The empathic mistress of magic Raven was created by writer Marv Wolfman and artist George Perez way back in 1980 for the original run of The New Teen Titans. Not only did she become a staple of the book's titular team, but, in recent years, she's also headlined two separate mini-series all her own. The daughter of a human woman and the other-dimensional demon lord Trigon, Raven must always hide her emotions, lest her father's influence exert control over her -- and doom the entire world!
To combat the dark forces that once threatened to consume her, Raven united the Teen Titans in the hope that they could stop her father's invasion of the Earth. In so doing, she found herself a new family. Since then, Raven has become a mainstay of the DC universe. Here are five essential stories featuring everyone's favorite Daughter of Darkness...
Tales of the New Teen Titans #2, "Raven" (1982)
The four-issue limited series Tales of the New Teen Titans gave detailed origin stories for each of the characters who were created by Marv Wolfman and George Perez for The New Teen Titans; including Starfire, Cyborg, Changeling, and Raven -- whose mysterious past was fully explored in issue #2.
In this one-issue tale, during a weekend camping getaway with the Titans, we get the full details of Raven's upbringing in the peaceful dimension of Azarath, in which she learned her own true demonic lineage was hidden from her. We also learn how she developed a distant relationship with her human mother Arella and a close bond with the goddess Azar. Her first contact with her demonic father Trigon is shown here as well, a meeting which would lead her to form the second version of the Teen Titans in order to defeat him.
The New Teen Titans #1-5, "The Terror of Trigon" (1984)
From the moment Raven first appeared, she was sullen and withdrawn, a lost soul who suppressed her emotions. But she did this with good reason, as unleashing them could see her follow in her demon father Trigon's footsteps.
Alas, after years of suppressing her dad's deadly DNA, Raven finally turned to the dark side, attacked her friends, and helped Trigon conquer the Earth -- where he fed on the suffering of humanity. She even sported red skin and four eyes, just like her Daddy.
The classic storyline "The Terror of Trigon" took place in the first five issues of The New Teen Titans volume 2. Read it here.
Teen Titans #10-12, “Raven Rising” (2004)
After many years as a wandering spirit without a physical body, Sebastian Blood, the twelve-year-old heir to the title of Brother Blood, with the help of his cult of worshippers, resurrected Raven into a new body so she could become his bride. In order to become a more age-appropriate wife for the youthful tyrant, her new body was that of a young teenager instead of a woman in her twenties, as she was in her previous form.
This "new" Raven would develop a different personality and a goth wardrobe, but she would still join the latest incarnation of the Teen Titans, as the Tim Drake Robin and the Cassie Sandsmark Wonder Girl were now her contemporaries. Read this story here.
Raven #1-12 (2016)
In her first solo limited series, the now teenage Raven faces her biggest challenge yet: making it through high school in one piece! While taking a leave of absence from the Teen Titans, she moves in with her aunt in San Francisco. But as Raven learns more about her human family, her demonic relations rear their ugly heads again. When one of her high school classmates vanishes, the mystery leads to something greater and more menacing than even the Daughter of Darkness can handle. Writer Marv Wolfman returns to the character he co-created in this creepy, memorable storyline. Read its first half here.
The Brave and the Bold #17-18, "Fathers" (2008)
On the surface, no two DC Super Heroes could seem more different than the bright and sunny Supergirl and the dark and moody Raven. But when the two team up, we find out they have more in common than one would think. After all, this version of Kara Zor-El has a pretty strained relationship with her own father, something Raven can relate to.
In this two-part story, the two teenage heroines team up to save San Francisco from an enemy with deep roots in the DC universe. Classic Titans writer Marv Wolfman again returns to the character he co-created, who partners with the character he famously killed off way back in Crisis on Infinite Earths #7.
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