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Comic Book / W.I.T.C.H.

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"You are the new Guardians of the Veil..."note 

W.I.T.C.H. is an Italian Magical Girl fantasy comic series published by Disney Italia, and created by writer Elisabetta Gnone and artists Alessandro Barbucci and Barbara Canepa. Beginning in April 2001, the series ran for over ten years, ending in October 2012 after a total of 139 main issues and 16 specials.

Years ago, an evil prince named Phobos disposed of his parents and took control of Meridian, the capital city of a distant planet known as Metamoor. To prevent his tyranny from spreading any further, the Oracle, the head of a council tasked with watching over the events of the universe, separates Meridian from the rest of the universe with a powerful veil. A veil that unfortunately has begun to weaken, causing portals between it and the planet Earth to start opening, allowing both refugees from Phobos's rule and monsters under his command to start crossing over. Meanwhile, a young teenage girl named Will who recently moved to the town of Heatherfield finds herself having odd visions and befriending four other girls who each secretly have strange supernatural powers; Irma, Taranee, Cornelia and Hay Lin. Together, the quintet discovers that they've been chosen as the new Guardians of Kandrakar: powerful beings with control over the five elements (Will gaining a mysterious power called Quintessence) who must protect the very center of the universe from people and creatures who wish to cause harm to it. Their first mission? Close the portals that have been opening and put an end to Phobos's rule. And that's only the beginning...

In the United States, the comic was initially released as graphic novels underneath Disney's "Hyperion Books" publishing label, with that run covering only the first sixteen issues, ending in the middle of the second story arc. The United Kingdom fared a bit better, seeing the release of everything up to issue seventy-four, but still left hanging in the middle of the seventh story arc. In October 2017, Yen Press began a new English translation, with all but the final story arc being released as of August 2023. There also exists chapter book novelizations of the first two story arcs, as well as a short-lived Japanese manga version that was serialized in Kadokawa's "Monthly Asuka" magazine (consisting of the original scripts with new artwork by Haruko Iida) that covered the first story arc and was later collected in two tankōbon.

An animated adaptation of the comic from French studio SIP Animation and Disney premiered in 2004, airing on Jetix worldwide, and also ABC Kids & Family in the US. The series lasted for 52 episodes and covered the events of the first two story arcs, with the second season notably having Greg Weisman of Gargoyles fame as showrunner; all tropes concerning that adaptation go there.

Multiple novels taking place within the W.I.T.C.H. universe have also been written by various Scandinavian writers, with only five of these novelsnote  gaining translation and release outside the region. Each of these novels centers on one of the protagonists:

  • When Lightning Strikes (centered on Will)
  • Enchanted Music (also known as The Music of the Silencer; centered on Irma)
  • Heartbreak Island (also known as The Fire of the Ocean; centered on Taranee)
  • Stolen Spring (also known as Green Magic; centered on Cornelia)
  • The Cruel Empress (centered on Hay Lin)

In 2003, Lene Kaaberbøl also released four W.I.T.C.H. novels in the Crystal Birds series (also known as The Broken Orb series):

  • The Stone Falcon
  • The Talons of the Eagle
  • The Shadow of the Owl
  • The Golden Phoenix

The books by other writers are:

  • Queen of the Night (Maud Mangold, Swedish, 2006)
  • The Ebony Pyramid (Ruben Eliassen, Norwegian, 2006)
  • The Flame of Clarity (Maud Mangold, Swedish, 2005)
  • The Golden Spring (Josefine Ottesen, Danish, 2005)
  • The Iceflower (Josefine Ottesen, Danish, 2004)
  • The Pristine Rose (Lene Møller Jørgensen, Danish, 2006)
  • The Storms of Windmor (Cecilie Eken, Danish, 2005)
  • The Touch of a Star (Lene Møller Jørgensen, Danish, 2007)
  • The Wells of Fog (Cecilie Eken, Danish, 2004)

In July of 2023, Disney Italy announced a new even-more Animesque reboot in the form of a manga-like graphic novel, which saw release in Italy in October. Pages with English text have surfaced online, but so far there is no word on an official English-language release yet.

