THE ISSUES INDEX
The Original Series
(illustration by Scott Dutton)
ONE July 1975
"ARCTIC STANDOFF": Communist foreign agents commandeer
an Arctic radar base and threaten Canada with a nuclear strike unless the
country surrenders; C.C. and his partner, Blue Fox, are sent to stop them.
First appearance of C.C., General Sun(n) & C.I.S.O. Heavy use
of "photo" backgrounds. First use of religious reference. Date
given is 1993.
Back Up: Science Fiction "JONN"begins.
"Drawing Fundamentals" (drawing lesson).
"THE BRAIN MACHINE": Blue Fox is allowed to escape
from prison in the hopes that he'll lead them to fellow enemy agents somewhere
in Montreal (including scientist Walker). 1st app. Redcoat &
Kebec. Last (minor) use of "photo" backgrounds -- there was a bit
of a faux pas, with (illustrated) General Sunn pointing to a (real) picture
of one of the conspirators...who happened to be the real-life Mayor of
Montreal (ouch!). Moody colouring by Freeman; nice Comely art.
Back Up: "JONN" continues
(only 3 pages); gorgeous George Freeman art begins on Jonn!!! Extras:
an essay on whether TV and movies can influence behavior; drawing lesson.
"THE CANADIAN CONNECTION": C.C is wounded while closing
in on arms merchant organization and is hospitalized in Sudbury; a hitman
is sent to kidnap him. First blatantly "To be continued" issue.
1st app. Mr. Gold (in silhouette); 1st app. Heather. Nice Comely
art (arguably his best, perhaps thanks to Freeman and St. Aubin's inks
and colours) and his first "good" script, with intelligent plotting, characterization,
some humour, and an effective cliff-hangar. The story is a
bit confusing, though. We come in at the supposed end of an investigation,
with the names of various villains mentioned casually, as if we're supposed
to already know who they are -- it gives the story a richness, but, for
a long time I thought it was a continuation of the takeover plot from #1
Back Up: "JONN";
Freeman art. Extras: Brief article on war time comic book hero Johnny
Canuck; two pages of "Canuck Kid" strip; drawing lesson.
**** 1st Edition #FOUR 1976 ****
I don't have this, but my understanding is it was treasury-sized
and black & white, and printed the C.C. story that would be reprinted
in the regular size #4 ("Behind the Mask"); the Catman origin (also reprinted
in #4); and the Chaos Corps story reprinted in #5. There were 300
hundred issues published as a first run, then an additional 17 a few months
later. Presumably quite rare.
FOUR July/Aug. 1979
"He's Back!" the cover proclaimed. "BEHIND THE MASK":
C.C. and Heather are kidnapped to Gold's South American hidden city.
Fine conclusion of 1st Gold story. First clear look at Gold.
1st time C.C. is shown without his mask; 1st reference to his Native Indian
heritage. Incredible George Freeman art; his first pencils on
C.C. (and not as stylized as later).
Back Up: superhero "CATMAN";
1st app. and origin (after advertising him as early as issue #1).
Nice Comely art. Beautiful colour on both stories! Extras:
Kid" strip; first fan contributed gallery; one-shot "The Beavers" comic
strip by Dave (Cerebus) Sim and Gene (many Marvel titles) Day.
"PLANET EARTH - 1994": C.C., Kebec & Redcoat are
sent to tackle neo-Nazi movement in Germany, with the leader turning out
to be a familiar foe... To be continued. C.C.'s costume
is slightly modified. 1st app. Lord West, Stardance & Earth
Patrol. C.C. origin details; 1st reference to brother Mike;
1st reference to, and appearance of, the Aliens. First new material
C.C. in 3 years (#4 was a reprint); Comely art. Series moves ahead
one year to 1994.
Back Up: "CHAOS CORPS";
super team parody. 1st Jean-Claude St. Aubin art!!!
"SEARCH": C.C. returns to Gold's South American hidden
city to rescue Lord West and finally put the kibosh on Gold. Drug-bust
subplot involving Redcoat, Kebec and Stardance in the Mediterranean begins,
continues into next issue. Last religious reference. Last Comely
art on C.C. (Freeman inks).
