Anybody who knows anything about writer Paul Dini knows
he has a thing for Zatanna. Actually, thanks to Dini, anybody
reading comics and possessing a pulse should have a thing
for Zatanna. So it makes a lot of sense that eventually,
Bruce Wayne should have a thing for Zatanna.
Two things stand in the way, of course. As long as Bruce
Wayne is driven by the demons that make him Batman, he can
never know true love. Gee, it sounds like a gypsy curse.
The other thing that keeps this book from ending the way
we would want it to is that heck, Grant Morrison is about
to either kill Bruce or get rid of those demons.
Actually, Morrison already did, way back in 52.
Yet conveniently enough, Dini either doesn't remember that
or chose to ignore it. Either way, it makes for greater
dramatic tension, and a sense of loss. You might also remember
that Zatanna once mind-wiped Batman, and Dini doesn't so
much ignore it as make it a lightly inconvenient fact of
The book he writes, however, is not Driven Vigilantes
In Love, but Detective Comics. So at the heart
of the story has to be some sort of mystery getting resolved.
This time around, it's the mystery of the new lap on which
the dummy Scarface sits. Dini brings things back around
to the very beginning of his run on this title, and makes
Scarface even creepier, if you could believe that's possible.
Ultimately, the book takes a sort of cop-out on whether
or not the wooden gangster could be real, but as usual for
Dini, the characterizations and the dialogue are just so
strong that if you're left feeling slightly unsatisfied,
you don't notice until the next day.
Dustin Nguyen and Derek Fridolfs deliver a solid though
slightly cartoony take on the Gotham City fun, but somehow
that makes Zatanna all the more alluring. She's literally
an impossible girl, so why not just crank it up and acknowledge
her as a cartoon character we love?