Raven: Daughter of Darkness #2 – Marv Wolfman, Writer; Pop Mhan, Artist; Lovern Kindzierski, Colorist
Ray – 8.5/10
WARNING: SPOILERS BELOW
Ray: After a first issue that had some very interesting elements but spent too much time on guest character Baron Winters, Raven: Daughter of Darkness #2 is a pretty strong course correction that reminds us of why Raven is one of the most interesting characters in comics under the hands of her creator. Combining horror with a surprisingly strong character-driven narrative, this is as good if not better than the first miniseries. The issue opens up with Raven going up against the mysterious Azar, a strange, superpowered girl who looks like an alien and seems to have a blood grudge against Raven for some reason – and a possible link to Trigon. Azar disappears soon after, but Raven doesn’t have time to decompress when her friends deal with a family crisis. This segment is obviously more low-key than the action segments, but it’s just as if not more compelling. Really enjoy how distinct Raven’s new friends and family are, as well.
Wolfman obviously created Raven, so he has a great grasp on how her powers work. The way she uses it in the issue is rather clever, ranging from her empathic skills to her transformations when she’s in pursuit of a villain. The chase scene that makes up the second half of the issue is strong, more intense than segments like this usually are, but I do wonder why Azar’s story arc was cut so short. It felt like Wolfman was building up a connection between her and Raven, but it seems like she was only a pawn to guide Raven to a creepy lab where dark experiments have been going on. There’s a strong central concept, a great lead character and supporting cast, and Baron Winters is mainly contained to watching Raven creepily through portals. I’m not sure what the twelve-issue plan here is, but overall, this miniseries is going in a great direction and I’m hoping it leads to the character being used well throughout the DCU.
Corrina: What impressed me this issue is how well each part of Raven’s life is spotlighted. Her family has some nice moments, her friends are well-drawn and sympathetic, and then the action sequences, particularly the use of her powers, shine. Pop Mhan was obviously a great choice for an artist.
The mystery surrounding Azar is intriguing though, like Ray, I’m sad to see that character gone. But perhaps that’s not the end of it after all because we still know so little about what’s going on in that creepy lab.
Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.
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