Last week, the world of astrology was rocked when science! determined that, despite the fact that they appear in reliable newspapers all over the world, the 12 Zodiac signs might not be an accurate way of predicting the future. I know, I was shocked too.

The reasoning here is that in the 2,000 years since the ancient Babylonians first determined that people born in September were cursed by the fates to be flirty and fashionable, the motion of the stars has rendered their horoscopic powers inaccurate. Some have even gone so far as to suggest the addition of a 13th Zodiac sign -- which, seriously, good luck getting the people into horoscopes to add a 13th anything -- represented by a mythological figure who didn't make the original cut for not having a name that would sound good as a James Bond villain: Ophiuchus:

It's the most significant attempt to change fortune-telling technology since Highlights Magazine unsuccessfully lobbied to have Goofus and Gallant added to the Tarot in 1954, but really: If we're going to start overhauling the Zodiac and adding in Creepy Uncle Snakepants to the charts, why don't we just scrap the whole thing and start over?

And today, that's exactly what I've done. Who needs water-bearers and rams when we've got an all-new, all-awesome chart for twelve brand new ComicsAlliance Zodiac signs!

For those of you wondering if I have the qualification to determine a new system that will govern our futures, consider this: A solid 8% of you will be trading up in the world of fate and fortunes from being represented by a goat to being represented by Batman. I defy any of you to find me a goat -- any goat, even the 1967 Pontiac GTO -- that is more awesome than Batman.

Anyway, for those of you born while the stars over over the skies of Gotham City I've got good news and bad news. The bad news is that you're pretty much fated to have some rough times early on in your life, and you'll probably end up dealing with at least one major catastrophe per month. The good news, though, is that you have the drive and determination necessary to conquer these problems, as long as you apply yourself. The key to victory is in the preparation, so prepare for the worst and you might just come out on top.

As far as relationships, the constant need to be one step ahead of everyone else can be off-putting to some (especially if it leads to overconfidence in one's own abilities to get out of tricky situations), but those who do like you will be devoted. Very devoted. Like, write-weekly-love-letters-about-you-and-post-them-in-public-forums devoted. You should avoid clowns -- seriously -- but other circus folk will make for excellent and devoted friends. And oddly enough, so will domestic servants.

As an Aquarius, you were saddled with carrying water around to everyone, but under the new system, you're swimming along in a river of cash as a star-ordained Scrooge McDuck. And again, I'm not dissing ancient superstitious traditions or anything, but if you'd rather have a pitcher of water than three cubic acres of cash, well, I don't know what to tell you.

Aside from a tendency to wring every last dime out of their purchases, McDucks are widely known for their love of two things: Adventure and profit. They get restless if they stay in one place too long without trying something new, and quickly grow bored with routines. They're happiest when faced with new challenges to overcome and seek to test themselves in a variety of ways, especially when there's a handy profit to be had, be it a hard-won love, a new skill, or beautiful, beautiful money.

The downside to all this is that McDucks tend to see other people in terms of commodities. As devoted as they can be to the chase, for instance, they quickly grow bored of friends and lovers who run out of new experiences. They rarely appreciate the other things people do for them, and tend to value their possessions as souvenirs of their exploits more than the people with whom those exploits were shared. Also? Crazy competitive. Play Monopoly with a McDuck and you're going to have a worse time than you'd have from just, you know, playing Monopolly.

McDucks don't get along with each other, and while they like things, they are not what you'd call "pet people." Especiallly when it comes to Beagles.

You know what they didn't have 2,000 years ago when the original Zodiac was created, aside from, you know, everything? Corporate sponsorship. Today, however, that stuff is all over the place, and really, how can our horoscopes tell us anything about the future if they're not even caught up with the present? Thus, say goodbye to Pisces and say hello to the extreme horoscopic crunch of Pizza-Blasted Doritos!

