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  1. #1
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Default The face of the magical DCU: Doctor Fate vs. Zatanna vs. Wonder Woman

    DC does a crappy job of promoting anything not directly linked to Batman. We all know this. Marvel does not have this particular problem (it has others, but not this singular dependency problem).

    Marvel has no problem promoting Doctor Stange as the face of its Magical Department, while still leaving some room for others like the Scarlet Witch.

    It seems to me that DC needs to follow suit and select one hero as the magical face.

    I see three obvious candidates:

    1. Doctor Fate. The clear DC counterpart to Doctor Strange. Pros: has all the magical feats you could want (going back thru all of Fate's decades). Cons: that helmet leaves even less room for facial expression than Deadpool's mask.

    2. Zatanna. Similar to Scarlet Witch in that in most origins she's also a daughter of a powerful male figure. Pros: Female hero who has clearly and justly surpassed the elder male version. Cons: classic outfit isn't exactly cutting edge.

    3. Wonder Woman. Yes, she's really like DC's Thor, but that hasn't been working out for her all that great (esp with Zeus and Jason). Pros: instant familiarity and could finally finally own a corridor of the DCU like Supes and Bats do. Cons: would have to shift from physical strength and fighting to spells and such, still couldn't surpass either Zatanna nor Doctor Fate.

    My take: Fate is out. The helmet confines him to a supporting character at best. Zatanna vs Wonder Woman is the title bout IMO. I can't see them de-emphasizing her physical traits in favor of more magical ones.

    Zatanna gets my vote.

    You?
    Last edited by daBronzeBomma; 08-04-2019 at 07:31 AM.

  2. #2
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Choice #4: Raven.

    No immediate Marvel counterpart comes to mind. Pros: more modern public recognition than Fate or Zatanna thanks to TEEN TITANS GO! Cons: maybe too dark to be the face of the magical DCU?

  3. #3
    The Fastest Post Alive! Buried Alien's Avatar
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    How about Shazam?

    Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)
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  4. #4
    Legendary Member daBronzeBomma's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buried Alien View Post
    How about Shazam?

    Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)
    Same problem as Wonder Woman: mountain-busting strength and durability will always trump magical spell-casting in comic books. Those physical abilities would have be vastly de- emphasized for Shazam to work as the face of magic.

    Wonder Woman has had wildly different levels of strength crowdfunding on who's written her. Shazam was always shown to be close or equal to Superman.

    Magic needs spell- casting as the primary method.

    So maybe the title bout is really Zatanna vs Raven.

    Cuz we all know DC's Tim Hunter (BOOKS OF MAGIC) was powerless to stop himself from being ripped off by Harry Potter, right?

  5. #5
    Spectacular Member Batknight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buried Alien View Post
    How about Shazam?

    Buried Alien (The Fastest Post Alive!)

    So, DC's magic side has always been a bit...fractured. The fact is, most magic characters reside in the darker, mature, horror, Vertigo side of the DCU that Alan Moore set up in Swamp Thing and Gaiman refined in Books of Magic. Which mainly focused on characters like Constantine, Swamp Thing, Doctor Fate, The Spectre, The Phantom Stranger, Zatanna, Etrigan, and Sandman, etc. The magic side of the DCU IS dark, it's always been dark..and horror focused. While Wonder Woman and Shazam have always been regarded more as traditional superheroes who didn't have really any connection to those other characters. Even though they are also technically magic based. JLD is currently trying to fix this by integrating Wonder Woman more into this side of the DCU but she'll never be a super magic-based character as the others. And Shazam's light-hearted, whimsical tone makes him so different from the rest of DC's horror, magic side despite being magic's 'champion' Zatanna and Doctor Fate would probably make the most sense...but neither of them can really even hold down their own title. The most popular, DC magic character, when you get down to it, is probably John Constantine. With 300 issues of Hellblazer, and lots of other outside media.
    Last edited by Batknight; 08-04-2019 at 08:06 AM.