WITCH provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Abhorrent Admirer: Martin, the text-book example of a nerd, has a massive, one-sided crush on Irma and just doesn't get "no" as an answer. He ends up being a Cosmic Plaything as a result, since he (unbeknownst to him) gets caught in the crossfire of various supernatural events. Though eventually, he learns to leave her alone, and they become fairly good friends.
  • Aborted Arc: Whatever happened to Irma's and Joel's relationship? We see them very much in love, then the girls have to attend to some usual otherwordly business, then to another, than to another...and the next time we see Irma swooning over a guy it's some bloke called Stephen. None of the other W.I.T.C.H members ever point this out or do as much as recall Joel's existence.
  • Accomplice by Inaction: Ari of Arkhanta, who possesses a slave he uses only for his greedy motives, holds a massive grudge against the oracle of Kandrakar, 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.
  • A-Cup Angst: Will is less than well-endowed, and rather sore about it, too.
  • Aerith and Bob: The inhabitants of Meridian include Galgheita, Phobos, Vathek, Miriadel, Alborn... and Cedric. Also overlaps with Tom the Dark Lord.
  • Affectionate Nickname:
    • Mariko the Black Queen calls her sister Shinobu "Bu-chan".
    • Some of the girls call Cornelia 'Corny'.
    • Hay Lin is sometimes called "Hay-hey."
  • Age-Gap Romance: A sobering one; Cornelia falls for the rebel leader Caleb in her Guardian guise, which makes her look like an eighteen-year-old. They develop sparks, which quickly are put on hold after Phobos reveals that Caleb was one of his plant advisors and reverts him to a plant. Despite her heartbreak, Cornelia resolves to save Caleb when receiving a power boost. That should solve all the problems, after their mutual hardship? No; Caleb finds out that Cornelia is a minor, and Squicks at the thought of dating a kid. He breaks up with her and while he has sparks for Elyon, it's established as being a really bad thing especially when Cornelia finds out. To make matters worse, the Oracle points out that their relationship would have foundered regardless because they live in two different worlds; Cornelia would never forget her home, and Caleb would get arrested due to lacking papers and being a figure of interest in the Elyon case.
  • 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 implied to be an ability of the Heart of Kandrakar, but it's never used until the penultimate issue of the New Power arc.
    • 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 — out of all of the siblings he's the closest to his sister.
  • Alternate Continuity: The comic and the animation.
  • Amulet of Dependency: The Heart of Kandrakar pretty much becomes part of Will's body. It's not, strictly speaking, pre-requested for the Guardians to transform or use magic. But the few times it was taken away, damaged or simply disturbed, their powers greatly diminished and Will got sick just from being parted from it, with the implication she would eventually die because of it.
  • And I'm the Queen of Sheba: Elyon introduces herself as Princess Elyon and a local says he's a little butterfly.
  • Animate Inanimate Object: The power of Quintessence can turn ordinary electrical appliances into these.
  • Animesque: Given by the frequent use of emoticon faces, large eyes, and even Sweat Drops. The original creators were openly aiming for manga style, but had to tone it down, as Disney back in the late 90s was virulently against such art direction.
  • Annoying Younger Sibling: Lillian to Cornelia and Christopher to Irma. Played for laughs by Peter toward Taranee, as he absolutely adores his younger sister, yet often jokes that she's this trope.
  • Anti-Villain: Ari in the third saga and Cedric in the fifth saga.
  • Art Evolution: A subdued example and most prominent in the final 20 or so issues, but over the years the drawning style and colouring still changed, with various characters gaining altered models over time, too. Ironically, covers remained more consistent, but were drawn in a different style than the comics itself, and when they eventually shifted, they gained a dramatically different style.
  • Ascend to a Higher Plane of Existence: Yan Lin early in the first 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". Or heilin which means "black collar".
  • Big Bad: One per 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 embarrassing herself. 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.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: Will's father. He manages to be almost as despicable as some of the magical villains, despite being a mere human.
  • 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.
  • Bowdlerise: In the original Hyperion translation, some censorship applied; due to certain scenes such as the transformations involving the girls getting naked (albiet with Barbie Doll Anatomy), some panels were slightly cut, redrawn, and sometimes even outright removed. Averted in the JY translation, however, which keeps the panels as they were in the original Itialian release, and leave in the ones that were removed in the old translation.
  • Bully Hunter: Initially only Cornelia and Will, but by the end of the first story arc all the Guardians help keep the school bullies in line.
  • Buxom Beauty Standard: It's an official plot point, in both the comics and novelizations... subverted by Irma, however, whose oversized bust is the butt of jokes.
  • By the Power of Grayskull!: Implied to not be necessary, but used anyway. Sometimes Will calls upon every element, sometimes every guardian 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 just saying her own name, Of course, in English, her name takes on a whole new meaning when you think about it.