Back Up: "CATMAN";
2nd (and last straight appearance); off-beat technique -- mainly a text
piece with some illustrations.
SEVEN Dec./Jan. 1980
"RUSE": C.C. resigns from C.I.S.O. and goes
undercover to the Maritimes to rescue Redcoat, with the help of Stardance
& Kebec, from the drug-bust gone wrong (carried over from the previous
issue). Some nice humour in this one. 2nd George Freeman work
on C.C. and he becomes regular artist!
Back Up: "JONN"
returns; art by Freeman.
"SPACE WATCH - DEATH WATCH": Excellent two-parter begins,
taking C.C. from his brother's Alberta ranch to sabotage on a (Canadian)
space station. Clever mixing of the fantastic & the mundane,
the domestic & the dynamic. 1st app. brother Mike & Saskia;
1st app. Cmdr. Wallace. First time C.C. is shown just living his
life, away from costume. Nice colours. Series moves ahead to
1995 (though it's not stated as such for a couple of issues).
Back Up: last "JONN";
Comely returns as artist on "Jonn" to wrap things up. Extras: 2nd
fan contributed gallery (the gallery is in most issues after this).
Conclusion to very good "SPACE WATCH - DEATH WATCH":
C.C. and brother take on the bad guys in the wintery wilderness.
Again, a nice mix of elements: the rustic and the sci-fi.
Back Up: "BEYOND",
S&S begins (and the most self-contained of that series); excellent
J.C. St. Aubin art!!! With Freeman on C.C. and St. Aubin on back
up, Captain Canuck was arguably one of the visually snazziest
"MASQUERADE": In the wee hours of the morning, C.C.
finds himself, a cabbie, and a mysterious woman, on the run from bad guys
in a deserted Winnipeg office building. Another memorable one; atmospheric
and fast-paced. Winnipeg is identified as C.C's hometown.
Back Up: "BEYOND" continues.
**** SUMMER SPECIAL ****
27 page "NIGHTMARE": At the behest of Earth Patrol,
C.C. investigates a religious cult and monster sightings in Northern Ontario;
returns. The first story where C.C.'s opponents have been (vaguely)
of the "super-villain" variety. One page prelude to Alien trilogy
that will begin in #11.
Other features: 6 page Redcoat & Kebec story;
10 page "MONEY RUN" (featuring Captain Canuck). Also: a short SF
filler; and a funny "behind the scenes" one as Freeman tries to come up
with a "42 page filler" and runs into various characters (C.C., Catman,
etc.). Freeman art on all save the two shorts by St. Aubin.
4 "pro" illustrations of C.C. by Gene Day, Vern Andrusiek (who also helped
ink some of the stories), Tom Grummett, Dave ("Cerebus") Sim.
Excellent "CHARIOTS OF FIRE" begins. "OPERATION EXTERMINATION":
C.C. investigates a possible security leak, only to discover the "leak"
is a little boy being controlled by aliens -- the very aliens who had accidentally
given C.C. augmented power. Trying to get the boy and his dad to
safety, C.C. is beset by a mob of ordinary people, under the mind-control
of the aliens. Nice beginning to the series' most flamboyant epic;
eerie and exciting. Interesting idea that, since the action takes
place in Quebec city, some of the dialogue is in French (and it probably
helps to have a rudimentary grasp of the language).
Back Up: "BEYOND" continues.
"TIME FACTOR" ("CHARIOTS OF FIRE continues"): As C.I.S.O.
tries to alert other governments to the alien threat, C.C. attempts to
make contact and to reason with them (a very interesting idea, given
that most heroes in such stories immediately plot to blow up the alien
baddies). However, C.C. falls through a time portal with bad-guy
alien Nyro-Ka and they both end up in New Brunswick, circa the 11th Century.
