Continuing the theme of "General Marvel Books Containing Alpha Flight", today I picked up my holiday gift to myself, a big book, very big, called, "X-Men: The Characters and Their Universe" by Michael Mallory, published by Universe. It's a gigantic compendium of the X-Men, with large sections on pre-history, the animated series, movies and of course, the actual comics, going up until about the end of House of M which was 2006. The cover is padded and has a cut-out X, very fancy. It came in its own protective plastic baggie (thanks!) and it is even bigger than the Marvel Chronicle book. It's the biggest item in my Alpha Flight collection, just huge. Thankfully, the print is also oversized, as are the illustrations, so it's quite easy to read. There is an index and a timeline in the back and plenty of illustrations from the entire X-Men world.

Alpha Flight appears in reprint from the interior art of UXM#139 (Vindicator, Shaman and Snowbird), and Wild Child appears twice, once as a regular member of X-Factor in the reproduced cover art from X-Factor #132 and once as AoA Wild Child on the cover of Astonishing X-Men #1.

Alpha Flight also has its own paragraph on p226, which was very nice to mention them, but unfortunately the paragraph contains a typo (Lagkowski) and a generally unflattering description of the mutants introduced as Beta and Gamma Flight ("none of whom made a lasting impression").

Unlike the glaring omission of the 1st issue of Alpha Flight #1 from the Marvel Chronicle, the 1st issues of all three volumes of Alpha Flight are duly mentioned, as well as the X-Men/Alpha Flight miniseries.

Some other interesting features are old pictures of Stan Lee (pre-mustache!) and Jack Kirby, pencil sketches from the animated "Spider-Man and his Amazing Friends" tv show and a nice layout of X-Men figurines and mini-mates. The author really went out of his way to include much more than just the comic books.. it really is about the X-Men universe.

Did I mention how big it is? It's enormous, a full inch taller than the Marvel Chronicle, which is in itself rather gigantic. I can't even hold the book on my lap, haha, I love it. Amazon says it is: 35.1 x 28.2 x 4.1 cm or 13.8 x 11.1 x 1.6 inches and weighs 6.2 lbs or 2.8kg. Well, if you are looking for a big gift to give someone, this is very nice. Here is a big picture of it:

Marvel Vault thread:

Marvel Chronicle thread: