Master of Puppets

Zatanna #8

Zatanna confesses to her therapist that she’s had a nearly lifelong fear of… puppets? And this isn’t just some comedic phobia either — she doesn’t remember how the fear started, but for any professional magician working in the live entertainment business, there are puppeteers everywhere. And the ones that bug her the most are the Merry-O-Nettes, the puppets owned by an old vaudevillian named Oscar Hempell. Why do those puppets frighten her so? Is there a way she can get at the truth? And will learning the truth be worse than not knowing?

Verdict: Thumbs up. This was a really enjoyable comic book. There’s some great material with Zatanna’s backstory, some excellently chilling stuff, and, if you’ve got any kind of fear about puppets yourself, the kind of stuff that’s going to give you a serious complex. And Cliff Chiang‘s artwork is, as ever, amazingly beautiful and fun. Any doubts I’ve had about this series are definitely finished — this is a wonderfully fun comic.

Tiny Titans #35

Talon reveals to Robin that he’s actually the sidekick of Owlman, a superhero just like Batman from a parallel universe. Robin doesn’t believe him, despite all their many similarities, so Raven creates a portal to Talon’s world, which promptly leads to a mini-invasion of alternate-universe Titans. But are these evil Titans? Or do they just have funny-colored costumes? And how badly is Talon going to mess things up before it’s all over?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Pretty cool issue, with a lot of clever comedy bits.

Today’s Cool Links:

  • Holy cow, Vertigo is finally going to publish Grant Morrison and Frank Quitely’s famously-trippy “Flex Mentallo” series!
  • David Brothers has another of his great posts on race in comics.
  • Here are some of the highlights of the classic D&D “Tomb of Horrors” module, as enacted by a bunch of cartoon animals.

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