Meanwhile, everyone else thinks C.C. is dead. Gold has a cameo. Last
Back Up: "BEYOND"
THIRTEEN Jan./Feb. 1981
"CHARIOTS OF FIRE" concludes. "EXILES": While
earth governments unite to battle the alien menace, and outfit a moon base
for an assault on the alien spaceship, C.C. -- still in the 11th Century
-- helps some Micmac Indians battle Vikingg invaders. He manages to
return to his time...on board the alien mother ship! His actions
save the day, but his only hope for survival is to leap back into the time
portal for a destination...unknown. 1st Freeman script is good, and
the historical storyline (and how it's presented) is intended as a homage
to Canadian-born comic strip legend Harold ("Prince Valiant") Foster.
Many supporting characters from the series crop up. New cover
logo. No Back Up this issue.
"FIRE-FIGHT": C.C. stumbles on a deserted contemporary
Ontario town, is "drafted" to fight a raging forest fire, and gets involved
in attempted murder and the stealing of an ancient Aztec artifact. The
development of the (surprisingly complex) story, mingling the various elements
(the eerie opening few pages --with its macabre foreshadowing -- the man-against-nature
fire-fight, and the man-against-man climax) and an actually bonafide mystery-detective
story (plus an edge-of-the-seat climax) make this arguably one of the best
of the issues! A nice job by Freeman on only his second outing as
scripter. Intended as a change of direction story, with C.C.
now in modern times (and the one weakness, as it's not altogether representative
of the body of the issues).
Back Up: "BEYOND"
continues...and is to-be-continued (eventually it was concluded in the
Beyond graphic novel published in 2016).
LAST PUBLISHED ISSUE! (until...)
Originally prepared in 1981, it finally saw print in 2004
as a special limited edition (150 copies) in black & white (well, black
& blue -- it was printed on blue paper)."THE
STYGIAN": C.C., adjusting to life in the 1980s, investigates a disappearance,
only to be led to a research project that went awry, which released an
entity that feeds on human bio-energy. Written and drawn by Freeman, it
seems to be part of the trend of some of the other issues (Summer Special,
#11-13) of injecting a greater fantasy/SF feel to the series. It starts
out well, demonstrating (as did the previous issue) Freeman's nice feel
for character minutia, and unfolding the story in a restrained, intriguing
way (as C.C. follows the trail left by lost purse) and boasts some striking
visuals (even in black & white) such as the blacked out research lab.
Ironically, it's a bit weaker when the action starts, thanks to some confusing
visuals, and a monster/villain that utters some particularly corny, "I'll
kill you all!" sort of dialogue. The story, unfortunately, is to be
continued, and was never completed. It doesn't end on a cliff hanger,
per se, (the entity merely escapes) so it's still worth a read. Whether
it will ever be published in a mass market form is unknown. The story
was FINALLY continued in the 2014 Captain Canuck Canada Day Special
- listed lower down.
Back Up: Two newspaper strips: the daily, a complete
story in six instalments, and 5 pages of the uncompleted Sunday strip (but
with a story outline detailing the rest of the plot). Both are written
by Comely and drawn by Freeman. The first page of the Sunday had previously
been printed in the First Summer Special.
Extras: an afterward by Richard Comely, detailing
the history of Captain Canuck; plus, a back cover promo for the new series
about the original character from Smash Comics, tentatively scheduled for
2005 (but ultimately cancelled before publication).
2nd summer special
Apparently some of the material for this was also finished,
but never published.
CAPTAIN CANUCK TPBs
The original series has been released in a few different
TPB versions -- most notably as a Complete Edition featuring ALL original
issues (including #15) plus some comic strips.
Second Series (The Return)
ZERO Sept. 1993
First appearance Darren Oak, Daniel Blackbird, etc. Introduction of Nathan
Oak and conspiracy theme; David Waller and Manuel "Manny" Ferrara (soon
to be Splatter). Story and art by Comely.
ONE Jan. 1994
C.C. attempts to hold a public rally denouncing the conspiracy, but the
conspiracists devise a (kind of clever) scheme to discredit him. First
appearance Splatter, in costume (revised Catman). Introduction of Nelson
McBride (Black Watch) Story and art, Richard Comely, with finishes by Leonard
Kirk (who would go on to some U.S. comics work)
Extras: back up text piece giving background on David Waller
no info at the moment.
