is an Italian fantasy comic series created by Alessandro Barbucci, Barbara Canepa, and Elisabetta Gnone and published by Disney Italia. First published in April 2001, the series ended with October 2012's issue. The comic series spanned a total of 139 issues, broken up into eleven sagas. However, the English translations of the comic ended after issue seventy-four.
The plot follows the story of five teenage girls who are chosen to be the new Guardians of Kandrakar. They serve as protectors of the center of the universe from people and creatures who wish to cause harm to it. For this purpose, powers over the five elements have been given to them. The new guardians are Will, Irma, Taranee, Cornelia and Hay Lin, whose initials form the title acronym W.I.T.C.H.
An animated adaptation of the comic was later aired on Jetix
. See W.I.T.C.H.
- Abhorrent Admirer/Stalker with a Crush: Martin, for Irma. Though eventually, he learns to leave her alone, and they become fairly good friends.
- Accomplice by Inaction: Ari of Arkhanta, who possesses a slave he uses only for his greedy motives, has a massive grudge against the oracle of Kandrakhar, the benevolent figure who saves everyone's life once a week. Why ? Unlike the man, who obsessed about changing his son, the Oracle didn't ever try to "cure" the child's illness.
- Action Girl: Every single guardian, which makes them an Amazon Brigade
- Aerith and Bob: The inhabitants of Meridian include Galgheita, Phobos, Vathek, Miriadel, Alborn... and Cedric. Also overlaps with Tom the Dark Lord.
- All Your Colors Combined: The usual method of disposing of a Big Bad. Most blatant use so far was against Dark Mother.
- All Your Powers Combined: Cornelia accidentally ends up with all five elemental powers early in the second saga, and attempts to use the power boost to restore Caleb to his human form. It doesn't end well.
- It's also implied to be an ability of the Heart of Kandrakar, but it's never used.
- Finally used in the penultimate issue of the New Power arc. Also, the Guardians acquire the power to do it at will (instead that as a desperation attack like in the New Power arc) in the final issue.
- Aloof Older Brother: Nigel Ashcroft, Taranee's love interest, has one in Danny, who's resentful of the Cook household due to having been put on trial for vandalism by Taranee's mother.
- Peter Cook, Taranee's older brother, is an aversion of this trope and out of all of the siblings of WITCH he's the closest to his sibling.
- Alternate Continuity: The comic and the animation
- Animesque: Given by the frequent use of emoticon faces, large eyes, and even Sweat Drops.
- Annoying Younger Sibling: Lillian to Cornelia and Christopher to Irma. Peter adores Taranee, though.
- Anti-Villain: Ari in the third saga and Cedric in the fifth saga.
- As Long as It Sounds Foreign: No, Taranee isn't an African name. Hay isn't a Chinese name, either. (though it's possible that the writers got it mixed up with the name "Hui" - not to be confused with the term for Chinese Muslims - which means "intelligent", "bright".)
- Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Yan Lin early in the first saga.
- Big Bad: Once a story arc. Some of them even come back!
- Bigger Is Better: Subverted. Irma tries on two occasions to use breast expansion to her advantage, but in both occasions ends up being embarrassed. Played straight with Will, who prefers her Guardian form because of the larger chest.
- Bittersweet Ending: Happens frequently.
- At the end of the first saga, Elyon defeats Phobos, thus freeing Meridian and becoming Queen, but Caleb is transformed into a flower.
- At the end of the second saga, the Guardians beat Nerissa and save Kandrakar, but Cornelia is heartbroken when she and Caleb break up.
- Blonde, Brunette, Redhead: Cornelia, Irma and Will.
- Book Ends: The first page of the first issue is also the final page of the final issue.
- Bully Hunter: Initially only Cornelia and Will, but by the end of the first story arc all the Guardians help in keeping in line their school's bullies.
- By the Power of Grayskull!: Implied to not be necessary, but used anyways, sometimes Will calls every element, sometimes everyone calls her own. In a variation, while "Earth", "Fire", "Air" and "Water" have been always called, in the first issues, Will said whatever was on her mind (Energy, Heart, etc.) one time, she ended up saying just her own name◊
- Came Back Wrong: Briefly happens to Caleb when Luba takes away Cornelia's powers before she can fully restore him to his human form. He gets better.
