5 Things to Like About Zorro #1

Matt Wagner on Zorro? Had to read it. And though I understand Chris Sims' point that you don't see much of Zorro in it, I still liked it quite a lot...

1. The art directionWagner may not be drawing it (which would be mucho cool!), but he's credited for "art direction", which seems to be good enough for me. Whether he or Francesco Francavilla is responsible for layouts like this is academic. The book has a good look, great design, and fits the Zorro story.

2. It's the Zorro that inspired Batman
Between such scenes as Zorro visiting a cave under his family home as a boy and instilling great fear into his enemies as an adult, you'd be hard-pressed to deny that frequent Batman scribe Matt Wagner is purposely drawing parallels between the characters. In current DC continuity, the Waynes were coming out of a Zorro movie when they were shot, which helped inspire Bruce to take up the mask. Wagner gives us a Zorro would could very much have inspired the Dark Knight. There's also a veiled reference to the Phantom, and so a certain reverence for the pulp heroes of yesteryear.

3. And yet, he's somehow better than Batman
Bruce Wayne required a personal tragedy to transform him. For the young Diego de la Vega, an injustice directed at someone else is transformative enough.

4. The Native American elements
The use of Isabel Allende's Zorro novel is obvious here - unless I'm mistaken, she invented Zorro's Indian mother and grandmother - and it works well. It gives further reason for Diego to adopt the fox (el zorro) as his totem animal, and greater depth to his character. I know of the novel, but haven't read it. Maybe the series is freely adapted from the book? In any case, coming to it fresh, this new take on the character holds my interest.

5. And hey, swashes are still buckled
Very little swordplay at this point, but Diego's destiny is evident. I'm sure the first scene of swordplay we see will be well worth the wait.


Anonymous said...

Since Zorro was created back in 1919 was a popular cult character in the pulp and in movies when the creators of Batman were kids. Kane in fact specifically named Zorro as an influence in creating Batman.

Of course the creation of Zorro was inspired by The Scarlet Pimpernel.


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