  • 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.
  • Cloud Cuckoolander: Hay Lin is 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".
  • Cloudcuckoolanguage: Hay Lin uses the words "spacious" and "cosmic" as synonyms for "cool", as mentioned above, and also sometimes invents her own words like "weirdific" and "rockalicious".
  • Color-Coded Elements: Green earth, blue/turquoise water, red/orange fire, silver/bluish air and pink energy.
  • 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 has actually passed. It's hard to say just how much time is passing - considering at least a few mundane days of Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World seem to happen. What makes it even weirder is the fact in the same time the girls have specified birth dates and celebrate said birthdays, yet are definitely not in their 20s by the end of the series.
    • The closest it ever gets to any sort of time flow is William, Will's half-brother, being sired and born, then reaching the age of 1. He's however never seen older than a toddler.
    • Justified in one arc - Nerissa attempts to attack the girls in their dreams... specifically to weaken them. By constantly giving them nightmares, they therefore are worn down.
  • 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 become older, taller and curvier.
  • "Could Have Avoided This!" Plot: Played for Drama; while Elyon becomes suspicious of Cedric, Phobos always manages to reassure her that they're siblings and he loves her. Eventually, the Guardians advise her to switch places with an Astral Drop at her coronation. It turns out to be the right call since Phobos tries to assassinate the Astral Drop, but in the melee, the false king seemingly murders Caleb. Elyon goes My God, What Have I Done? and says if she had listened to the Guardians earlier, Caleb would still be alive.
  • Dark Magical Girl: Elyon. This mostly comes from the fact she was originally set up to be the future villain of the series, and even after that got scrapped very early on, both the character design and most of her original personality still remained intact.
  • A Day in the Limelight: One special followed Elyon in her duties as a queen.
    • And there was a three 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. Hay Lin's family is pretty complex, Chen was the servant of Joan's family, and they fell in love, so if Chen's family all were servants of Joan's family could Yan Lin have told Joan bedtime stories as a nanny.
    • Lionel Cook's job. Depending on the issue, he's either a former lawyer turned psychologist... or a fireman.
    • Irma's little brother Christopher's 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.
    • Whether the guardians need Will and the heart of Kandrakar to transform or are able to do it independently changes with plot convenience.
  • Deus ex Machina: This is sadly the standard way the Guardians win in each arc – they rarely 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 house cat). 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. Then there's the defeat of the White Queen, where the girls literally pull a completely unknown tactic out of their hats that we never see 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.
    • Near the end of the Trials of the Oracle saga, Phobos pulls an apparent Disney Villain Death... And then reappears in the following issue: it was all according to plan. This time the Guardians disintegrated his soul to make sure he was dead.
  • 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 Jerkass father trying to ruin her family's livelihood, followed by her dormouse getting run over.
  • Earth/Wind Juxtaposition: Cornelia is the Guardian of Earth, and is the oldest and most mature of the girls. Hay Lin is the Guardian of Air, and is the youngest and silliest of the girls.
  • Education Mama: Taranee's mother, a judge, is always reminding her on her duties and education. She also tends to be pretty judgmental toward anything and anyone breaking the school routine of her daughter.
  • Elemental Personalities: The Cloud Cuckoolander Hay Lin controls air, the grounded, skeptical Deadpan Snarker Cornelia controls earth, and Taranee is a reversal of the usual Playing with Fire type, being very shy and gentle and thus reliable enough to be entrusted with the most easily destructive element. Irma, who controls water, is kindhearted and laid-back, but also impulsive. Will, who controls energy and electricity, is emotional and volatile, but also determined.
  • Elemental Powers: Duh. The entire franchise is build on the concept of five ordinary girls gaining magical powers, becoming Magical Girl Warriors as a result. Their elemental powers follow the classic Greek air, water, earth, and fire, with the fifth one being "quintessence".
  • Embarrassing First Name: Will would love it if nobody ever found out her given name is Wilhelmina.
  • 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.
  • Expanded Universe: There have been some books based on the comics, such as the Adventure books and the Crystal Birds series. It's one book per girl. These books 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,
  • Faux Shadowing: When Orube moves to Heatherfield, a reclusive famous pianist next door seems to get romantically interested in her. Nothing ever comes of it and the guy gets buttkicked from the story altogether soon after that.
  • Fiery Redhead: Will.
  • Fluffy Cloud Heaven: Kandrakar gives off this vibe in both the comic and show.
  • Flying Firepower: Taranee had the power of creating and controlling fire since the beginning, but became an example of Flying Firepower in the New Power saga, when all the Guardians (and not just Hay Lin) acquired the ability to fly. An early foe, Ember the Pain, was this since she was created.
