Raven has always been a character I felt had untapped potential. She’s quite mysterious and has a powerset that ties well into the supernatural side of DC Comics. Someone at DC must have recently thought the same thing, as she’s getting a 12 part mini-series starting today.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
In this all-new miniseries, Raven faces a new, otherworldly menace that is all too grounded in reality. Plus, Raven’s personal life is in an uproar as her mother and aunt struggle for the soul of a Titan! It’s up to Baron Winters of the Night Force to intercede on her behalf as she embarks on the adventure called “The Girls With the Anime Eyes”!
Why does this matter?
When your father is a demon and your ability to relate to other kids your age is hampered due to growing up in a cult, I imagine it’s pretty damn hard to be normal. Writer Marv Wolfman is probing just that angle, which not only makes her interesting but relatable to all those teens out there who have a hard time interacting with their peers.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
This issue is a solid start to the mini-series, pacing out the introduction of Raven (to those who don’t know her) and introducing the conflict that sets the plot in motion. Along the way, readers get a good sense of Raven’s unique character as she speaks to her peers at a bonfire and then later interacts with her very Christian guardians. Wolfman has set up a story that not only aims to reveal more about Raven, but also probe who she was before she became a hero.
As the story unfolds Wolfman introduces a Sherlock Holmes looking character who sits by a roaring fire with his pet tiger. He throws off a lot of wisdom in his scenes and I got a slight Dylan Dog vibe from him. He’s the all knowing supernatural expert who will undoubtedly play a part in helping (and maybe even hurting) Raven for the betterment of mankind.
Pop Mhan draws this issue with colors by Lovern Kindzierski and does best with scenes involving the shadowy supernatural beings or monsters. The cliffhanger might be one of the best full-page spreads of the week as it’s quite haunting. Raven looks great with her spiky hair throughout as, well as when she’s in her superhero costume. There are a few choice encounters involving a giant demon which also look fabulous. In one for instance, the demon is towering over Raven and how Mhan draws this character through the trees looks quite realistic.
Why can’t fire messages of the future ever be positive?
It can’t be perfect can it?
This book requires you know Raven’s backstory, at least a little bit, without feeling too in the dark. There’s some explanation as to who her father is and how she grew up but it’s told by Raven rather than shown. That leaves it a bit fuzzy in one’s mind. It opens in a way that’s slightly confusing too. My biggest question is why isn’t she with the Teen Titans? There isn’t an explanation and that seems like a big detail to explain. I’m on board for this adventure, but I was left with questions that probably won’t be answered unless I dig into the back issue bin.
Is It Good?
This is a great first issue setting up its characters and the conflict well. This is a miniseries that you’ll be on board with if you enjoy supernatural superhero tales.