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Action Comics Annual 1

Action Comics Annual 1, from 1987.

Action Comics Annual 1, from 1987.

When you say “Art Adams” and “Annual,” what probably comes to mind are the four X-Men annuals he pencilled for Marvel…

…sometimes overlooked is his work on DC’s Action Comics Annual 1 from 1987.

Before I go into the annual’s actual story, just wanna talk about how this was Annual 1 for the series. Action Comics had of course been around for about 50 years, so when I bought this annual off the rack back in the day, I’d assumed, “Okay, there were probably a bunch of other Action annuals over the years, but they’re now renumbering them and starting over, as they’ve been doing with all these other DC comics recently.”

I was under that impression for over 20 years, until I sat down to write this blog. I went to look up the history of Action Comics annuals on comics.org, and unless I’m totally missing something, it looks like this actually was the first ever Action Comics annual, in the entire history of the series. (Please comment and correct me if you know otherwise, and if I’m getting this completely wrong.)

Okay, anyway, the story: essentially a World’s Finest (in that it’s a Superman / Batman team-up) written by John Byrne, it’s got Batman investigating a hick southern town, that’s becoming all vampired-out. Batman needs some help, so he calls in Supes…the action culminates with Superman almost being defeated by the lead Daisy Duke-esque chick vampire, with Batman saving him at the last second by (wooden stake) skewering the chick from behind. There ya’ go.

Well, it’s a lot better than my quasi-lame write-up above. Very fun read, and does a good job with exposition, explaining through Superman’s thought balloons that he’s actually vulnerable to magic…vampire magic in this case. Art Adams detailed art was great as always, and inked by the legendary Dick Giordano.

More info / resources:

ArtAdamsArt.com is a nice fansite…

…and def try to dig up this annual at your local comic shop! If no luck, you can order it from mycomicshop.com.

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