• Review - What The -- ?! #6

    What The -- ?! #6Issue: What The --?! #6
    Writer: various
    Artist: various
    Date Published: January 1989
    Alpha Appearance: Shaman, Sasquatch, and Vindicator (insert funny versions of their names here) - cover only
    Period in Alpha Flight's history: irrelevant; parody

    An old Marvel humour anthology:
    A take on Acts Of Vengeance, with very unsual villains facing Marvel characters - namely, DC villains.
    The Origin of The Pulveriser: Exactly what it says on the tin.
    Man-Thang vs. Swamp Thang: who made who? Who's back in black? Who shook me all night long?


    I didn't buy this at the time it came out. I flipped through it in the shop and figured out that AF were only on the cover, which I'd already seen. I only got it now because somebody gave it to me, having picked it up as part of a $15 grab bag at a book fair.

    This is a fairly standard issue of the series. Despite being an anthology, the stories are done in a similar style - chaotic, with a lot going on and the characters all drawn warts 'n' all. This isn't always to my taste in comics (though it's reminiscent of Zucker-Abrams-Zucker style, which I love - go figger), and I'm a little put off by it. I really don't know why; I think it's the feeling of griminess that hangs over it all.
    The stories definitely have their moments, some of which I've thought are worth repeating (namely, the opening Radar gag and the next-page follow-up). It's funny, and cool, and I like the take on purple prose in the Man-Thing parody.

    Da Juice :

    By now, those in the know are wondering why I haven't brought up one salient fact: the first story (with the Radar gag) was by John Byrne.
    And this gets to the meat of why I can't rate this for Alpha Flightness, and yet the reason I'm writing this review:

    John Byrne drew that cover.
    Not only is it a John Byrne Alpha Flight image, but I believe it's the only official image of Heather in the Vindicator costume he's ever done.

    So yeah.
    Okay, I wish it hadn't been a caricature, but really, a Byrne AF image alone is worth the cover price. At least when that cover price is nothing.
    on its own:
    Good, with funny moments, but not the greatest thing I've ever read.

    For Alpha Flightness: