Mystic (comics)

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For the 1950s Atlas comic book, see Mystic Comics.
Mystic
Mystic #43 (Jan. 2004). Cover art by Aaron Lopresti and Matt Ryan.
Publication information
Publisher CrossGen
Schedule monthly
Format ongoing series
Genre science fiction/fantasy
Publication date July 2000 - January 2004
Number of issues 43
Main character(s) Genevieve Villard
Giselle Villard
Creative team
Writer(s) Ron Marz, Tony Bedard
Penciller(s) Brandon Peterson, Fabrizio Fiorentino, Aaron Lopresti, Steve McNiven, Paul Pelletier, Al Rio, Paul Ryan, Kevin Sharpe
Inker(s) Jason Baumgartner, Mark Farmer, Marco Galli, Drew Geraci, Drew Hennessy, Rob Hunter, Mark Lipka, Victor Llamas, Pablo Marcos, Roland Paris, Matt Ryan, Rob Stull, Joe Weems
Creator(s) Ron Marz, Brandon Peterson, and John Dell

Mystic is a comic book that was published by the Florida-based CrossGen Comics. Created by writer Ron Marz and artists Brandon Peterson and John Dell, it was one of five flagship titles in the company's Sigilverse shared universe. Mystic ran for 43 issues (July 2000 - January 2004).

Plot summary[edit]

Set on the planet Ciress, in which sorcery is an apprenticed profession organized in guilds, the story centered on sisters Genevieve and Giselle. The former had devoted her life to becoming a top sorceress; the latter is a spoiled socialite who much against her wishes is granted great power and responsibility via a mysterious sigil.

The magic guilds at the start of the series are:

  • Dark Magi Guild
  • Astral Guild
  • Shaman Guild
  • Enchantress Guild
  • Tantric Guild
  • Djinn Guild
  • Nouveau Guild

The first six issues of Mystic describe Giselle's gaining of the Sigil and the efforts of the guild leaders to regain her power. Giselle gains her Sigil in the first issue and without intending to, steals the spirits of the ancient (and long dead) guild leaders. She also gets a guide in the form of a talking cat-like creature with yellow eyes and a love interest named Thierry Chevailier (an artist but without any magical ability). Starting in issue 4, Giselle gains the attention of one of The First who goes by the name Darrow. At first Darrow seems to help Giselle but later we learn he is under orders from Ingra to sway Giselle to the side of House Sinister.

The efforts of the other guild leaders to strip Giselle of the spirits of the long dead guild leaders fail (issue 6) but the leaders of all but two of the magic guilds regard the situation as unacceptable. To destroy Giselle the guild leaders (with the exception of Astral and Nouveau) break the prison which confined Animora. This sets in motion a conflict which lasts for the next 12 issues between Giselle (and her sister Genevieve, the leader of the Nouveau guild) against Animora and the other guild leaders. Darrow rapidly switches sides and supports Animora also. With the reluctant aid of the spirits of the former guild leaders, Giselle is able to defeat all her enemies (issue 14 and again in issue 20) but at a cost.

After her second defeat, Animora was able to establish a psychic link to Giselle and over time this turned into a form of possession. As this control was growing, Giselle alienated her good friend Thierry Chevailier and he fell in love with the older sister Genevieve (issue 24). Eventually Giselle meets Ingra and after a battle - in which Ingra easily defeats Giselle - Ingra breaks Animora's hold over Giselle and imprisons Animora (issue 23). Part of the reason why Ingra is able to defeat Giselle is that due to Giselle's recent behavior, the spirits of the guild leaders refuse to help her. Giselle, without their aid, finds that her knowledge of magic is very poor. She resolves to become a master of magic and starts with learning the magic of the Nouveau guild from her sister Genevieve, before moving on to the Shaman guild, the Djinn guild and the Astral guild (issues 25 - 28).

Note: In CrossGen Chronicles #5 it was revealed that an eighth guild named Taroc had existed but vanished long ago. The Taroc guild leader sacrificed herself to imprison Animora, one of The First, who had been banished by Ingra, the leader of House Sinister.

It was later revealed that a secret guild exists,(issue 33) called the Geometer guild; the members of which are allied with the Dark Magi guild and the Tantric guild. The Geometers believe themselves to be manipulators of all the other guilds; the guildmaster is named Archemus.

Characters[edit]

  • Genevieve Villard is the is the older sister of Giselle, the Sigil-Bearer on her world of Ciress. Genevieve studied hard and moved up rapidly in the ranks of the Nouveau Mages' Guild. When the old guild leader died, Genevieve was chosen to be the new guild master. The Mystic series begins on the day of Genevieve's ascension to the rank of Guild master. On that day, Genevieve's younger sister Giselle is given a sigil on her hand and she then absorbs all the spirits of the long-dead guild masters of the seven magic guilds, including the spirit Genevieve was supposed to obtain.
  • Giselle Villard is one of the many Sigil-Bearers. She was the younger sister who spent her time going to parties and socializing while her older sister Genevieve studied hard and moved up rapidly in the ranks of the Nouveau Mages Guild. The series begins on the day of Genevieve's ascension to the rank of Guild master for the Nouveau guild where she is to receive the spirit of the Nouveau guild. On that day, Giselle is given the Sigil on her hand and consequently absorbs the spirit of the Nouveau guild as well as the six other spirits of the guilds.


Collections[edit]

CrossGen released four trade paperbacks containing the first half of the series:

  • Mystic 1: Rite of Passage
  • Mystic 2: The Demon Queen
  • Mystic 3: Siege of Scales
  • Mystic 4: Out All Night

In addition, the company announced two additional which went unreleased due to CrossGen's bankruptcy.

  • Mystic 5: Master Class
  • Mystic 6: The Mathemagician

Marvel limited series[edit]

Mystic
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Publication information
Publisher Marvel Comics
Schedule monthly
Format limited series
Genre science fiction/fantasy
Publication date October 2011 - January 2012
Number of issues 4
Main character(s) Genevieve Villard
Giselle Villard
Creative team
Writer(s) G. Willow Wilson
Artist(s) David Lopez
Creator(s) G. Willow Wilson and David Lopez

Marvel Comics relaunched Mystic in a four-issue limited series in 2011 written by G. Willow Wilson with art by David Lopez.[1] It was very different from the original series; Giselle and Genevieve are now poor orphan sisters in the steampunk world of Hyperion who secretly teach themselves the Noble Arts, a magical technology that only the nobility of Hyperion are allowed to study. Wilson described the series as "high-fantasy Mean Girls meets Les Miserables."

The limited series was collected in 2011 in a trade paperback titled The Tenth Apprentice.

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Campbell, Josie "'Mystic'" Returns at Marvel Comics," Comic Book Resources (May 13, 2011).

Sources consulted[edit]