Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Turnaround Tuesday!

I started this one a few weeks back for St. Patty's Day, but various things got in the way. It's Banshee!


Banshee is one of the characters from the 'second wave' of X-Men which made its debut in 1974's "Giant Size X-Men" #1. (This group also famously included Wolverine, Storm, Nightcrawler and others) Banshee had made his debut in "X-Men" years earlier, as a hero forced into villainy by that dastardly Magneto.

He hung around for the first year or so of the 'new' X-men, but since then more or less remained in the background, or at least among the second tier of X-men.


There's a fine line when designing vaguely nationalistic heroes. You can get either the 'clone of Captain America' look (see Captain Canuck, Germany's Vormund or Russia's Red Guardian) or you get the 'stereotype of the country as a costume' look (see Saudi Arabia's Arabian Knight, Spain's Aguila or -oy- Ireland's Shamrock). I think that the later is much easier to get wrong. Just look at them! Shamrock's name is even Molly Fitzgerald! Why not just name her Leprechaun O'Guiness?

Banshee somehow managed to stay out of that stereotyped caricature of a country 'zone'. I think it's because his name implies a connection with Ireland, without any implicit 'banshee' imagery, and his costume, in its green and yellow color scheme, says 'Ireland' without knocking us over the head with explicit flag imagery. He also tended to have subtle character traits that said 'Irish': curly, red hair, longer sideburns and a pipe. He walks on that tightrope, but I think it works.

The costume itself is great too. You've got a streamlined costume with just a collar for distinction; he's a flier and needs to stay unencumbered. And those wings. Man, I remember loving those crazy wings ever since I saw him in a comic back in the early '90's.

Great costume. I think I did a decent job here. Join me tomorrow for more art goodness!


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