  6. #6
    Post Editing OCD Confuzzled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    SMagic needs spell- casting as the primary method.

    So maybe the title bout is really Zatanna vs Raven.
    It is and Zatanna would be the winner as she would function better as a solo character than Raven (other than Dick, just not a fan of Titans going solo, and even the Nightwing thing can be so inconsistent).

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Confuzzled View Post
    It is and Zatanna would be the winner as she would function better as a solo character than Raven (other than Dick, just not a fan of Titans going solo, and even the Nightwing thing can be so inconsistent).
    Really? Not even Wally?

  8. #8
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Zatanna is probably DC's most popular magic character, next to maybe Raven thanks to Teen Titans.

    Dr. Fate is basically their Dr. Strange equivalent, just not as popular or as consistent. I mean, how many Dr. Fates have there been other then Kent Nelson?

    Wonder Woman is a magic character like Superman is a Sci-Fi character. She's their premier female hero who just happens to sometimes get involved with magic or it concerns her villains.

  9. #9
    Post Editing OCD Confuzzled's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Agent Z View Post
    Really? Not even Wally?
    I mean, with the push to make Barry more like Wally, Solo Wally doesn't really seem as unique a concept any longer.

  10. #10
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Zatanna.

    Dr. Fate is close, but I think Zatanna is a slightly bigger name and more popular, so it should probably be her.

    I don't regard Wonder Woman as a magical character. I view a distinction between coming from a mythical background and being magical. She may have magical tools, but the Amazons themselves have never displayed sorcery that lines up with the area Fate and Zatanna are in and rely on tech or gifts from the Gods. Diana is known for strength, not spell casting, and the only significant spellcaster in her world is Circe.

  11. #11
    Futurist Marvell2100's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by daBronzeBomma View Post
    Choice #4: Raven.

    No immediate Marvel counterpart comes to mind. Pros: more modern public recognition than Fate or Zatanna thanks to TEEN TITANS GO! Cons: maybe too dark to be the face of the magical DCU?
    Wiccan maybe?

  12. #12
    Futurist Marvell2100's Avatar
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    I'd choose Dr Fate. The helmet would add a cool aspect. They could have it so that no one would know who(or what) Fate really is.

  13. #13
    Ultimate Member Lee Stone's Avatar
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    I'd choose Dr. Fate also.
    The helmet adds a more ominous feel and lends to the mysteries of magic, which helps give the idea that true magic is kept hidden from normal folks.

    I imagine that if you were to actually meet Dr. Fate you'd be entering a rabbit hole regarding the fabric of reality and your perception of the world would change.
    He's not someone you'd just buddy up and have a beer with.
    "There's magic in the sound of analog audio." - CNET.

  14. #14
    Astonishing Member kjn's Avatar
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    I think the question is too narrow. It's like asking who is DC's cosmic hero? Green Lantern? Superman? The Legion of Super-Heroes?

    I don't know much about Doctor Fate, but while Constantine, Zatanna, Raven, and Wonder Woman all are connected with DC's magical side, they are all connected to it in different ways and are thus suitable for different types of stories.

    Constantine and Raven are really suitable for personal stories, but they fundamentally relate to people in different ways. Zatanna is really the most flexible, but should always bring elegance and showmanship with her. Wonder Woman is on the mythical side, like SiegePerilous02 mentioned. She certainly could take a larger role in DC's magical side, but like Swamp Thing she's always a bit to the side. The way Tynion is using her in JLD is just about perfect for that.
    «Speaking generally, it is because of the desire of the tragic poets for the marvellous that so varied and inconsistent an account of Medea has been given out» (Diodorus Siculus, The Library of History [4.56.1])

  15. #15
    Moderator Frontier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kjn View Post
    I think the question is too narrow. It's like asking who is DC's cosmic hero? Green Lantern? Superman? The Legion of Super-Heroes?
    Green Lantern is probably their most direct one, in my opinion.

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