The third and final Ambush Bug cover on Action Comics 565 (March 1985).
Superman does get the lead story in this issue, by Mort Todd and Kurt Schaffenberger, which brings back Wizard City, a fabled Kryptonian town that landed intact on Earth in Superboy’s day, long before Kandor was introduced. I talked about the Wizard City story when I covered Adventure Comics in the previous blog.
It has been discovered, and looted, by a thief who is making the most of his stolen Kryptonian tech.
Jimmy Olsen’s father, who was a young man in the original story, returns with information linking the criminal to the site.
The thief tries to kill Superman with a Kryptonian virus he found in the city, but Superman prevails, and buries Wizard City deep int he Earth’s crust, never to be seen again.
Ambush Bug has his final outing in Action, with Giffen, Fleming and Oskner finding exactly the right angle for the character. This story introduces some of the odd supporting cast, as well as the plot device of having Ambush Bug travel from hero to hero during the course of the story. Peabody, of Peabody, Dicker and Pending, opens the story with his Ambush Bug merchandising plans.
Lots of great references to old goofy stories as Ambush visits Superman. All but one of the stories referenced in this bit have already been covered in this blog!
While the Inarticulate Bug would not return, satirizing Jack Kirby would become a staple of the series.
The Uh-Oh Squad also make their first appearance in this story. The title is clearly a reference to the Suicide Squad, a team which had not had a strip since the early 60s. The logo chosen is that of The Omega Men. This always puzzled me, and did Giffen know of Ostrander’s upcoming Suicide Squad book? Or is it just coincidence?
And as he visits with Wonder Woman, Ambush Bug demonstrates that there is no lie he will not tell in order to get a hero to guest star in his strip.
And some nice meta-stuff, just to top it all off.
Such a great strip. Ambush Bug returns in a couple of months in a DC Comics Presents team-up with Superman against Kobra.