- Child Mage: Will discovers that her baby brother William has magical powers. Also, many of the magical people the girls have found in the "Teach 2b Witch" storyline are children.
- Cloning Blues: Early on the girls learn how to make Astral Drops, clones of themselves with their exact personalities and memories, to take their places while going on missions. That is, all of them except of Will who's distracted by Taranee's earlier capture. She ends up with a clone who's basically a blank state. At the beginning this only leads to some Hilarity Ensues... then the clones starts developing their own personalities.
- When they start using the astral drops for non-guardian things all the astral drops band together and try to live without the originals to varying degrees of success. In the end the oracle grants them their own lives and they get to live independently. This also means WITCH can't use astral drops any more.
- Cloud Cuckoolander: Hay Lin: very quirky and artistic, cheerful and absent-minded, constantly writing on her palms and using her own expressions like "spacious" (which in her language means "cool") and "weirdific".
- Color-Coded for Your Convenience: comes with the Elemental Powers: Green Earth, Blue (Turquoise) Water, Red/Orange Fire, Silver (Sometimes baby blue) Air and Pink... energy? Willpower? Whatever Will's power is.
- Comic-Book Time: Over ten years since the series started, and the girls don't appear to have aged at all and are still in the same school. Occasionally there is evidence to suggest events taking place during a certain season, such as summer holidays, but it's debatable how much time as actually passed most of the time.
- Control Freak: Phobos, big time. He decides that he'd rather fall forever without ever dying than be imprisoned by someone else. He also goes into If I Can't Have You mode whenever he's about to be defeated, choosing to destroy whatever he wanted rather than let someone else have it.
- Costumes Change Your Size: When the girls transform into their guardian forms, in addition to changing outfits and gaining wings, they get taller and gain boobs.
- Dark Magical Girl: Elyon
- A Day in the Limelight: One special followed Elyon in her duties as a queen.
- And there was a 3 part special detailing Caleb saving Elyon from a curse, and both of them eventually realising that they've fallen in love with each other.
- Depending on the Writer:
- Whether Yan Lin is Hay Lin's paternal or maternal grandmother. At the very beginning of the story (before going to Kandrakar permanently), Yan Lin addresses Chen as her son. But later in the comic, Joan mentions Yan Lin telling her bedtime stories when she was a child. Later again, Joan's parents are shown, and her mother is definitely not Yan Lin.
- Lionel Cook's job. Depending on the issue, he's either a lawyer, a psychologist or a fireman.
- Christhoper(Irma's little brother) age fluctuates wildly. Sometimes, he's a small child of similar age to Lillian(younger or older than her) and sometimes he's basically a pre-teen.
- Deus ex Machina: This is sadly the standard way the Guardians win in each arc- they never actually win by their own merits. Meridian Arc? Elyon beats Phobos while the girls are tossed aside. Nerissa Arc? Shagon is directly responsible for Nerissa's defeat, damaging her almost fatally. Ari's arc doesn't suffer from this... but the human world situation, which was really bad, is solved by the Oracle(who is just an observer). Endarno Saga? Himerish beats down Phobos off-screen. Then, Phobos' backup plan is foiled by... Napoleon(who in the comic is a mere housecat). The most ridiculous Deus ex Machina sequences were the superpower manifestation in the Dark Mother Saga- after the girls get beaten down they somehow let loose a new power they didn't know anything about and it overpowers Dark Mother with ease, and the defeat of the white queen, where the girls literally pull a completely unknown tactic out of their hats- and we never see it in use again. If there was one thing the cartoon improved, this was it.
- Disney Death: Near the end of the first saga, Caleb is reverted to a flower by Phobos as punishment for his betrayal. Cornelia is later able to restore Caleb to human form in the second saga.
- Dragons Up the Yin Yang: The Lins. Magical? Check. (well, Yan Lin and Hay Lin, anyway.) Chinese? Check. Recurring dragon motif? Check.
- Early Installment Weirdness: The comic's first few years really turned poor Will into a major Butt Monkey, to the point where the comic's third year is kicked off with her gambling-addicted Jerk Ass father trying to ruin her family's livelihood, followed by her dormouse getting ran over.
- Education Mama: Taranee's mother, a judge, is this in the comics.
