The Comicon Advent Calendar: Day 13 – A ‘Mazing Man Christmas

by Richard Bruton

Time again for the seasonal delights of the Comicon Advent Calendar. Have you been naughty? Have you been nice? We’re not like the other fella, we’re giving you this gift no matter what! Today, time for a bit of amazing… well, no, actually time for a bit of the wonderful ‘Mazing Man and ‘Christmas Open House’…

Created by Stephen DeStefano and Bob Rozakis, ‘Mazing Man was a little hero with a big heart who was all about making the world a better place, one person at a time. He had a series that ran 12 issues in 1986, with three specials in 1987, 1988, and 1990 – and it was one of the most wonderfully sweet, gently funny of things. There were no supervillains, no world-changing events, just that sort of low-key, everyday heroism that comes from being the best person you can be, helping others out, being kind and caring, being a good friend.

That was the essence of ‘Mazing Man, dressed in his cobbled together costume and dumpster found helmet – the local eccentric with a heart of gold who just happened to dress up like a superhero.

 

“In this crazy world we all need a friend like ‘Mazing Man” – That was the tagline for the DC series, and it’s absolutely right – perhaps more so today than it ever was.

So, as a special treat, from Mazing Man Special #2 in Winter 1988, here’s Christmas Open House by Bob Rozakis and Stephen DeStefano, with inks by Steve Leialoha. Because, when you’re as sweet as ‘Maze is, Christmas is a very important time, all about getting together the whole family together, no matter how you care to define family…

For ‘Maze, it means gathering everyone together – Denton, the writer (who’s also a dog – just go with it!), his sister KP, Brenda and Eddie with the new baby, and Guido… who ‘Maze has convinced to turn up in a specially bought Santa suit…

Except that’s not Guido, that’s KP and Denton’s Grandma… and she’s crashing Christmas.

Grandma is just wonderful, all full of Christmas spirit. Well, she will be as soon as the rum and the eggnog kick in anyway. But for the moment, not a happy Grandma…

‘Maze is in and out the house, desperate to see where Guido’s got to, worried that he’s got in an accident. Inside, Grandma’s getting sozzled, Brenda and Eddie’s baby keeps getting lost, and the party keeps getting bigger and bigger, thanks to ‘Maze’s habit of inviting everyone he meets to come to the party, such is his sweet-natured way – the cops, the local bag lady, the entire Tirado family, the carolers he bumps into, everyone and anyone.

There are fun things going on, there’s hi-jinks happening, and there’s a sense of the everyday happiness of just getting together and spending time with friends and family. Heck, even Grandma’s getting into the swing of things.

Anyway, eventually, after plenty of panicking and fretting from ‘Maze, Guido finally turns up. But now that he’s here, the Santa suit’s gone missing. And so’s Grandma.

All ‘Maze wanted was to get everyone together for one big moment, one great picture with the appearance of Santa. And now it looks like that’s just not going to happen. Poor ‘Mazing Man…

But NO! There’s a twist in the tale… well, not really, something as lovingly done, as full of love, as sweet and sentimental in the best way as ‘Mazing Man is never not going to end on a downer at Christmas. Heck no.

So, just like ‘Mazing Man, make sure you reconnect this Christmas, no matter where you are, no matter how far apart you are from loved ones, get on the phone, hit them up on FaceTime, and make someone you love happy.

 

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