The return of Alpha Flight

Artist Dale Eaglesham talks about the big return of Marvel’s Canadian super hero team, Alpha Flight, at his rural home in Vankleek Hill, Ontario. You can watch the video at this link: Homegrown superheroes take flight. (I wanted to feature the clip, but the Ottawa Citizen site is lame. It uses the silly interface a bunch of newspaper sites have adopted which doesn’t make the video embed code discoverable that would allow me to include it here – nor does it anchor link to the specific piece of content I want from the package. So instead you get this boring photo.)

Enough griping about a dying medium.

Can our heroes save Canada…from itself? Dale, Greg Pak and Fred Van Lente spin an 8-issue tale for fans of the original franchise who’ve been chomping at the bit for the return of the Flight.

Alpha Flight was the second #1 issue I ever purchased – the first being New Mutants. I loved John Byrne‘s art and followed the book religiously, but I will admit I didn’t totally get it at the time. I was 10 years old and wanted a straight-forward team book, so the whole fractured family thing was lost on me at first. I kept hoping for a big team battle at some point and then suddenly James Hudson is killed and that confused me further.

Until about issue 20 or so when I went back one day and read the entire run again – and loved it!

Once Byrne left, however, the book pretty much lost its focus. For some reason, I very clearly remember issues 51 with Jim Lee on pencils and whole bunch of new characters. I think Bill Mantlo was writer. It featured a strange cast of characters. The book no longer felt like Alpha Flight, and that’s about where I lost interest even though I kept picking up the issues for another couple of years.

But it’s back. We’ll see how it this one can recapture the magic of the original.

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