  • 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 not 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 Halloween, I Am Going as Myself: In comic issue #100, the girls go to a party and find out it's a costume party. Guess what happens next.
  • 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 home appliances.
  • Fun with Acronyms: W.I.T.C.H
  • Fusion Dance: The Guardians' final power-up in the comics is the ability to become a gestalt being called Sixtar.
  • Genre Blindness: The Oracle told them many times that their greatest strength is their unity. Nevertheless, 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: Well, they aren't witches, but they are still Magical Girl Warriors utilising elemental powers to face all sorts of magic users and beings from other worlds. It was particularly prominent in 2nd saga, the Nerissa's Revenge, but not restricted to it.
  • Grand Theft Me: In the fourth saga, Phobos switches bodies with Endarno in order to take over Kandrakar.
  • Green Aesop: Few issues have this, most notably #109, 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 Sacrifice: There has been several of these:
  • Inexplicably Identical Individuals: Irma and her stepmother.
  • In Spite of a Nail: Sadly, the Oracle shows a heartbreaking dream to Cornelia, showing what would have happened if she and Caleb had tried to make their relationship work. In one of them, Cornelia moves to Meridian and gives up her powers but cannot forget Earth, refusing to take an elixir that would make her forget. The other one has Caleb moving to the human world and getting arrested when he blurts out knowing about Elyon; the girls' rescue attempt exposes their identities to the cops. No matter the timeline, they were doomed to not work.
  • In Touch with His Feminine Side: Matt, Eric, Nigel, and Stephen. It's a comic series for girls, after all.
  • 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, either. Expect a lot of Redemption Equals Death, too.
    • Phobos got his soul disintegrated, as the Guardians didn't want to take chances and were furious for what he had just done (particularly Will, who had been subjected to a Mind Rape).
    • Also happens to a few of the supporting characters. One of Taranee's first dancing teachers dies of cancer at a young age, Will's pet gets killed by a passing car, etc.
  • 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. They should not, given that it is the guardians' duty to protect Kandrakar, but the Oracle usually underlines that they went above and beyond the call of duty.
  • Legacy Character: The Guardians of Kandrakar and even the title of Oracle.
  • Lethal Chef:
    • Will is on the same level of Akane Tendo, having once put powdered soap in place of the flour. To be fair, Will has never done anything in a kitchen before, and her mother expected her to be the primary cook after William was born, with only cookbooks to help her. No matter how smart one is, that situation can be very stressful.
    • Orube can't cook due to lack of familiarity with Earth ingredients and cooking implements (the first time she cooked she set the kitchen on fire) and clumsiness outside the ways of a warrior. While she's slowly getting better, she still has a long way to go – she once set pasta water on fire!
  • 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're a couple.
  • Limited Wardrobe: Completely absent in spite of this being a Disney series: most characters have signature styles (such as Cornelia's preference for long skirts, Will's love for practical outfits, and so on), and the few exceptions are Justified and tend to be aliens. And even then, the only ones who are never seen in a different outfit are Kandrakar's Elders, who wear white robes every time they're seen as Elders – meaning that Yan Lin (who wasn't initially an elder), Himerish (who was temporarily deposed as Oracle and later gives up the title) and Luba (who loses her position as a punishment) are seen in different outfits.
  • Long-Runner Tech Marches On: When the series started, floppy discs were still a thing in use, even if already fading. In the final issues, the girls are using early smartphones. All while still attending Sheffield Academy.
  • Loving Parent, Cruel Parent: Somewhat downplayed among Will's parents. Her mother, Susan, is a kind and caring parent who is trying to rebuild her and Will's life after leaving their old home. Her father, Thomas, is a gambling-addicted man who ran his family into the ground, leading Susan to take Will and leave him behind and when he returns into their lives, it's to try and blackmail Susan into giving him more money. Is it any wonder the other Guardians turn to Kadma to get rid of him?
  • Magical Girl Warrior: Naturally.
  • 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.
  • Martial Artists Are Always Barefoot: Proud Warrior Race Girl Orube from the warrior world of Basiliade, whose appearance is purposely reminiscent of Asian martial artists, goes barefoot whenever she can.
  • The Men in Black: While dressed more like plain clothes detectives, Interpol acts this way, especially its special division for supernatural cases, becoming core antagonists for Crisis on Both Worlds Arc.
  • 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 group 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 thousands 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: Averted, with numerous characters sharing same names
    • 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.
    • Will and Irma's fathers as well as Elyon's adoptive father are all called Thomas, or Tom for short.
    • The male Interpol agent investigating Elyon's disappearance and the bassist from Cobalt Blue are both named Joel.