Captain Canuck: Unholy
War(3 issue mini-series)
ONE Sept. 2005
"Heart of Gold"* Introduction of West Coast Captain Canuck/David Semple
as he tries to find proof that biker leader, Mr. Gold, is still alive.
Introduction of "new" Bluefox. 1st appearance reimagined Mr. Gold, Torchie;
reference to Nemisar. If you squint at a newspaper article in one scene,
you can see it alludes to a Captain Canuck in Ottawa, indicating this is
the same reality as the Darren Oak/Captain Canuck (introduced in Series
Two). Story Riel Langlois, art Drue Langlois (*Story titles for the West
Coast C.C. are derived from songs from popular Canadian musicians -- in
this case, Neil Young).
TWO Nov. 2005
"Misguided Angel"* Dave has his first encounter with Nemisar as he protects
a witness who can testify against Gold. Dave gets a souped up bike. 1st
appearance Nemisar. (*Cowboy Junkie's song)
THREE Jan. 2006
"If I Had a Rocket Launcher"* Dave's showdown with Mr. Gold...and a "surprise"
guest star. First appearance Tom Evans/Captain Canuck since original
series -- all three C.C.s begin to be connected as Tom Evans relates
what's happened to him since end of original series. Dave's gadgets and
utility belt tools are detailed. (*Bruce Cockburn song)
FOUR Sept. 2007
"All Good Things"* Belated fourth issue in this, originally, three-part
mini-series (and published by Hot Hail Comics as opposed to Comely Comix).
You know you've got a comic book universe just like Marvel and DC...when
you can devote a whole issue to just trying to clean up tangled continuity
-- which is basically what this issue seemms to be. The first few pages
reprint the short West Coast C.C. back-up featured in Captain Canuck:
Legacy #1, then proceeds with new material -- that basically seems
to be house cleaning. The original C.C. (Tom Evans) appears and announces
he's found a way to return to his own time/dimension, and David Semple
decides to give up being a super hero, leaving, one assumes only one C.C.
in mainstream continuity -- Darren Oak. Also includes a brief piece, set
months later, in which Dave gets beamed up by a spaceship...as a promo
for the character's up-coming adventures (presumably totally unconnected
to the Captain Canuck mythos) in the Langlois brothers' Superspace
(slatted for March 2008 release from their own Hot Hail Comics). Some funny
lines, and Drue Langlois' art shows some evolving dynamism in the action
scenes and composition, and a nice use of a real life Canadian locale (B.C.s
massive Capilano Bridge)...but more of interest for its continuity relevance
than as a story, per se, and not crucial to the rest of the Unholy War
series. Appearances by C.C. (i), C.C. (ii), Splatter, the new Blue Fox,
Torchie and Black Mack. (*Nelly Furtado song).
Captain Canuck: Legacy
(proposed 4 issue mini-series)
ONE Sept. 2006
"Premonition" Return of Darren Oak/Captain Canuck as he attempts to stop
an illegal gun smuggling operation intended to destabilize Canada and make
it ripe for Committee Three's political manipulations. 1st appearance
of Thomas Evans Senior, introduction of teenage Tom Evans, Jr.
-- the future (original) Captain Canuck. BBrief app. Splatter. Story and
art, Richard Comely (with Ron Kasman).
Back Up: 6 pages of West Coast Captain Canuck by the Langlois
Brothers; return of Torchie; 1st appearance Black Mack the Lumberjack.