- Elemental Powers
- Embarrassing Nickname: please stop calling Cornelia "Corny"
- Empathic Shapeshifter: During the Teach 2b WITCH saga, Cornelia meets Leah, a girl whose appearance changes depending on what people around her need. Because she had changed so many times, she had forgotten what she originally looked like. The girls eventually brought her to Yan Lin, who helped Leah change back to her real appearance.
- Even Evil Has Standards: Yua in the third saga. She's a banshee, whose race is basically said to be Always Chaotic Evil, has been a slave to Ari for several years now, and her revenge plan is basically to make him suffer by kidnapping his only son. When said child is seriously hurt due to the actions of both, she looks sincerely sorry, and stops her attacks on him, and quietly disappears into her swamp after Maki is cured.
- Everything's Better with Princesses: Elyon, immediately lampshaded ("I didn't know any princess"). At the end of the first saga she becomes queen.
- Expanded Universe: There have been some books based on the comics. The Adventure books and the Crystal Birds series. It's one book per girl. These books (at least the adventure series which this troper owns) have images from the magazines inserted.
- The Fashionista: Hay Lin, in a quite artistic way - she actually makes and designs many of her own clothes. To a lesser degree, Cornelia.
- Expy: Luba with her red robe, animalistic ears and long, white hair may remind some anime fans of Inuyasha.
- Fallen Hero: Nerissa used to be a Guardian.
- Facial Markings: The oracle (in the short lived manga) and Caleb in the comic both have these.
- Fate Worse Than Death: Combined with Deader Than Dead through a strange series of events. Phobos split himself in two. His physical half chooses to fall into Eternity rather than be imprisoned, then the other half of his soul is destroyed,
- Fiery Redhead: Will.
- Fish out of Water: Subverted with Orube. She's sophisticated enough to realize that tv sets are machines, not magic, but she still needed to be explained that romantic melodrama movies aren't Real Life.
- Foreign Exchange Student: The Ragorlang saga gives us Erin, who turns out to nt even be from Earth, but from a Fantasy Counterpart Culture of India - oh, and she was recruited by the Ibsens to create strife among the Guardians. In the end, she makes a Heel-Face Turn, reunites with her missing brother, and returns to her world.
- Forged Message: When Matt gets sucked into a magic book, the girls are left to try and cover up his disappearance, which includes writing an e-mail to a friend using his e-mail account, which they gained access to by guessing that his password was Will's name. Peter, the one they send it to, realizes something is off, since usually Matt's e-mails are full of typos, and this one, written by Cornelia, was not.
- For Want of a Nail: At the end of the second saga Cornelia and Caleb end their relationship because neither are willing to leave their world. A special explored what would've happened if either of them had followed the other (hint, it's not happy).
- Friend to All Living Things: Cornelia with plants and Will with animals... and appliances.
- Fun with Acronyms: W.I.T.C.H
- Gender Bender: In the anvilicious football special, Irma and Vicky decide to dress up as boys so that they can join the football try outs.
- Genre Blindness: the Oracle told them many times that their greatest strength is their unity. Anyway, the girls will often use the Let's Split Up, Gang move at the worst moment. Will also told Hay Lin that monsters don't exist at the beginning of the Ragorland saga, ie after 60 issues in a All Myths Are True series.
- Good Witch Versus Bad Witch
- Grand Theft Me: In the fourth saga, Phobos switches bodies with Endarno in order to take over Kandrakar.
- Green Aesop: One of the more recent issues, Green Truth.
- Guardian of the Multiverse: Everyone from Kandrakar, but the Guardians seem to be the ones with the active role.
- Heart Is an Awesome Power
- Heroic Albino: Kandor
- Heroic Sacrifice: There has been several of these.
- Inexplicably Identical Individuals: Irma and her stepmother.
- Killed Off for Real: let's be clear, the WITCH are nice girls, but if you are the Big Bad and they have to unleash All Your Colors Combined, they don't care whether you will be depowered or killed. The Oracle never forbid them to kill. Expect a lot of Redemption Equals Death, too.
- Kneel Before Frodo: it is almost a running gag: at the end of most sagas, the Oracle orders the assembly to kneel before the guardians. Which they shouldn't, given that it is the guardians duty to protect Kandrakar, but every time the Oracle underlines that they did way beyond their duty, and were smarter than the "wises".
