REVIEW: An Unkindness of Ravens #5 – Compelling from Start to Finish

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An Ending to An Unkindness of Ravens

An Unkindness of Ravens is a supernatural mystery comic book, fans of supernatural teen stories will likely enjoy this story. It is written by Dan Panosian (Slots) with art by Marianna Ignazzi, colors by Fabiana Mascolo, and lettering by Mike Fiorentino

Centuries after the Salem Witch Trials, the descendants of the witches who survived protect the ancient secrets handed down for centuries. These descendants are known as the Ravens. As Wilma, the new girl in town, begins to get to know the residents of Crab’s Eye, she also begins to discover this town is full of mysteries, and many of them seem to have some tie back to her and her family. 

An Unkindness of Ravens #5 is published by BOOM! Studios and is available on January 27, 2021.


An Unkindness of Ravens

An Unkindness of Ravens #5 – Story

This issue wraps up the first run of the series. Wilma has been trying to find answers about why she looks like the missing girl Waverly as well as how Waverly’s death connects with her mother and sister’s death from years before. Things start to become more transparent when Wilma’s mother, Melody Good, reappears alive and seemingly well. Wilma has more questions about how her family fits into the puzzle of Crab’s Eye. She is upset when her mother dismisses her concerns about being lied to her entire life, but claims to care deeply about Wilma. 

Eventually, Melody explains the Ravens and the Survivors’ origin, detailing two warring groups that have inhabited Crab’s Eye for centuries. The Ravens descended from the witches who were persecuted and lived through the Salem Witch Trials. In contrast, the Survivors appear to a group that pointed fingers to save themselves from persecution. Melody names Donald Dansforth as an example of one of the Survivors, he is the father of a popular girl at Wilma’s school, Scarlett Dansforth. Both sides of this war appear to have a connection to magic. 

Previously in the story, we watched these factions battle to get Wilma on their side. The Ravens at Wilma’s school have warned her against the charming Scarlett Dansforth. But it seems that the war between them has moved beyond a spat between community members. The Survivors have spent the last few centuries building their power and expanding their network.

Melody reveals that Wilma has inherited a place in this war by the nature of her birth, but we do not know which side she is on yet. Wilma has a choice to make, and she seems keen on not letting anyone else dictate her fate any longer. 

An Unkindness of Ravens #5 – Art

There is a sense of foreboding created by the use of color in this issue. While earlier issues relied on many orange and yellow tones, most of the backgrounds and settings in issue #5 have either blue or purple tones with a lot of shadows and silhouettes. In some panels, we see only the characters’ shapes, as if they are bathed in darkness even if they are outside in the light. 

I think part of this might be to draw a comparison to Ravens’ black feathers, since it is mostly those characters portrayed in this way. We see this technique used in a panel with the high school Ravens early on, and then later we see it with Wilma and her mother in several panels, as the view shifts from them to actual ravens gathering on tree branches above their heads. Either way, it’s an interesting visual. 

The portrayal of movement and magic continues to be stellar in this issue. Wilma seems to be on the go for most of the comic, her hair flowing and wind whipping about her. There is also a scene where her power is growing and impacting the world around her, and we watch as that impact flows outward throughout Crab’s Eye. The lettering also plays a crucial factor in this portrayal, as we “hear” the effects of Wilma’s abilities on the world around her. 

An Unkindness of Ravens #5 Conclusion

This issue answers many of the questions the series has built up to, but it also creates more mysteries for readers to solve in future issues. Wilma has come into her power a bit more. She wants to be an active participant in her life and not a manipulated pawn. I have thoroughly enjoyed this series so far, and I can’t wait to see what happens next. The creators of this series are sharing a genuinely compelling story, from start to finish. 


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