  • Overly Narrow Superlative: Invoked by Irma regarding Orube. Irma says that, to have been Luba's best pupil, Orube probably "was alone in her class".
  • 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 five 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.
  • Really Royalty Reveal: The raised-human Elyon is revealed at the beginning to be princess of Meridian.
  • Ridiculously Cute Critter: We and Ew.
  • Remember the New Guy?: At least once per saga. The Expanded Universe is choke-full of characters introduced for the sake of just that one story.
  • Sealed Evil in a Can:
    • Nerissa was sealed in a coffin inside a mountain until the Aurameres were merged together, breaking the spell that kept her locked away.
    • After reaching 0% Approval Rating, Nihila's temple got stormed by her subjects and she ultimately ended up trapped inside, spending centuries trying to get out.
  • 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.
  • Sentient Vehicle: Bugg, an inexplacibly-living buggy that briefly appears towards the end of the comic's run.
  • 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
    • The Ibsens in the Ragorlang saga are probably named after Henrik Ibsen. In keeping with the Norwegian theme, the Ragorlang's appearance is based on The Scream (the chapter in which it appears is called "The Screaming Man").
    • Professor Takeda in the Teach 2b Witch arc may well have been inspired by Gendo Ikari: a brilliant Japanese scientist who undertakes questionable experiments motivated by the loss of a family member, while ignoring his introverted daughter Shinobu.
    • The WITCH girls end up discovering the Magic School they're supposed to find is a van that becomes a bus. It's quite literally a magic school bus.
    • In the Ladies vs. W.I.T.C.H. arc, one of the three inimical Ladies is called Lady Giga. Her weapon of choice is her repetitive, maddening singing.
    • In a later issue, there are five countesses named Josephine, Margareth, Elizabeth, Amy and Louise
  • 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 a Face–Heel Turn soon.
  • Snark Knight: Taranee's friend (and Irma's rival - at least for a time), Sheila Jensen.
  • Speaks Fluent Animal: One-sided. Will's empathetic powers make animals respond to her mood and thoughts.
  • Status Quo Is God: The official novels suffer greatly from this, being Interquels and thus bound by the limits of the ongoing main plot of the comics. As a result, the girls are never allowed to change in some drastic way, nor the plot develop into a major or lasting change - no matter how the events of each novel play out.
  • Stereotype Flip: Taranee is the timid, overachieving Uptown Girl to Nigel's street gang member.
  • Stripperiffic: All of the outfits that the girls get when they transform count, but Hay Lin's outfit takes the cake, as it's barely covering anything.
  • Sweet Polly Oliver: In the football special, Irma and Vicky decide to dress up as boys so that they can join the football try outs.
  • Taking the Bullet: Cedric for Orube in the fifth saga, and Liam for Mariko in the eigth saga.
  • Teacher/Parent Romance: Will's mom begins dating one of her teachers. Will tries to sabotage the relationship but fails. They end up getting married.
  • 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's main hobby is to sew and design clothes, but she is also a complete geek, especially over anything space-related. Taranee is a dancer and Cornelia a figure skater, 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 making bad jokes to irritate Cornelia.
  • Transformation Sequence
  • Transformation Trinket: The Heart Of Kandrakar is a minor example. Will can use it to induce a transformation in herself or the other guardians but it is not, strictly speaking, necessary. Irma transformed once without it to draw some boy's attention (she hid her wings). It mostly just make them more powerful in their Guardian forms. 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.
  • Truly Single Parent: Caleb is a Murmurer. The closest thing he has to a father is Phobos. note 
  • Unmanly Secret: Uriah, the school bully, owns a plushie that he calls his mascot. The old janitor Mary discovers this while cleaning the lockers, and was able to use this as an incentive to keep him in line.
  • Un-person: Happens to Cornelia in one comics after Endarno possessed by Phobos 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.
  • Wake Up, Go to School, Save the World: Oh so much. The characters sometimes go directly from school to whatever issue they're facing. This can lead to a strange interpretation in that villains deliberately wait before acting against WITCH.
  • 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. At least part of it due to the Guardians living there, but not all weird things happen because of their presence.
  • What Kind of Lame Power Is Heart, Anyway?: The magical powers of an old lady the girls meet in the "Teach 2b Witch" fit this trope, being absurdly specific. 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 calls the girls off for treating their Astral Drops as if they were the Guardians' slaves.
  • Where the Hell Is Springfield?: Unintentional example: Heatherfield is supposed to be in the US, given the use of the American flag and dollars and the setting being how many Italians would see America, but the way characters act and the setting not being that American made it rather unclear, with some translations sometimes changing the currency to euros (or even skip the detail entirely) to indicate an 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 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 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.