- Legacy Character: The Guardian Powers, and even the Oracle title
- Lethal Chef: Will is on the same level of Akane Tendo, having once put powdered soap in place of the flour. Orube can't cook due lack of familiarity with Earth ingredients and cooking implements (the first time she cooked she set the kitchen on fire, but only that once) and clumsiness outside the way of the warrior, but while she's slowly getting better she still has a long way to go (she once set on fire the water for the pasta!).
- Light Is Not Good: the girls sided with the White Queen, won... And wondered whether they chose the good side.
- Like an Old Married Couple: George and Mildred, Will's computer and printer machine respectively. They bicker a lot but Will can tell they're together.
Taranee: What are they doing?
Will: Fighting, as always. I think they are a couple.
- Magical Girl Warrior
- Magic Map: Hay Lin's grandmother gives her a map that shows the locations of the twelve portals that need to be closed as glowing areas.
- Mind Rape: Near the end of the fourth saga, Phobos attempted to get Will to give up the Heart of Kandrakar by repeatedly showing her a vision of what he claimed her future would be like if she kept her powers, in which the other girls no longer speak to her and Matt breaks up with her. It almost works, but Will refuses to give up and makes Phobos pay. Afterwards, the Oracle reveals that the vision was actually created from Will's deepest fears, and that no one can actually tell what the future will be like.
- Noodle Incident: We know there were guardians before W.i.t.c.h., including one with Hay Lin's grandmother. But we never find out what they fought against. (The portals open every 1000 years, and Phobos and Elyon are humans, so it's very unlikely they fought against them, or that they are 1000 of years old)
- Matt being from Kandrakar
- Parodied when Will asks how important he was, and just then Kandor call him "captain".
- Oh, Crap: Happens when the villains realize they are about to lose, but the most epic one happens to Phobos when he finds himself defenseless before the Guardians and Will, still furious at him for the Mind Rape he performed on her the previous issue, calls dibs on the finishing shot.
- Older Than They Look: Himerish, Endarno, Yan Lin and everyone else in Kandrakar. Really 700 Years Old and Time Abyss can also be applied.
- Phobos also counts as it seems to be really inconsistent just how old he is (he said to be either just REALLY old or as old as time itself)
- One Steve Limit: Will's baby brother is named William. During a visit from other members of the family, Will got frustrated when they started calling William "Will" while referring to her by her real name, Wilhelmina.
- Power Gives You Wings: The only reason the girls have wings until the New Power story arc. Lampshaded in the third arc.
Orube: How do we enter the fortress? Flying?
Irma: Forget it! Only Hay Lin can fly!
Orube: Then why do you have wings?
Irma: Ah! Stupid question! It's so obvious! It's because... Because...
Orube: So you don't have an answer to everything, Irma!
Will: We'll enter while invisible. We've already done it, and it works.
Will *whispering to Hay Lin*: Anyway, remind me to ask the Oracle why we have wings.
- Politically Correct History: When all of the girls travel back in time, they find out that they have exact lookalikes in 5 countesses from London. That includes Taranee and Hay Lin.
- The Psycho Rangers: In Arc IX, the Runici, a group of five villainous boys with elemental powers show up.
- Put on a Bus: Orube returns to her homeworld after the events of the fifth saga.
- Ridiculously Cute Critter: We!
- Remember the New Guy: At least once a saga.
- Sealed Evil in a Can: Nerissa was sealed inside a coffin inside a mountain until the aurameres were merged together, breaking the spell that kept her locked away.
- Secret Keeper: Will tells Matt her secret in the fourth saga, and in the seventh saga Irma decides to tell her new boyfriend Stephen about her powers after he questions her about her strange behaviour.
- Sexier Alter Ego - The titular W.I.T.C.H. are fairly average (albeit skinny) teenagers in their normal form. When transformed however, they are changed to look much more... adult. Lampshaded on more than one occasion.
- Breast Expansion is present is the comic book, but not as prevalent as in the series.
- Shout-Out: Hay Lin has a little Sailor Moon on her monitor, along with a monster that kinda looks like Godzilla. Irma has plenty of Disney paraphernalia, including a Little Mermaid. In the Dark Mother Saga, they combine their powers to create a powerful being to defeat her
- Sixth Ranger: This happens in the third saga of the comic when Taranee temporarily leaves and Orube takes her place. When Taranee comes back, Orube becomes a true Sixth Ranger.
- Sixth Ranger Traitor: Even before the WITCH are revealed to be the chosen ones, the Oracle shows a photograph with the five of them, plus Elyon. When his assistant objects they are six, he answers the sixth will betray them. Elyon performs an Face-Heel Turn soon.
- Snark Knight: Taranee's friend (and Irma's rival - at least for a time), Sheila Jensen.
- Stereotype Flip: Taranee is the timid, overachieving Uptown Girl to Nigel's street gang member.
- Taking the Bullet: Cedric for Orube in the fifth saga, and Liam for Mariko in the eigth saga.
- The Paragon Always Rebels: Nerissa. Later Phobos will use Will's fear of becoming this against her.
- Tomboy: All the girls have different quirks and hobbies that don't classify either as complete girly girls nor Tomboys: Will prefers baggy clothes, but is very sporty, with swimming being her main hobby. Hay Lin main hobby is to sew and design clothes, but is also a complete geek, specially over anything space-related. Taranee is a dancer and Cornelia an ice dancer, but neither shy away from breaking a sweat doing manual labor. The girliest is Irma, but only in her clothes, that often have flowers and girly details.. she's also a couch potato that likes junk food and is not above of making bad jokes to irritate Cornelia.
- Transformation Sequence
- Transformation Trinket: The Heart Of Kandrakar, although when they got a power-upgrade in the seventh saga, it appears they can now transform without it.
- Also, unlike other trinkets, there's no risk of losing it, as it's normally dormant inside Will's body, and only appears when needed.
- The Heart Of Kandrakar is not needed for transformation, the Guardians have transformed before the power-upgrade without using it. Cornelia transformed at least while Will was elsewhere.
- Irma also transformed once without it to draw some boy's attention (she hid her wings). More than a Transformation Trinket, it just make them more powerful in their Guardian forms. Also, they no longer use it to transform.
- Truly Single Parent: Caleb is a Murmurer. The closest thing he has to a father is Phobos.
- Though technically, his human form was literally created by Elyon, so you could say she is his mother.
- Un-Person: Happens to Cornelia in one comic after Endarno releases some sort of magical butterfly, only the other W.I.T.C.H. girls were able to remember her. The butterfly eventually transforms into a crystal-like clone of Cornelia and shows her visions of her past, and then Cornelia destroys it.
- Weak, but Skilled: Caleb. In the comic, he possesses some very slight magic power, yet uses it well. When granted a minor part of the Guardians powers, he was the one to invent the teletransportation ability the girls still use. When using powers he was completely new to, he once easily defeated someone who had Elyon's might backing him...
- Weirdness Magnet: Heatherfield. For some reason, all of the interactions between Earth and the other realms seem to happen there.
- What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: It sounds like the magical powers of an old lady the girls meet in the "Teach 2b Witch" may fit this trope; she explains that she has the power to turn invisible, but can only do it when it's raining, and the wind has to be blowing from East, and there has to be a full moon, and she has to be wearing red.
- What the Hell, Hero?: the Oracle tells the girls off for treating their Astral Drops as if they were the Guardians' slaves.
- Where the Hell Is Springfield?: Hetherfield appears to be in the US given that the American flag appears several times and US dollars sometimes appear...but other times euros are used instead, which indicates a European location.
- Who Would Want to Watch Us?: On the Magitek world of Nune-Boreal WITCH is so popular they have merchandise, cosplayers and an actual movie; Hay Lin jokes about buying an action figure of herself because it has an MP3 player included. The costume players actually help them defeat the villains of the issue.
- Wings Do Nothing: At first, the guardians wings are pretty much useless and Hay Lin is the only one who can actually fly. At one point in the third saga, Orube asks why they even have them if they can't actually use them. However, in the seventh saga, the girls get a power upgrade which include bigger wings that allow them to fly (but Cornelia is afraid to). Justified in the New Power story arc, where it's revealed that the powers of the Guardians were incomplete, and when they get their full power at the start of the arc their wings actually start working.