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AlphaFlight.net - A Reason For Alpha Flight
  • A Reason For Alpha Flight

    There has been plenty of talk on this site lately (actually, for the last few years) that revolves around various discussions about what reason can we come up with for having an Alpha Flight team again, a reason that would be good enough to (a) cause Marvel to believe it would sell as a series, and (b) make sense in that Marvel seems to feel that previous AFs have lost readers due to something new being needed.

    Many people here have suggested ideas. Some new ideas, some not-so-new.

    Many of us believed that John Byrne had it right, or did it best, when it comes to AF. So, many times suggestions came up in regards to how JB wrote AF in the beginning, how they were a team made up of individuals who did not always get along, and showing that individual stories could be told in a team book.

    There has also been talk about how AF needs to interact with the Marvel U on a regular basis, to attract attention and fans and keep them relevant.

    And most people here agree that one of the things that makes AF Alpha Flight-y is that they are Canadians as opposed to Americans (who seem to have the vast majority of the superheroes).

    Well, here is my idea...

    Take John Byrne's original idea. Modernize it, and you have got an AF that is bold, exciting, and will sell.

    By this, I mean that Alpha Flight should be a group of Canadian superheroes, working for the Canadian government, with two mandates; (a) protection of Canada from super-powered baddies, and (b) to bring in all of the Canadian government employees with super-powers who are working illegally in America. In other words, they have a mandate to bring back to Canada such people as Northstar, Aurora, and Wolverine, at any and all costs.

    This, as you can imagine, means that AF will be a superhero team based in Canada, who, besides fighting bad guys and gals within their own borders, will quite often be throwing-down with recognizable superheroes and super-teams in the US of A. They may be good guys, but when they get a sniff of one of their own who have left to fight evil in the US, they spring into cross-border-action and try their damnest to capture and retrieve said persons.

    Welcome to a great many great battles with superheroes! Welcome to a great many guest appearances in other titles! Welcome to sales!

    Welcome back, Alpha Flight?
    This article was originally published in forum thread: A Reason For Alpha Flight started by Flightpath07 View original post
    Comments 109 Comments
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      Alpha Rider,

      I'd put Puck as 'badass normal' (do not look that up on TV Tropes; you can check out any time you like, but you can never leave...), but otherwise, nice summary.
      Your other points were made, but nobody's going to tell you that, because none of us is that rude.

      'patritizum'? I'm not... familiar with that term.

      - Le Messor
      "Have you lived in this village all your life?"
      "No, not yet."

    1. Alpha Rider's Avatar
      Alpha Rider -
      'patritizum'? I'm not... familiar with that term. Typing and answering a 4yearolds "Why" questions at the same time. Or just bad spelling/ grammer. What I ment to say was Overly Patriotic.
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      Oh.

      Why?
    1. Alpha Rider's Avatar
      Alpha Rider -
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      Now you're really on Alpha Waves...
    1. kinghorsey's Avatar
      kinghorsey -
      I believe there has to be some degree of reinvention, as well. Some of the new characters that were introduced in and for Alpha Flight were just awful.

      The key will be a decisive direction and good writing. Unfortunately, without disrespecting any writer that's been on board with the book, we haven't really had that in a long time. Problem is I don't know if anyone really knows what to do with Alpha Flight.

      I think for starters you can pretty much forget about having either one of the McKenzies in any kind of active role in the team - other than mentor, maybe.

      I have to say, though, I liked the design/concept behind the Ultimate X-Men Snowbird over Byrne's original. Somehow the idea of an Inuit demi-goddess that looks like a poster child for Norwegian repopulation campaigns never sat right with me (i.e. white and very very blonde).
    1. cmdrkoenig67's Avatar
      cmdrkoenig67 -
      Julia Carpenter (formerly known as Arachne) is now apparently back in the States...

      Spoliers:
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      .
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      After the Spider-Man event: The Grim Hunt, Julia somehow inherited the late Madame Web's abilities and has also taken her name...She's the new Madame Web.

      Dana
    1. -K-M-'s Avatar
      -K-M- -
      Well this is old news, but some may not have heard yet.




      SPOILER




      USAgent during Seige had his arm and leg cut off by Nuke using Odin's spear and is now bound to a wheelchair.




      END SPOILER
    1. cmdrkoenig67's Avatar
      cmdrkoenig67 -
      Quote Originally Posted by -K-M- View Post
      Well this is old news, but some may not have heard yet.




