The Zachary Zatara wiki last edited by hushicho on 09/23/14 03:59PM View full history

Origin

"Zachary Zatara"

Zachary Zatara is the cousin of Zatanna and the nephew of the late Zatara, Zatanna's father. He came into his own identity in the wake of Infinite Crisis, although it's indicated that he may have been trained by Zatanna at a younger age. Like his cousin, he is able to cast spells using backwards incantations as a focus.

His personality tends to be a contentious and aggressive one, with a high opinion of himself. However, this may in part be due to the fact that his time on the Teen Titans was known for extremely high team instability and questionable leadership, and thus tinted his further interactions with costumed crusaders. While some may see Zach's attitude as arrogant, it may in truth be more accurate to call it a post-modern approach to magical superheroics.

Creation

Zachary Zatara was created by Geoff Johns and Tony Daniel. He first appeared in Teen Titans #34

Character Development

Zachary briefly joined the Teen Titans, for a period of approximately a year. He boasted himself as being "the world's greatest and most popular teenaged magician", which seemed to be true, judging by his thriving tour and persistent popularity. During his time on the Titans, he developed an attachment to Raven, though nothing ever came of it. He eventually popped up in a number of independent appearances, although as typical of the period some were plot threads that were never resolved. Eventually, he popped up as a fairly regular recurring character in Zatanna's solo series, though it's noteworthy that almost none of Zach's appearances seem entirely consistent with any of the others.

Teen Titans

Kid Devil defending his friend

During the One Year Later story arc, Zachary joined the Teen Titans. As a Titan, Zach formed a close relationship with Kid Devil, eventually helping his new friend find Neron and get his powers, though this was not exactly his intention. However, following a disastrous mission in New Azarath, Zatara chose to leave the team and pursue a career.

Zachary thinking on Raven

The newly reformed Teen Titans team visited Zatara in Tokyo, in hopes that he might assist them in locating the lost Raven. He not only answered that he didn't know where she was, he further explained that his time with the Titans had become an embarrassment to him. However, looking to a photograph of Raven he had kept, he had an impulse to help them, but too late; they had left as he requested.

Zachary briefly joined up with the Titans during the events of World War III, where the team tried to stop Black Adam's murderous rampage in Greece. However, this was only a temporary reaffiliation. He also assisted Superman by super-charging him with solar energy as he was filling in for his cousin at the Metropolis Dome. For some time, Zach remained in Metropolis and participated in a number of events related to superheroes magical and otherwise, seeming to become something of a regular presence there.

Zachary in "52" talking with Raven

In a backup feature of Teen Titans, Zachary, Black Alice and Traci 13 were sent to an illusionary world where Zachary was apparently married. However, he remembered events differently and worked with Black Alice and Traci 13 to defeat the villain who sent them to that weird world with their magic. This singular storyline is regarded as apocryphal, however, considering numerous elements of it wildly incongruous with previous established continuity, including Zach's age making certain elements highly unlikely.

After the struggle against Black Adam, Zach visited Zatanna in Las Vegas and threw an unexpected party in her room along with Bunny. After a spat with his cousin, the party was cleared out, but when he returned to apologize, he found her attacked by fire demons. The two work together to banish the demons and reminisce; Zatanna had taught Zach many of his tricks. Despite their differences, Zach still wishes for his cousin to attend one of his shows, even if for some reason he seems to be no longer filling the Metropolis Dome or touring the world.

Performing

Disappointed when Zatanna doesn't show up, Zach decides to investigate after Bunny calms him down. Once he arrives, the cast and crew tell Zachary that Zatanna his disappeared with Sonny Raymond, who is actually Benjamin Raymond. Once he finds her, he manages to rescue her from the immediate threat, and the two unite against the threat of the demon Mammon. To distract the demon, Zachary handily controls the cars around them to strike Mammon, giving Zatanna enough time to show mercy to Raymond and transform him into solid gold. Convincing Mammon that this will cause much more desire and greed among the mortals, Mammon approves and leaves them. After this, Zatanna finally manages to catch a front row seat at one of Zach's performances.

The next time we see the two is following a dual performance, and Zach is seduced by a Yuki-onna, who sets them against each other.

Powers

Zachary talking about his powers

Zachary Zatara can use magic to a variety of effects by speaking a backwards incantation like his cousin. His magical field of influence is especially strong, possibly even greater than his cousin, as long as he deals with inanimate objects. However, directly affecting complex living organisms diminishes the permanence of any spell effects, and something as complex as a humanoid makes the effects brief indeed; Superman was only able to be super-charged for a couple of minutes.

Nonetheless, Zach's command of inanimate objects is significant, as a single word and a gesture was enough to restore a demolished city block to its previous state.

Alternate Version

In the story Arc Titans Of Tomorrow it is revealed that Zachary becomes a member of Titans of Tomorrow and goes by the name Zatara. This future version of the Teen Titans has been erased as of the present.

Inconsistencies

Zachary Zatara, while mainly a minor supporting character, has boasted a number of significant inconsistencies between appearances causing more discussion and controversy than such a character typically would. These include variations in personality, motivation, explicitly-addressed powers, relationships, and behavior, not to mention history. While the most questionable storyline involving Zach (or at least, someone called Zatara) was the "Coven of Three" one, for its virtually impossible claims at his backstory to that point and personality completely at odds with his established one, even his initial appearances in Teen Titans didn't quite manage to match. Additionally, after what Zach explicitly stated, it seemed odd that he would not only pick up superheroics again, but with the team he multiple times expressed high distaste for, and after quitting it and refusing to join them again under no uncertain circumstances.

For a time, his appearances seemed to gain a sort of consistency as a reliable presence in Metropolis, and he showed up in a number of issues set there. However, a storyline was introduced with Zach meeting Mark Merlin that seemed immediately to be forgotten about, and soon Zach vanished again.

When he showed up in Zatanna's solo series, he was inexplicably dialed back to the small-time, although this may have been solely in the setting of Las Vegas. Nothing was mentioned of any previous appearances, nor was anything made of the fact that Zach was established to be world-famous, successful enough to headline at the Metropolis Dome, and at least at one time, the most popular teenaged magician bar none. The last appearance to date of Zach, in that same series, once again altered his personality almost entirely, although this last story also made a number of explicitly incorrect claims regarding the Zatara line and their magic, so it is of dubious accuracy in the first place.

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