The people born under this sign often feel overshadowed by their more well-known peers -- we all have a Nacho Cheese and a Cool Ranch in our lives that always gets the credit, am I right? -- but once they open up, they're recognized for being unique and bringing something to the table that's all too rare in this world.

Unfortunately, PBDs also tend to make rash decisions that they later regret, like, say, eating an entire bag of something referred to as "Pizza Blasted" in one sitting, and their extreme personalities often have difficulty finding widespread acceptance. Even so, they do their best to make everything a little better, and usually find a way to leave their mark, albeit usually only as flavored dust on one's fingers.

In the old Zodiac, Aries was the sign associated with hot-tempered manliness, and I don't want to spend all my time pointing out flaws in with the ancient Babylonians, but really, if they didn't see my criticisms it coming, they weren't all that great at predicting the future, now were they? Either way, representing your angriest sign with a sheep, even a tough sheep that has horns, isn't all that great. Representing it with six-time World Champion The Macho Man Randy Savage, however? Now we're getting somewhere.

Extroverted, loud and quick to anger, The Macho Man Randy Savages are often difficult for others to understand. They can come off as jittery and overbearing, and are even known to completely disrupt others when they feel that something can be done a better way. They aren't exactly known for tact, often snapping right into problems without thinking them through first and recommending things that may in fact make a bad situation worse. Sadly, this can often result in someone ending up in a danger zone.

On the bright side, TMMRSes have little patience for boredom, and go out of their way to make things exciting, both for themselves and others. As a result, Scrooge McDucks -- who always need a little excitement -- often gravitate towards The Macho Man Randy Savages for the thrills that come from such a friendship, but relationships with Pizza-Blasted Doritos never last long.

Much like the McDuck, a Ray Smuckles is often the object of jealousy for his good fortune, but with the key difference being that Rays never seem to have to work that hard to get what they want. Things tend to come naturally to them, which only makes others around them more jealous and as a result, Rays often have difficulty finding close friends. When they do find them, however, Rays are fiercely loyal and, despite occasionally treating those around them with the impatience that comes from always getting what you want, they will go out of their way to help friends.

Despite succeeding on good fortune rather than hard work, Rays are often critical of others who don't have their advantages, and very defensive when the abilities they do have are called into question.

Those born under this sign tend to be pretty laid back and rarely seek out adventure over comfort, but despite appearances, they have a hidden reserve of talent and strength when presented with unavoidable obstacles.

Also, they are likely to be cats, and favor exactly one article of clothing and two accessories.

If a lifetime of reading comics has taught me anything about the Zodiac, it's that Gemini represents duality, and also trying to kill Batman by flipping a coin. That's a pretty solid theme (especially when compared to, say, fish) but once again, the symbolism kind of drops the ball. I mean, I'm sure a set of twins was totally the most mind-blowing thing you could imagine back when it was a sign that Zeus had blessed your crops or whatever, but nowadays, we have technology that can give us two Jackie Chans at the same time. It does not hold up.

Plus, despite what you may have heard from Tomax and Xamot, twins are actually different people, and the struggle of duality is one that's largely internal. Thus, we keep the theme and go with a new representative: Detroit Metal City's Lord Johannes Krauser II. He even has a 2 right there in his name!

Krauser IIs often find themselves torn between two extremes, and while they may not be as pronounced as performing in an evilcore death metal band while wanting to write indie pop, theyre likely to be rocking iPods loaded up with equal parts She & Him and Slayer's Reign In Blood. As a result, they have a hard time finding happiness in what they do, wondering if they made the right choice, or if they've somehow been forced into doing something when they'd rather be doing the opposite. Their relations with others (particularly Batmans and Ray Smuckleses, who always seem to know exactly what they do) can be very strained, as their sense of responsibility goes to war with their annoyance at having to deal with what others need from them.

If they're able to focus themselves and find balanace, however, they can find that they excel at a wide variety of things -- and even that the thing they didn't want to do gives them the most happiness. Also, the strain of always trying to do two things at once makes them very productive. You should see how much they can do in one second.