      SPOILER




      USAgent during Seige had his arm and leg cut off by Nuke using Odin's spear and is now bound to a wheelchair.




      END SPOILER
      Yeah, I had heard he was maimed somehow, but I didn't know the specifics of his injuries.

      They'll probably stick a cybernetic arm and leg on him at some point...Who doesn't have cybernetic parts these days?...LOL! Ugh!

      Dana
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      Quote Originally Posted by kinghorsey View Post
      I think for starters you can pretty much forget about having either one of the McKenzies in any kind of active role in the team - other than mentor, maybe.
      It's spelled 'McKenzie', but I take it it's pronounced 'Hudson'?

      - Le Messor
      "He looks like a horse in a man costume!"
      ~ Bernard Black
    1. Flightpath07's Avatar
      Flightpath07 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Le Messor View Post
      I think a good way to start the new book is kind of how it started in the first place - in other series. Give them enough guest appearances to intrigue the readers of those series; and write them in a way that portrays them as interesting and sympathetic. (Note to prospective writers: the 'sym' part of that last word is very important.)

      Get readers used to them before the series starts, rather than just throwing it out there and hoping people notice.

      - Le Messor
      "Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted, and the trouble is I donít know which half."
      ~ John Wanamaker
      Completely agree with this. It is, to one varying degree or another, what i was suggesting earlier, after all.

      Oh, by the way, it is nice to be back! Been offlin,e without a pc, for the last three months or so. Missed you all terribly; found out you cannot post to this site from a Blackberry.
      So...have I missed much in the time I have been gone?

      Sorry, but I gotta put these lyrics here, as being without you all for these past months has nearly driven me around the bend!

      Alice Cooper - The Quiet Room

      The California air
      Your nightgown on the stairs
      I remember every night
      Scenes from home in the Quiet Room

      How long have I been gone
      Did winter kill the lawn
      And all those polaroids you sent
      Are on the wall in the Quiet Room

      They've got this place
      Where they've been keeping me
      Where I can't hurt myself
      I can't get my wrists to bleed
      Just don't know why
      Suicide appeals to me

      The Quiet Room
      Is sterilized and white
      It's like a tomb
      With just a moth stained naked light

      Plastic forks and spoons
      No laces in my shoes
      They all know what I tried to do
      Outside the Quiet Room

      This quiet place
      It ain't so new to me
      It's haunted atmosphere
      Has heard so many scream
      My home from home
      My twilight zone
      My strangest dream

      My confidant
      I have confessed my life
      The Quiet Room
      Knows more about me than my wife

      They've got this place
      Where they've been keeping me
      Where I can't hurt myself
      I just can't
      I just can't get these damn wrists to bleed

      A mattress on the floor
      No handles on the door
      I really need nothing more
      I'm alone
    1. Flightpath07's Avatar
      Flightpath07 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Le Messor View Post
      If the new Heroic Age does what it sounds like it's meant to do, yes. It'll solve one of the problems I've had with a lot (but not all, not really even most) of comics lately - that the heroes aren't.
      Comics, ideally, for me, should be a battle of good vs. evil; these days, a lot are evil vs. slightly less evil. I'm tired of being expected to sympathise with heroes I can't tell apart from villains. I'm tired of having to hold my 'heroes' to lower standards than I do real people - I should be able to hold them much, much higher.
      The Heroic Age should, let's hope, solve that.

      Will it solve the 'they never get the chance to be people problem'? Maybe, maybe not. There's nothing in the premise to say it should, but wouldn't it be cool if it did?
      That might be a good time for a new Alpha Flight series.

      - Le Messor
      Hartley's Second Law: Never sleep with anyone crazier than yourself.
      So, as somebody who has been out of the loop for a bit - how is this new Age stacking up so far?
    1. Flightpath07's Avatar
      Flightpath07 -
      Quote Originally Posted by kinghorsey View Post
      I believe there has to be some degree of reinvention, as well. Some of the new characters that were introduced in and for Alpha Flight were just awful.

      The key will be a decisive direction and good writing. Unfortunately, without disrespecting any writer that's been on board with the book, we haven't really had that in a long time. Problem is I don't know if anyone really knows what to do with Alpha Flight.