Appearance Splatter. Subsequently represented in Captain Canuck: Unholy
War #4. Chapter title: "If I Had a Million Dollars" (Barenaked Ladies'
CAPTAIN CANUCK SUMMER SPECIAL
-- FIRST CANADA DAY EDITION<
One-shot special published in 2014, partly to tie-in and
promote the revival of CC as both an animated webseries and a new comic
(the latter which I haven't yet detailed). Much of the comic features text
pieces and "extras" (an intro by Richard Comely; a forward by The Governor
General -- yes, really; a behind-the-scenes photo piece on the animated
webseries; etc.) Comic/story-wise it features: "Aziz & Captain Canuck
in...Happy Canada Day!" (14 pgs written by Paul Gardner & Dean Henry
and drawn by Claude St. Aubin) -- a deliberately whimsical piece about
CC (Tom Evans) having some (deliberately) nonsensical adventures, and tying
in a bit to the new CC of the webseries and 2015 comic. AND..."True North"
(14 pgs) written by Richard Comely and drawn by George Freeman. Yes --
take a moment to savour that. And it's a straight-faced piece and a sequel
to the unresolved story from the limited-release Captain Canuck
#15. And funnily enough, with all the times CC has been re-invented and
re-imagined over the years, you can wonder if the original CC really had
any sort of true personality -- but, hoestly, I'd have to say "yes." Because
this effortlessly evokes the "true" Tom Evans: serious, unassuming, without
ego. It's great to see him again, even if for only a few pages -- nicely
rendered by Freeman. The comic is available as a free download from the
Captain Canuck site.
The Chapterhouse Comics Era
(2015-2017 -- first issue cover dated May 2015) (2017-)
Yet another re-imagining of the property -- this time a re-boot,
building upon the animated webseries version with the familiar characters
re-interpreted. So Tom Evans is Captain Canuck (here an ex-soldier rather
than ex-cop), his brother Michael is the maverick (and morally dubious)
head of their foundation -- Equilibrium, which serves as a kind of freelance
paramilitary organization (perhaps shades of Earth Patrol from the old
series) -- and with C.C.'s origin still rooted in alien interference. Kebec
and Redcoat are both women (the former an ex-army sniper, the latter Black
and British), with others in the team including the tech nerd Parminder,
and the pilot Horse, and with villain Mr Gold looking a bit like Count
Nefaria from the old Marvel Comics.
#0 (Free Comic Book Day giveaway, May 2015) - basically just a promo
for the new series, rather than an actual comic book story for free (kind
of going against the original spirit of FCBD): featues a brief excerpt
from the new #1 issue; character profiles; and a 6 pg. summary of the original
C.C.'s adventures by Ed Brisson and George Freeman.
Series 1: Issues #1-6
"Aleph" (writing: Kamal Andrasofszky; art: Andrasofszky (#1-2), Leonard
Kirk (#3-6)) tells a fast-paced tale involving aliens, mind-control, zombies
and kidnapping (with liberal flashbacks filling in the backstory) and though
fun and entertaining can feel a bit like they're just blowing through the
story so fast so you don't have time to ask whether it makes sense, with
a lot of stuff (like C.C.'s abilities, and even the nature of this reality)
ill-explained -- like Equilibrium is a private paramilitary organization
but seems to operate without oversight. And despite building to a climax...ends
with plenty of threads still dangling. This arc introduces the new iteration
of the characters, including Mr. Gold (though some had previously been
depicted in the webseries). PLUS...each of the six issues features
a 6 pg back-up focusing on the original Captain Canuck, still stranded
in 1983 (each plot serialized over two issues) -- stories then collected
and reprinted in The All-New Classic Captain Canuck #0 issue (listed below
where I detail them more).
Series 1: #7-11
"The Gauntlet" (writing: Kamal Andrasofszky; art: Leonard Kirk) continues
the groups hunt for Mr. Gold and a kidnapped woman (from the previous story).
First comic book appearance of the new, female Blue Fox (previously seen
in the webseries); introduction of Phil Wise/Northguard into the C.C. universe
and references to the PACT organization (this seems to be a slightly re-imagined
Phil/Northguard, rather than necessarily a direct continuation of the character's
1980s/1990s interpretation). No back up features. #11 was the final issue
of the new series...but simply making way for it to be re-started with
a new #1, but with the same characters/continuity/creative team.
Series 2: #1-?
ALL-NEW CLASSIC CAPTAIN CANUCK
The original Tom Evans/Captain Canuck returns after
having only had brief re-appearances in the intervening three-plus decades:
in Captain Canuck: Unholy War (which had Tom, in basically a cameo,
seeming to return to his normal time -- something this series ignores)
and the Captain Canuck Canada Day Special. And it's certainly cool
seeing George Freeman back on pencils (though his style has changed over
the years -- as do most artists) aided and abetted by Dave Ross on some
issues, and with colours by veteran colourist Laurie E. Smith (who I believe
is also Mrs. George Freeman). Now the point of this issues guide is merely
to provide a reference...BUT I guess I'll editorialize a bit after the
synopses (I mean, how can I not have some thoughts after over thirty years
#0 - (publication credits date it as Feb. 2016) - An extra-size
"prologue" collection that re-presents the six page piece (original published
in the 2015 Free Comic Book Day issue) written by Ed Brisson and drawn
by classic C.C. artist George Freeman simply recapping C.C.'s history to
get readers up to speed. PLUS...reprints all six of the back up "Classic"
Captain Canuck stories that ran in the back of Chapterhouse's 2015 re-imagined
Captain Canuck series. Three two-part tales (totalling about 12 pages per
story -- so not exactly heavy on plot): "Arctic Assault" (art: Marcus To)
Still time lost in 1982, a (bearded) C.C. answers a distress call on a
ocean oil rig only to find it being overrun by strange fish creatures.
"Armed & Dangerous" (art: Scott Hepburn) has C.C. (now sans beard)
intervening in an attempted hi-jacking of a truck carrying the CanadArm
(intended for the NASA space shuttle) and battling three would-be super
villains, The Sonic Squad. "Double Star Crossed" (art: Simon Roy (pt. 1)
Michael Walsh (pt. 2)) has C.C. kidnapped by alien mercenaries working
for the aliens from the original series' "Chariots of Fire" saga who have
tracked him through time. C.C. escapes, stealing the aliens' own time/space
transporter device...setting up the new regular series. Fairly minor in
terms of plots, with Brisson definitely going for the flamboyant (sea creatures,
super villains, aliens) but also a definite tongue-in-cheek as if he sees
it more as a lark. And the art choices are a bit odd: Freeman and To are
perfectly suited to the material...but the others have more of a cartoony/alternate
#1 - (dated Mar. 2016) - "TIME CHASE, part 1 of 4" While
C.C. experiments with the alien transporter he stole (see "Double Star
Crossed" in #0), bouncing around from prehistory to the wild west, the
alien Nyro-Ka approaches villain George Gold (in 1983) about forming an
alliance against their mutual (if future) foe, Captain Canuck. And he persuades
Gold to send Gold's super villain team, The Sonic Squad (see "Armed &
Dangerous" ~ #0 again) -- and an augmented human working for Nyro-Ka, dubbed
Criterion -- after C.C. where he has landed in the wild west (albeit in
B.C.). To be Continued...
#2 - (dated May 2016) - "TIME CHASE, part 2 of 4" - C.C.
and the villains duke it out in the 19th Century only to have their fight
interrupted by the alien mercenaries (from #0) who are angrily looking
for Nyro-Ka (it's a bit disappointing to simply set the story against a
generic American-style Wild West backdrop rather than trying to be more
distinctly Canadian, ala the original series having C.C. getting involved
with Mi'kmaq and Vikings in Newfoundland -- not that it's much more than
a backdrop for a lot of fighting). Meanwhile Nyro-Ka and Gold continue
to conspire (without trusting each other) in 1983. At the end of the issue,
C.C. and the villains go through the transporter once more...only to end
up in an alternate reality 2016 and encounter middle-aged versions of Redcoat
and Kebec! To be Continued...
#3 - (dated Oct. 2016) - "TIME CHASE, part 3 of 4" - C.C.
(and the Sonic Squad) have arrived in an apocalyptic alternate reality
2016 where they encounter a now middle-aged Kebec and Red Coat (Redcoat?).
Canada has been overrun by aliens and Mr. Gold's troops. C.C. (still with
The Sonic Squad) head back to the 1980s in hopes of preventing this future
from occurring. To be Concluded...
#4 - (dated Apr. 2017) "TIME CHASE, part 4 of 4" - C.C.
(and the Sonic Squad) arrive in 1983 to find Gold (well, two Golds, one
from 1983, one from the futuristic 1990s) & Nyro-Ka battling the alien
mercenaries Nyro-Ka betrayed. When the fighting is over, C.C. finally returns
to his 1990s (with his Gold in tow) and reunites with the younger Kebec
and Redcoat just shortly after the dramatic events in #13 of the original
#5 - Though advertised, this issue has yet to appear (as
of Sept. 2017) -- though whether that's a behind-the-scenes delay, or a
sign the series is in trouble/cancelled is unclear (looking at the publication
dates, there was six months between #3 and #4). It was promoted as focusing
on the villainous Sonic Squad -- which might seem a bit odd given this
is only the revived Captain Canuck's fifth issue (but the Sonic Squad is
writer Ed Brisson's own addition to the Captain Canuck mythology and clearly
he thinks they have potential). Though how that will work since the previous
issue ended with C.C. back in his traditional time period but the Sonic
Squad were last seen still in 1983, I guess only the story will reveal...
Okay -- I've mostly stayed away from editorializing
on this page, but I guess I'll add my thoughts on the return of the "Classic"
Captain Canuck. One funny thing I'll mention is I sort of had an idea like
this (as a fan-boy) when the series was cancelled back in the 1980s...thinking
they could get C.C. back to his time by doing a run of issues where he
becomes unstuck in time/space and bounces around from issue to issue, getting
involved in different adventures (sometimes in the past, sometimes on alien
worlds). Eventually he would learn his body had been charged with teleportation
energy (thanks to his leap through the transmatter machine). And that he
was being manipulated by good aliens (in the original comics it was implied
the aliens he fought were criminals) into acting as a kind of cosmic do-gooder.
It would eventually resolve with the aliens returning him to his time/place,
but with him agreeing they could call upon him when needed. That's neither
here nor there, but it is funny (for me) seeing how Brisson's idea was
both like, and unlike, mine.
As for the rest? I think the comic relys too much on
nostalgia (trotting out old faces, referencing old events) without defining
these characters for those who haven't read the old comics (when C.C. reunites
with middle-aged Kebec and Redcoat it could've been quite dramatic, but
feels oddly tossed off)...while those who have read the old comics might
be put-off by the big fights and whimsical goofiness (the aliens seem mostly
tongue-in-cheek) in contrast to the suspense-thriller tone of the original
series (and with its subtle, but nonetheless genuine, attempt at emotional
gravitas). It comes across as though writer Ed Brisson thought it'd be
fun to write a superhero comic -- but treats it as a lark, with lots of
fights, and aliens, and jumping through time, and goofiness (1983 Gold
doesn't seem even so much as nonplussed on meeting an alien!) -- without
developing much of it (from the 19th Century west to the apocalyptic future,
the comic just breezes through these sequences, treating them more as backdrops
than grist for plots). But C.C. and his cast weren't the most colourful
to begin with, and I worry this series bleeds them of what personality
With that said, maybe as a middle-aged man I'm not
the one to judge, with Brisson trying to write a simple, kid-friendly,
romp. It does have a certain airy charm -- but that kind of frothiness
may have trouble sustaining regular readers who might find it fun for an
issue or two but decide it's easily dropped from their pull list. Which
is maybe the test: if the series is doing well (both it and the "main"
re-imagined Captain Canuck series) then I'm just a grumpy old man and should
be ignored...if the series isn't doing that well (and the fact that there's
a delay in releasing #5, and the main series is getting re-started from
#1 again, it makes you wonder) then maybe my critiques have some value.
Who knows? It's early days, so we'll see how it evolves. There. End of
Return to The Ultimate Captain Canuck
The picture at the top of the page was done by Scott
Dutton, an Alberta-based comic artist. It mixes in images from the 2nd
Captain Canuck series, but still serves as a nice montage of Captain Canuck.
On my Links page you can find a link to Scott's web page (which features
more of his work, in comics, photography, etc., as well as a page on Assignment:
Earth -- y'know, the Star Trek episode that was intended to be a pilot
for a spin-off series featuring Robert Lansing).