Mandrake The Magician, The Complete Series: The King Years: Volume One
Five out of five stars
There is no more intriguing and mysterious hero in the comics than Mandrake the Magician. With his powerful companion Lothar and his mysterious fortress called Xanadu, the man in the silk top hat and cape is capable of facing down the most powerful of enemies. All he needed to do was to perform his signature, “Mandrake gestures hypnotically” and he could make all living creatures with sight experience the wildest hallucinations.
In this collection, Mandrake battles what appears to be space aliens, a thief that flies into high-rise apartments on a magic carpet, what appears to be the ghost of a long dead border bandit and some “normal” criminals. A positive aspect of the stories is the relationship between Mandrake and Lothar. Although he is depicted as physically powerful and extremely loyal, Lothar is also characterized as intelligent and an equal partner to Mandrake.
Mandrake the Magician was my favorite comic strip when I was young, when the Sunday paper arrived I deliberately saved that strip for the last one read. It was my fundamental principle to always save the best for last. This book demonstrates once again why a young boy would do that.