Well really, what did you expect the new version of Cancer to be?

Morons! You've got morons on your payroll! And sadly, if you were born under the sign of Cobra Commander, it's usually your fault.

Yes, while Cobra Commanders are given to immense creativity and boundless ambition, those two traits are unfortunately fated to outmatch their actual ability to get things done, and while they often indulge in elaborate schemes, they generally neglect to factor in that most of these plots can be unraveled by something astoundingly simple.

As a result, they're often frustrated, though they rarely look to their own faults, instead touting their own abilities and blaming failures on those around them. More than any other sign, the Cobra Commanders are prone to being intensely paranoid, although to be fair, those around them usually are working against them in some way or another.

Even with the deck stacked against them, though, the Cobra Commanders have a few things going for them. For one, they're persistent, and even years of setbacks rarely deter them from going after a single goal once they've set their mind to accomplish it. And for another, no matter how strange, silly or outright stupid their plans might seem from the outside, they have the strange ability to actually make them work.

Or at least come close to making them work.

Does your birthday fall between mid-September and Halloween? Well, I've got some bad news for you: You're a Dracula. That mans that you draw on others to an almost parasitic extent, and while it's a good thing to rely on your friends for strength, you're not exactly what we'd call a "giver." Instead, your very presence leaves those around you feeling drained, and while they might resent it, they find it awfully difficult to get rid of you once you've got your hooks in.

Even worse, your default mood hovers somewhere between "smarmy" and "pompous," constantly fueled by the fact that you actually have been around a while and learned a lot -- though probably not as much as you think. YOu consider yourself to be better than most of those around you, and while it's true that you have some talent, it all just makes people want to punch you right in the face.

But here's the good news: You're a Dracula. Specifically, you're
a Zodiacula. And that's awesome.

In the language of the old Zodiac, Libra represented the idea of balance, and once again, chose to illustrate this in the most uncreative way possible: Scales. Not exactly going to spark a lot of interest with that bit of literalism, are we? So instead, I give you Spider-Man.

Unfortunately for those of you saddled with these stars in your life, the themes of balance still apply. For every great thing that happens (like, say, getting super-powers or having an adoring and gorgeous love interest) you're going to get something equally terrible (the uncle dies and the love interest takes a long walk off a tall bridge).

Consequently, you're going to come to dread the good things, finding yourself completely unable to enjoy them because you're waiting for the other shoe to drop, while the bad things that come along in the cosmic shake-out will be greeted with relief, as it means things getting back to the baseline. Your friends might find you to be a downer when you're around during celebrations, but they'll be glad you're there to tackle the rough spots with your own personal brand of "luck."

No restructuring of astrological magic would be complete without the inclusion of a few weird-ass animals, and mine is no exception, which is why fall gets under way with the rise of Bulbasaur.

People born under this sign are full of apparent contradictions that often lead others to underestimate them. Bulbasaurs are the first to be involved in things, but are often late bloomers. They're steadfast and rooted, but highly adaptable. They're... dinosaurs... but also trees. It's pretty weird.

I'm sure there are those of you out there who are skeptical of the new system, and for good reason. By removing the ancient and revered signs that have millennia of mysticism attached to them, it's easy to say that I've taken all the magic out of things for the sake of a few jokes about things I like. And to that, I can only respond by pointing to my final sign, the most magical of all: Tarot: Witch of the Black Rose.

Tarots are distinguished from the other signs by a complete and utter lack of shame. Don't get me wrong, that's not always a bad thing, and Tarots are free from the various unwarranted neuroses and generally free of the self-doubt that plagues Krausers. The tradeoff, though, is that they often don't worry about the things that maybe they should. But with that shamelessnes comes an undeniable appeal -- even those who might not like Tarots often find themselves completely obsessed with them.

Out of all the new signs, Tarots are also the most likely to find themselves in problems tat it seems no one else has ever had to deal with.

And I think that's enough magic for all of us.

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