of the series is about Makoto training and growing as a witch, it is difficult to move forward. Moreover, every character is a bit too similar: someone who is always friendly and helpful with a hint of quirkiness.
As for the story, another question that just pops out is how and why witches exist. That is mainly highlighted in the fact that there is no information on how Chinatsu, who has no astounding characteristics, can become a witch just because she decides to. Both Makoto and Akane just sort of accept it and laugh at Chinatsu’s ambition, which leads to them showing her some magic and making a robe, but not teaching her. Is it really possible for Chinatsu to become a witch?
If you’ve only seen the anime, then either this next section will be a spoiler, or you won’t see it at all. But this volume does have a chapter that may promise a bit more advancement in the story, and that is Makoto meeting with a VIP witch. In other words, witches-in-training have mentors who report their progress in becoming a witch. What is interesting is the mentors report to a “Society” of presumably head witches that provide resources for those witches.
I could sit here and talk about my hopes of seeing that blossom into an interaction for Makoto, but I’ll spare it for this review. Regardless, the introduction of magical creatures or supernatural events helps to settle the lack of magical skills in Flying Witch that is symbolic of witches. After having met with her mentor, Makoto encounters a friend and they set off to eventually meet a bunny serving as guardian of a beach. The strangeness of the dealings with the bunny are so great and silly that anyone who sees it has no choice but to smile.
Author/Illustrator: Chihiro Ishizuka
Publisher: Vertical Comics
Release Date: December 19, 2017
Disclaimer, a copy of Flying Witch Volume 4 was provided to BentoByte by the publisher for the purpose of review.