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Review – The Marked #5 (Image Comics)

Overall
8.8/10
8.8/10
  • Writing - 8/10
    8/10
  • Art - 9.5/10
    9.5/10
  • Overall - 8.75/10
    8.8/10
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The Marked #5

Writers: David Hine & Brian Haberlin
Artist: Brian Haberlin
Colorist: Geirrod Van Dyke
Letterer: Francis Takanaga
Publisher: Image Comics
Maturity Rating: M
Release Date: March 4th, 2020

Liza and Mavin’s inevitable confrontation has been building for four issues, but now that moment has finally come in The Marked #5.

 

An Inevitable Confrontation in The Marked #5

The Marked #5 wraps up the first plot arc and volume of the series, and it does so with gusto. The Marked portrays the darker sides of magic, where temptation and corruption can take root. Yet there is always a shining beacon, even in a series such as this.

The magical system within this series has been fascinating from the start. It merges the concept of secret societies (for magic is safest when few know about it) and magical tattoos in order to create something beautiful. And something very dark.

The Marked #5 (Image Comics) cover A by Jay Anacleto
The Marked #5 (Image Comics) cover A by Jay Anacleto

Even though the main arc is resolved in this issue, it still feels like there are so many opportunities for future plots. That is the best part of the way they developed this fantastic world. Here’s hoping we see more—and soon.

Writing

The Marked #5 was every bit the issue I had hoped it would be. It was daring and dark, all while wrapping up core elements to this series (thus far). Liza and Mavin have been on a collision course ever since the very first issue, but seeing it actually come to fruition is endlessly satisfying.

David Hine and Brian Haberlin worked together to create this plot, and they did an excellent job here. There is a real sense of the ethereal, as well as so much nuance in the plot itself. It was fascinating seeing it all unfold, especially while surrounded by such an intriguing world.

What is truly remarkable is the way they managed to surprise us readers here. This moment felt inevitable—yes. Nevertheless, that does not mean the moment had to follow a predictable pattern, so that isn’t what the authors did. What they did ended up being so much better.

This series has been intense and dark from the start, so I’m not going to pretend that the conclusion to this plot is anything else. But it felt right, all the same. It fits in thematically with the series, while keeping the promise made to the fans.

Art

As with the rest of this series, the artwork behind The Marked #5 was stunning. The themes and imagery used are pure perfection. Especially the way they portray the tattoos and magic working together. That’s absolutely a highlight of this series and this issue in particular.

Brian Haberlin provided the artwork alongside a heavy chunk of the writing, and it shows. The artwork is the ideal framework for the plot itself, showcasing the magical system in a way that few could.

Geirrod van Dyke provided the colors for this issue, and they’re just divine. The way he colors the magic and the tattoos make them almost feel alive. It’s as if they are the most real elements portrayed in this world. An ironic note, if you think about it.

Finally, Francis Takanaga provided the lettering, and their framework was essential for this issue. The letters seemed to flow across the page, balancing perfectly against the flow of the magic.

Conclusion

The Marked #5 concludes the first volume, appropriately titled “Fresh Ink”. It was everything we could have hoped for, wrapping up the plot with intense action and emotional revelations.

Having practically devoured this series, I love the idea of seeing more plot arcs from this fascinating world. And I just can’t wait for news about what will happen next.


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About the author

Cat Wyatt

Cat Wyatt is an avid comic book reader, as well as a reader of novels. Her favorite genres are science fiction and fantasy, though she's usually willing to try other genres as well. Cat collects Funko Pop figures, Harry Potter books (different editions), and has more bookshelves than she's willing to admit.

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