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Zatanna
Zatanna-18
Zatanna
Basic Information
Real Name: Zatanna Zatara
Gender: Female
Race: Homo Magi
Relatives: Zatara (father)
Sindella (mother)
Zachary Zatara (cousin)
Affiliation: Justice League of America
Abilities: Sorcery
First Appearance: Hawkman #4
Created by: Gardener Fox
Murphy Anderson

Zatanna is a character that debuted in Hawkman #4 and is the main character to the series of the same name.

HistoryEdit

Zatanna Zatara is the daughter of famed magician Giovanni “John” Zatara and Sindella, a member of the mystical Homo Magi race. Zatanna is a direct descendant of the artist and magician Leonardo da Vinci, and is related to Nostradamus; Alessandro Cagliostro; the noted alchemists Nicholas Flamel and Evan Fulcanelli; and Lord Arion of Atlantis. Her cousin, Zachary Zatara, is also a magician. [1]

Zatanna was a successful stage illusionist before she discovered her true magical powers while investigating the disappearance of her father. With the help of Batman, The Atom, Elongated Man and others, she was successfully reunited with him. Their time together was short, and unfortunately, both of her parents were killed on separate occasions while saving her life. [2]

Zatanna assisted the Justice League of America on a number of cases before being elected to full membership. During her tenure with the group her power levels diminished briefly, so that she could only control the four elements: earth, air, fire, and water. It should be noted that this limitation was only temporary and that her magical ability was fully restored. Later Zatanna was worried about her lack of focus while using magic. She decided that her father's style of magic was wrong for her, and explored her mother's mystical heritage

While Zatanna was a member of the Justice League, the villain Doctor Light stole aboard the Watch Tower and raped the Elongated Man's wife Sue Dibny. When Zatanna and several others Leaguers returned, they saw what Dr. Light had done. A fight broke out and when they finally managed to subdue him, he began to threaten them and their families. Zatanna was prepared to erase Light's memories of the incident, but his terrible brutality and his promises to do it again sparked a debate amongst the present League members on whether or not to tamper with his personality and prevent him from repeating his crime. Zatanna, Hawkman, and The Atom voted for such action, while The Green Arrow, Black Canary, and The Green Lantern voted against. The Flash broke the tie and voted to tamper with Light's mind. Zatanna used her magic to do so, but the difficulty of the process resulted in her accidentally lowering his intellect. In the midst of her spell, Batman appeared and tried to stop them. Zatanna froze him, and they voted to have her erase his memories of the incident as well.

Zatanna's mind-wipe of Dr. Light was not an isolated occurrence. Catwoman discovered that her journey from villain to hero and her resulting efforts to lead a moral life were caused by Zatanna's mental intervention. Selina came to distrust her memories, motives, and choices she’d made since that incident. In a fit of rage, Catwoman ties Zatanna up and pushes her through a window. Despite this, Zatanna helps Catwoman and, at Selina's behest, mind-wipes petty villains Film Freak and Angle Man, because they had deduced Catwoman's secret identity.

Zatanna and Batman’s friendship degraded once Batman discovered what she had done. He began to distrust her and his other friends in the super hero community. When Zatanna helped Batman with reconnaissance at a Lazarus Pit, she asks him why he came to her. "I needed someone I can trust," Batman said, "but I had to settle for you." This must have been especially hard for her to hear, seeing that she and Bruce Wayne had been close friends since childhood.

Recently, however, their relationship appears to have warmed; sometime later he called her for information on a card-counter involved in scamming The Penguin. He makes no mention of their conflict, and casually calls her by her nickname, "Zee".

After departing from the League, Zatanna continues her stage career and her vocation as a defender against mystical threats, becoming a member of the Sentinels of Magic. She is also the author of the hugely successful Hex Appeal: The Modern Girl's Guide to Magic.

At a superhero support group run by Etta Candy, she recounted how during a failed magical ritual to search for her father's tomes, one of her past ill-casted spells summoned a shapeshifter named Gwydion, who kills her companions. The trauma of this, combined with her guilt from her mind-wipes, caused her to lose confidence in herself and she lost her powers. With the help of her new apprentice Misty Kilgore, she was able to capture Gwydion to use as her own. She eventually regained her confidence and powers, and used them to defeat Zor, a rogue Time Tailor who released the Sheeda as a plague to infect and degrade the entire universe. As a reward, the other Time Tailors allowed her one last meeting with her father, who reveals that his books were written in her, his greatest spell and gift to the world. In the final battle against the Sheeda, Zatanna cast a spell to move time and space, retroactively positioning the Seven Soldiers to overthrow the Sheeda.