      I think for starters you can pretty much forget about having either one of the McKenzies in any kind of active role in the team - other than mentor, maybe.

      I have to say, though, I liked the design/concept behind the Ultimate X-Men Snowbird over Byrne's original. Somehow the idea of an Inuit demi-goddess that looks like a poster child for Norwegian repopulation campaigns never sat right with me (i.e. white and very very blonde).
      I both agree and disagree.

      Some of the characters introduced into Alpha Flight were just not rigth for the book - as characters, they were fine, just not for Alpha Flight, or that version of Alpha Flight. There are no bad characters, just bad writers.

      Decisive direction and good writing - agreed. Somebody who understands comics in general, somebody who understands how to write intriguing and 'real' characters, and somebody who is a bit of a visionary (no, not somebody who bringsa back Vision and Scarlet Witch either, lol); that is what AF needs.

      As has already been said here, i think the most imprtant thing for a re-launch would have to be guest appearances. The team has to be imposing, mysterious, heroic, and leave people wanting more. Thta, IMHO, is far more important than whether the team members are original members or not. When Byrnbe first started this crazy trip we call Alpha Flight, how many of the members were established heroes with back stories?

      Right - none.

      He introduced them in X-men appearances, and the people loved them. They didn't know who they were, but they desperately wanted to. And that is the sort fo writing we need again. Not Byrne, but somebody who can do that in the modern age.
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      Quote Originally Posted by Flightpath07 View Post
      So, as somebody who has been out of the loop for a bit - how is this new Age stacking up so far?
      I don't think we've discussed it much.
      Personally? Disappointed.
      I was hoping to going back to hopeful, heroic stories with bright colours (I know those aren't the look now, but they really help me to enjoy a comic, it turns out, whatever Scott McCloud says)m focus on character (notably, people with secret identies - lives outside of being superheroes, so I have something to identify with); but I haven't seen much that isn't more of the same hard sci-fi 'tude that's been leaving me cold for a while now. One of the new relaunches was Secret Avengers, which is dark stuff again; as was Avengers Academy.
      Not saying that stuff doesn't exist. Spider-Man springs to a wall, sticks there for a while, then springs to mind.

      Been enjoying all one issues so far of Young Allies, but it needs to get its head out of 00s' fashion.

      BTW... I didn't read the lyrics you posted. Why? Alice is my second-favourite artist (after Queen), and I know that song well. Love it.
      But it's disturbing that you'd post it...

      - Mik
      "He that speaks ill of the Mare will buy her."
      ~ Benjamin Franklin
    1. Flightpath07's Avatar
      Flightpath07 -
      Mik, it would have been disturbing if I had SANG it...
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      How do I know you didn't?
      Come to think of it, how do I know you're not Mel Torm
      ť?

      - Le Messor
      "He was a tall as a six foot three inch tree."
    1. Flightpath07's Avatar
      Flightpath07 -
      Previous evidence suggests that if I had sang it, my mutant power to butcher good songs would have materialized and Professor X would have shown up on my door and had Wolverine gut me. As my guts are currently still intact, I didn't sing it.
    1. Le Messor's Avatar
      Le Messor -
      Re-read those lyrics - wouldn't have happened this time.

      - LM
      "He who believes the past cannot be changed has not yet written his memoirs."
    1. Duane V's Avatar
      Duane V -
      Quote Originally Posted by Raja View Post
      That is an extremely sensible approach. One that would work....but the problem comes down to this; Who would buy a superhero book about Canadians? Who would care about it? In the mind of Marvel as a company, they likely assume Alpha Flight has no market. People have to be encouraged to care about these characters, as you said, by exposure to them, but IMO it needs to be about the individual characters first, so people don't go "Oh that Canadian team, who cares?" The nationality in most cases should come later. It shouldn't matter at all, but it does.

      People bought John Byrne's version. I say, bring him back. He knows the characters intimately, he's known for (ahem) retro - fitting Classic characters from both Marvel and DC, and he'd do a great job, simply because he loves the Marvel Universe. I know for a fact that the problem isn't the characters, it's a simple matter of uninspired writing. The writer needs to love the characters as much as the fans at this website. That should be the Only pre requisite for handling the characters..
    1. cmdrkoenig67's Avatar
      cmdrkoenig67 -
      If loving the characters is a prerequisite for doing the book, then there's the first problem....John Byrne does not love Alpha Flight.