Recently, Marvel Studios’ Kevin Feige made a statement about the company’s commitment to diversity in the MCU’s Phase 4 and beyond. We know that movies like Black Widow and The Eternals are part of that plan. But now that the Disney/Fox merger is complete, they have access to one of their most diverse super teams ever, who have yet to grace the big screen. We’re taking about Canada’s very own Alpha Flight.
The team has turned into a bit of a punchline in the past several years, for no other reason than people think it’s funny that they’re Canadian. Probably the same people who made fun of the West Coast Avengers back in the day too. Once upon a time, folks simply couldn’t wrap their brains around superheroes living outside of New York City. But Alpha Flight doesn’t deserve its modern reputation as a joke, and the MCU can finally change that perception by bringing the group to the big screen.
Who Are Alpha Flight, And Why Should They Get A Movie?
Created by writer/artist John Byrne, Alpha Flight were superheroes who worked for Department H, a branch of Canada’s Department of National Defense. Making their debut 1979’s Uncanny X-Men #120, they were originally used to flesh out Wolverine’s backstory: they were his original teammates before he joined the X-Men. Among those heroes were Aurora and her brother Northstar, Sasquatch, Puck, Shaman, Snowbird, Vindicator, and several others.
A few years later, Alpha Flight received their own title, a series that lasted 11 years and 130 issues. In its heyday, it was Marvel’s second biggest selling ongoing title, right under Uncanny X-Men. For a time, they outsold the Avengers, Batman, and a lot of other iconic names. That’s not something that either the Guardians of the Galaxy or The Eternals comic book series could ever claim. Comic book sales figures aside, brand recognition has never stopped Kevin Feige from seeing any Marvel characters’ innate movie potential. And Alpha Flight has tons.
The Diverse Team
Created in an era when most superheroes were white males, Alpha Flight was a breath of fresh air. Included among their most famous lineup were two heroes Shaman and Talisman who belonged to Canada’s First Nations. Snowbird was an Inuit goddess (and possibly an Eternal?); while Northstar was a gay man; Puck was a little person; and Sasquatch was Polish/Jewish. Early in the team’s run, their leader was a straight white dude, but he died early on, and his wife took over his role as Vindicator. If the MCU really wants to commit to diversity in Phase 4, Alpha Flight would help spotlight a lot of overlooked actors.
Introduce Mutants To The MCU, Starting With Wolverine
We all know that mutants and the X-Men are coming to the MCU at some point. Sure, it might be a few years away, but it’s going to happen. And while everyone is waiting for that inevitable X-Men reboot, it’s possible that Kevin Feige will use Alpha Flight as a totally left field and unexpected way to bring mutants into the MCU. And since Wolverine was an early member of the team, why not include him too? We’ve suggested before that a Weapon X style Wolverine film could be used to introduce Logan into the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but introducing him as a member of Alpha Flight would be just as cool. And having Logan on the team can only help the movie’s box office.
The Captain Marvel Connection
In recent years, Alpha Flight has been rebranded as an organization protecting Earth from alien threats, and their lead is none other than Captain Marvel. While we don’t think Carol Danvers should specifically be Alpha Flight’s field leader in the big screen version, it would be cool to see the MCU version of the team play up their connection to Carol. Maybe she could be the team’s Nick Fury type, or their Avengers liaison? The sky is the limit.
Images: Marvel Comics