‘Supergirl’ Villains of the Week: Who Are Master Jailer and Silver Banshee?

     February 22, 2016


CBS’ Supergirl is going all-in on the DC Comics villains in upcoming episodes, starting with “Truth, Justice and the American Way.” Supergirl herself (Melissa Benoist) is already dealing with her scheming supervillain uncle, but will be forced into battle against Master Jailer (Jeff Branson), a bounty hunter who’s tracking down the escaped Fort Rozz prisoners. But Kara’s day job is also made more complicated by the arrival of a second assistant, Siobhan Smythe (Italia Ricci).

If you’re unfamiliar with either of those new characters, or just want to know how they’ll fit into the Supergirl TV series, you’re in the right place. Below, you can find backgrounds on each of the DC Comics characters along with new images and video showing off just how they’ll be brought to life on the show. Plus, if you look and listen closely, you might just learn which other villains are hinted at for upcoming episodes; one of them is quite the big bad, as teased in the promos for tonight’s episode. Let’s get started!

Master Jailer


Image via DC Comics

A creation of Curt Swan and Martin Pasko, Master Jailer originally appeared in the 1979 issue of “Superman” #331. Carl Draper was a shy, overweight boy growing up in Smallville in the shadow of Superboy. Harboring deep resentment for Superboy and his similarly powered ilk, Draper eventually moved to Metropolis where he cosmetically transformed his physical appearance and became an expert in security systems, eventually building a supervillain prison known as Draper’s Island. However, when Superman took that prison into space – where the press renamed it Superman’s Island – Draper’s resentment bloomed once more. He took on the identity of Master Jailer, kidnapped Lana Lang, and created a series of traps intended to snare Superman. (That failed, of course, and Draper was imprisoned in the jail of his own design.)

It looks like Supergirl is going to take Master Jailer in quite a different direction, at least for his introduction. Judging by the early images and synopsis from this episode, this version of the DC Comics villain seems to be a bounty hunter who likes to use long chains as his weapon of choice. Though not traditionally super-powered by any means, the images showing Master Jailer going toe to toe with Supergirl in a fist fight suggests that the writers have either changed his origin to more of an extraterrestrial one, or that MJ has set a kryptonite-laden trap for Kara that weakens her powers. Hopefully this isn’t just a one and done for Master Jailer whose most interesting aspect in the comic books has always been his obsession with creating an inescapable prison worthy of holding even the strongest of superheroes.

Silver Banshee


Image via DC Comics

Created by John Byrne, this villain was originally named Siobhan McDougal, the first-born of the patriarch of a Gaelic clan whose leadership was determined through a supernatural ritual. Thanks to some scheming on the part of Siobhan’s misogynistic uncle and brother, she was interrupted during the rite and dragged away to a Hellish underworld by an entity known as “The Crone.” Siobhan made a deal with the Crone, a deal which imbued her with supernatural powers and allowed her to return to the surface world as Silver Banshee, as long as she delivered a rare occult book as payment. Siobhan’s search for this book took her to Metropolis where her eventual killing spree put her in direct conflict with Superman.

The newer iteration of Silver Banshee from The New 52 sees her reimagined as Siobhan Smythe, which is the character that Ricci will play on tonight’s episode. The alignment of this Silver Banshee is a little murkier since she actually befriends Supergirl and even defends her when the need arises. Smythe doesn’t terrorize citizens as Silver Banshee until she’s forced to transform when her late father, the Black Banshee, attacks, prompting her to use her superpowers: superhuman strength, speed, agility, and endurance, in addition to her signature hypersonic wails. Could this character end up being a super-ally to Supergirl?

Get a behind the scenes look at Ricci as Silver Banshee in tonight’s episode of Supergirl (via ET):


Image via Warner Bros.

And here are a few sneak peeks at “Truth, Justice and the American Way”:

Supergirl does battle with the deadly Master Jailer (Jeff Branson), who is hunting and executing escaped Fort Rozz prisoners. Also, Cat hires a second assistant, Siobhan Smythe (Italia Ricci), who immediately tries to one-up Kara, and Kara and James disagree over the DEO’s methods, on Supergirl, Monday, Feb. 22 at 8/7c.


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS


Image via CBS

For more on Supergirl, be sure to check out some of our recent coverage below: