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Zatara
125
150px-The Original Universe
Characteristics
Real Name Giovanni Zatara
Alias John Zatara
Relatives Sindella (wife deceased)
Zatanna
Zachary Zatara (nephew)
Affiliation All-Star Squadron
Eyes Blue
Hair Black
Later grey
Gender Male
Occupation Magician
First appearance Action Comics vol 1 #1 (Jun 1938)
Universe Pre-Crisis
Alternate versions see Zatara disambiguation
Zatara logo

History[]

To all appearances a simple stage magician, John Zatara actually had a gift for the use of true magic, and encouraged by Doctor Occult he used his magical abilities as a mystery man during the Second World War period. He later met and married a woman named Sindella of the Homo Magi, and their daughter Zatanna received an inheritance of even greater power than Zatara's own.

Emigrating from Italy with his family at age eight, young Giovanni (later anglicizing his name to John) Zatara was fascinated by tales his grandfather told of entertaining multitudes around the world with his magic acts. While boys his age were outside playing baseball, he was honing his slight-of-hand skills and learning about all forms of illusion. Coming of age, young John decided to take his act on the road, inheriting his grandfather's stage clothes and silk top hat. Taking to the road in early 1937, he was met with failure, his act barely suitable for the worst vaudeville stages. Looking to improve, he found a magic shop and was given a book to study by the man later known as Doctor Mist, part of his plans of raising up a suitable class of magic using humans.

Learning through study that he was able to cast real magic by speaking the command backwards, Zatara took to the stage again, this time met with great success, becoming one of the greatest illusionists of his day.

Touring the world, he was exposed to both great evil and good, using his abilities to help people while mainlining his guise as a stage magician. As others began using their magical abilities to fight crime, he delved into some of the other areas of his skills, coming to the notice of the Hidden City of the Homo Magi, an offshoot of homo sapiens who naturally wield magic. The daughter of their leader, Sindella, was chosen to make contact with him and the two fell in love.

Settling down and beginning a family, Zatara was blessed with a daughter, Zatanna, but was stunned and saddened when Sindella faked her death and returned to her people, leaving the grieving husband to raise his infant daughter alone.

Returning to the stage, Zatana took his young daughter with him on his trips around the world. As she grew up, she showed much promise as both a mage and a performer.

Zatara eventually sacrificed his life to save his daughter while they were both fighting against the terrible mystical repercussions of the great Crisis.


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