MYSTIK U #2/ Written by Alisa Kwitney/ Art by Michael Norton, Jordie Bellaire, and Deron Barrett/ Edited by Marie Javins, Alex Antone, and Brittney Holzer/ Published by DC Comics/ Released: January 31, 2018
Mystik U #2 is the halfway point of the mini-series. Previously in Mystik U, Zatanna accidentally casts her father into hell at one of their Vegas magic shows, not realizing she could wield the power of the mystic arts. She is then accepted into the prestigious Mystik University. Following an attack on a freshman student it becomes apparent to the Dean of the school that Zatanna or one of her new friends—Sebastian Faust, the Enchantress, Sargon the Sorcerer, or new character named Pia Morales—will turn into the Malevolence.
Our return to Mystik U leads to Zatanna struggling with her magick. She has been having one-on-one lessons with Mr. E. Zatanna is still conflicted about her father’s disappearance despite her teachers’ indifference. We get a taste of the possible power of the Malevolence as the group is made to conduct elemental energies together. While holding hands the group conjures a dark cloud. While it is not clear who created the presence, Zatanna did let go first and has the most trouble keeping her concentration. This could lead readers to ask some serious questions about our protagonist.
Zatanna is later invited to join a sorority with less than good intentions. After drinking the “nectar of the gods,” Zatanna oversteps boundaries with Sebastian leading to more tension between the two. This issue is heavily focused on the romance between these two characters. I loved the high school-ish, almost “One Tree Hill”–type chase between them. Despite warnings from Pia and June, Zatanna continues with the sorority until she in over her head. In a last ditch effort she calls for help as she is backed into a corner.
This issue is a whopping 48 pages and holds a $5.99 price tag. However, it is well worth the splurge. I loved the first issue, and this follow-up did not disappoint. This series feels like a cross between Hogwarts, DC Comics’ Gotham Academy, and Image’s Morning Glories. It’s a classic high-school drama with a mix of magic. The art on this series has been top notch. I particularly enjoyed the moments between Zatanna and Sebastian while she was under the influence of the nectar. The vivid change in color scheme from the rest of the pages differentiates Zatanna’s mindset in that moment.
I’m eager for the next issue seeing as this one left us on an interesting cliffhanger between Zatanna and Sebastian.
Verdict: 5 out of 5 blood oaths.
In addition to writing and tweeting into the void, Elizabeth Garcia enjoys applying ethical and political theory to modern comics while wearing leggings and drinking wine with her cat on her beat-up couch.