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Action Comics #820

October 10, 2004

Quick Rating: Average
Title: Wail of the Banshee

The Silver Banshee returns for a face-off with the Creeper.

Writer: Chuck Austen
Art: Carlos D’Anda
Colors: Guy Major
Letters: Comicraft
Editor: Eddie Berganza
Cover Art: Joyce Chin & Arthur Adams
Publisher: DC Comics

First, the good news: this is not nearly as bad as the last several issues of Action Comics have been. The bad news, though, is that the reason it’s not as bad is because Superman barely appears in it. This is a Creeper story, with Superman making a cameo appearance as a deus ex machina which, when you consider the number of cancelled series the Creeper has left in his wake, is clearly what the readers were clamoring for.

The Silver Banshee returns this issue, securing a new human host. For some reason, this gives her a tongue longer than Gene Simmons, which she uses for various attempts at sexual innuendo, which has never exactly been a character trait she has exhibited before. She has no particular plan in this return, she just distracts Superman enough that he won’t be bothering her then walks around asking people to be afraid of her, at which point the Creeper shows up and obliges her.

Carlos D’Anda’s guest artwork works fairly well for this issue. He and Guy Major cast a dark, disturbing pallor across the comic that works with the frightening atmosphere the Banshee is intended to convey. They even manage to put Superman in this world without compromising the visual integrity of the character, which isn’t easy. As usual, it’s the artwork that elevates this issue.

In the end we get an epilogue that promises the return of a villain most readers were sick and tired of about ten years ago, and although there appears to be an attempt at putting a twist on him, it’s a twist that has been tried before and failed to make him any more interesting.

I imagine this was the Superman crew’s effort at a Halloween story this year. It could have been worse, but it could have been a lot better, too, which is something I find myself saying quite a bit these days.

Rating: 5/10

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