When you're a kid, growing up is the last thing you want to do.

Actually, growing up is the last thing we want to do too, and we still remember when the original Tim Burton Batman was in theaters

(::collapses onto table and weeps uncontrollably::)

However, given the chance to say a magic word and instantly become an adult with superpowers? You don't need the Wisdom of Solomon to know what our answer would be. SHAZAM!

This week marked the release of the SHAZAM! hardcover, which collects the backup tales from Justice League featuring the character's New 52 debut. Re-reading this excellent story reminded us why we loved not only the character but the entire concept as well, which is why this week we're giving you 5.2 Reasons Shazam! is Pure Magic!


1. Geoff Johns

Need we say more? Johns is already quite adept at re-imagining characters—incorporating what came before with new ideas and new directions. Heck, just look at what he did with Hawkman and Hawkgirl during his JSA run. However, Geoff especially shines when he takes on a character he really loves, which is clearly the case here.

2. Gary Frank

Johns' Action Comics run with artist Gary Frank ranks as one of our faves for the character, and we wrote an entire column last year on why we loved Batman: Earth One. So seeing the two team up together again for a Shazam tale was well worth the strange looks we received from running down the street screaming in joy. Just look at Frank's art on this!


3. A Modern Age Billy Batson

Sure at first Billy seemed like a bit of a jerk (we actually kinda love that), but after all has been said and done, he's a good kid. He's lived a rough life, so we understand why he's a bit standoffish, but the moment he becomes Shazam, we connected. We would act the exact same way. There's a childish glee and fun to him to rings so true. We'll always love the Holy Moley Billy of old, but we're greatly looking forward to seeing more of this Modern Day version.