The cover to my copy of Zatanna #13

Well, this is it…the beginning of the end. This is the last Zatanna issue penned by Paul Dini. I’ve delayed reviewing it because I had hoped the subsequent issues would touch on the story-arch moved forward in this issue; they have not. Even after realizing that I think I delayed because I thought that I could allow this wonderful series to live on in my mind.

But such childish ideas must be put aside, and our review must push forward.

The issue opens with Zatanna having a dream/flashback of a performance in Paris. It is here that we finally get real proof regarding what many have suspected; our beloved lovely Mikey was once a slovenly man. As the evening ends Mikey goes off to watch some French porn while Zatanna intends to live it up with some nice French gentlemen…until her dream is interrupted by the yamming of a cat outside.

The cat, apparently, is a bringer of prophecy. The vision it presents involves a symbol of good luck, Brother Night, and The Spectre. Knowing that if whatever is coming for her will involve The Spectre – and knowing it’s best to not go into anything uninformed when God’s Right-Hand Man is involved – Zatanna goes off to find the vengeful being.

Meanwhile, Brother Night has been busying himself in prison, tattooing a bunch of convicts and creating a following. Once he has enough the prisoners under his thrall they are mystically stripped of flesh and their bones create a ladder for Night’s escape. The guards try and stop him but ravens/crows attack. Detective Colton tries to grab the escaping (at a brisk stroll) man, but something reacts badly when they touch and the two are blasted apart. Amused by this Night enchants a dog to stand guard over Colton and as the evil being leaves he tells the detective to, “Say hello to Jenny Myers for me.” By brainwashing the minds of the people in a passing car Night is taken to a back-up safehouse and quickly reclaims it for himself.

Meanwhile Zatanna has found The Spectre as he is about to pass deadly judgement on an embezzler. The daughter of John Zatara tries to spare the man’s life by turning him into a literal rat, but the vengeful spirit kills the rat anyway. The Spectre is far from forthcoming with Zatanna, but confirms he has no issue with her and sees no reason why they would have any future altercations. Zatanna explains that she wants to keep it that way and The Spectre says the best way to do so would be to leave him alone.

Back on the Earthly plane Detective Colton has arrived at a psychiatric ward, where a few words with patient Jenny Myers confirms the detective’s worst fears; Brother Night is his father.

THE BOTTOM LINE: Buy it.

Good writing, a few transformations, some sexy women, and possibly the last Zatanna written by Paul Dini. Very little else matters.