Zatanna is currently a reserve member of the Justice League, aiding them from time to time when her magical expertise is needed, although she declined an offer for full membership, stating her need to take a break from heroics. She is still a regular guardian against mystical threats.

Powers and AbilitiesEdit

PowersEdit

Sorcery: Zatanna is a homo magi, a human born with the affinity to manipulate magic. Her unique genetic structure allows her to use the magic she was born with as well as learned magic. As a tribute to her father, and as a focus for her spells, she casts spells by speaking backwards. For example, saying "pots" would cause the target of the spell to stop in their tracks. She can only cast the spells she wants by speaking or reading backwards, because that's the only way to focus her magic.

  • Elemental Sorcery: With her magic Zatanna has shown a greatest affinity to manipulate the elements of the Earth.
  • Pyrokinesis: Generation and Control of fire
  • Aerokinesis: Generation and Control of Air
  • Geokinesis: Control of Earth/Rock
  • Hydrokinesis: Control of Water
  • Cryokinesis: Generation and Control of Ice
  • Weather Manipulation
  • Telepathy: Zatanna can use her magic to manipulate the minds of others. She has displayed the following abilities.
  • Read Minds
  • Memory Manipulation: She is able to wipe minds completely and/or remove specific memories.
  • Chlorokinesis: Control over plants
  • Thermokinesis: She has used this ability a few times to stay warm in frigid environments.
  • Superhuman Strength
  • Superhuman Durability
  • Flight
  • Force Field
  • Teleportation: Able to teleport herself and/or others to anywhere she desires.
  • Dimensional Travel
  • Probability Manipulation
  • Magical Awareness: supernatural sensitivity to occult activities and mystic phenomena.
  • Dispel: Able to remove illusions and holographic images that her opponents have set up.
  • Telekinesis
  • Elemental Conversion
  • Molecular Conversion
  • Regeneration: Able to heal herself and others
  • Size Alteration: She can increase or decrease her overall volume to nearly any size she chooses. The limits of this ability are subject only to the degree of power available to her at any one time. She has been seen using this ability to get down to the size of the Atom (about 6 inches tall at the time) to talk to him face-to-face.
  • Spectral Sight: She can see spiritual entities and travelers invisible to normal sight; she can perceive magical events at a great distance.
  • Elemental Transmutation: Zatanna has the ability to rearrange atoms and molecules in both inorganic and organic matter. She can change an object’s or creature's shape. In addition from one chemical into another.
  • Magical Manipulation: Zatanna is also capable of using all personal and universal magic
  • Extraction and Transportation of Souls: Able to extract and move souls from organic/inorganic structures to another organic/inorganic structure. In addition, she can attack her opponents by thrusting a soul at them. She only does this ability in dire situations.
  • Mystical Invulnerability: After casting this specific spell, she is safe from any offensive magic that comes her way or others.

AbilitiesEdit

Prestidigitation: Zatanna is skilled in stage magic, performing simple tricks and elaborate illusions.

Hand to Hand Combatant: She has also been taught conventional fighting skills by the Justice League, but favors using magic in place of them.

Occultist: as Chronicler of Magic she possesses an extensive understanding of Occult lore due to her Mystic Background

Hypnotist

Improvisation: She prepares specific spells (a couple of hundred) but improvises a good bit for the unpredictable situations she encounters.

Multi-lingual: Able to speak English, Spanish, and "Backwards Speech". As noted throughout the comics, she doesn't show any difficulty in speaking backwards when performing spells. It seems she can speak backward speech without hesitation and with clarity. Backwards Speech is most commonly known as Mnemonic Incantations.

GalleryEdit

see Zatanna Gallery

Behind the ScenesEdit

Hawkman04-01

Zatanna's debut in Hawkman #4, 1964.

Zatanna was created in 1964 by writer Gardner Fox and artist Murphy Anderson when it was decided that DC needed a magic-wielding heroine. To give her character a sense of history, Zatanna was made the daughter of legendary Golden Age magician John Zatara. Anderson envisioned Zatanna as being dressed similarly to her father and gave her a traditional magician's outfit complete with a top hat, yellow cummerbund, coattails, and fishnets. Though she has changed costumes several times throughout her history, this costume has proven to be Zatanna's most iconic and popular look. Zatanna was portrayed as searching for her lost father, which became a running theme throughout her early appearances in several DC titles, all edited by Julius Schwartz.

See AlsoEdit

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