They’re two of DC’s most notable heroines, and in Paul Dini’s original graphic novel they come together to solve a magic-fueled crime. Black Canary is a formidable martial artist with a super sonic scream, and Zatanna is one of the DC universe’s most powerful magicians – together they’re a force to be reckoned with. Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell is a fun, quick read for anyone looking to enjoy a superhero story with less tie-in material. Bloodspell was not particularly mind-blowing or earth-shattering, but the book is not without its merit. Readers follow the titular characters as they combine the best of their skills to stop a curse set in motion by one of Canary’s enemies, hopefully before the curse comes after them.
Overall Score: 6.7 out of 10
Creativity of Concept: 5/10
Superhero team-ups are nothing new. I can’t say I’ve ever sat down and wondered what it would be like if Black Canary and Zatanna teamed up to solve a crime, but I’m certainly glad to have the answer anyway. Dini has given new fans to DC a great spot to jump in if they’re looking to expand their knowledge of the characters. Complete with a Green Arrow cameo, the concept is a well-founded superhero tale.
Artist Joe Quinones created lovely artwork for the novel. The style is very straightforward and colorful and accompanies the storytelling well. Especially for any new readers, clarity in the art style can be extremely helpful in staying focused on some of the finer points of the narrative. It has a very Justice League Unlimited feel, which is refreshing.
Bloodspell is a relatively quick read. There did not seem to be any noticeable plot holes or areas where the reader may lose interest. That being said, there were some scenes that felt awkward; for example, a raunchy few pages depicting a sexual encounter between Black Canary and Green Arrow. There was nothing inherently dirty or offensive about the scene, but it did feel as though it did not quite match the rest of the book.
For veteran comic readers and readers that prefer darker and grittier narrative, Black Canary and Zatanna: Bloodspell may be a title to skip. However, for new readers or fans that like to stay on the lighter side, I would certainly recommend it.