Not much is known about our mysterious neighbors to the north
Without Canada, we wouldn’t have a Superman. Most likely. Because, sans Toronto, Joe Shuster would’ve been born in an unbearably cold confluence of Lake Ontario and the North Atlan…listen, neither renowned historical fantasist Harry Turtledove or the random seismologist I emailed two minutes ago have responded to my queries. But I’m thinking no Superman without Canada. Certainly no Wolverine or Alpha Flight. Actually, we’d be without a lot of great comics well beyond the superheroes. The place boasts some terrific writers and artists with a wide range of sensibilities. We don’t know what it is and we’d be foolish to try and distill it in one article. The syrup, possibly?
I don’t have any science contacts for that one.
Anyways, we’ve been tipped to a fantastic Indiegogo campaign for a book called True Patriot. The mission? To introduce more great Canadian superheroes into the world. The incentives? Sketches! Original art! Portfolio reviews! Coffee with Ramon Perez! And, of course, high adventure!
Here’s J. Torres with the pitch:
So, who’s involved?
Adrian Alphona (Runaways), Andy B. (Kill Shakespeare), J. Bone (Super Friends), Jack Briglio (Scooby Doo), Scott Chantler (Two Generals), Tom Fowler (Hulk: Season One), Agnes Garbowska (Girl Comics), Faith Erin Hicks (Adventure Time), Tim Levins (Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes), Ramon Perez (A Tale of Sand), Ron Salas (28 Days Later), Jay Stephens (Secret Saturdays), J. Torres (Teen Titans Go), Howard Wong (After the Cape).
Sweet roster, right? We spoke to some of those creators, including Tom Fowler (Hulk: Season One, Mysterius the Unfathomable), Howard Wong (After the Cape, Grunts), J. Bone (DC Retoractive: Wonder Woman – The 70s; inker, Batman/The Spirit) and Scott Chantler (Two Generals, Three Thieves).
iFanboy: Why Canada?
Tom Fowler: Because we’re Canadian. that’s probably a flip answer, but i think growing up to be a cartoonist in Canada you learn pretty quickly that, while there is certainly a staggering amount of talent here, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of our voice making it to the page. And even less characters. this just seemed like a good place to start getting some of that out.
Howard Wong: Being Canadian it only made sense to do a story in a place where I grew up. The rich diverse Canadian culture provides so many story avenues, which you can see from the True Patriot story line up.
Jay Bone: Why Canada? Because Canada is the second largest Country by total area in the whole WORLD. We really ought to know more about Canada’s superhero community. Sure, we’ve got Captain Canuck, Nelvana of the Northern Lights, Alpha Flight and Wolverine! But over the years the U.S.A. (aka “Canada’s Underpants”) has, shall we say, “borrowed” Wolverine for so long that I think most people have forgotten his wintery birthplace; the frozen tundra that made him the man every single comic book fan knows and loves.
But we, Canada (aka “America’s tuque”) are so much more than “Wolverine”. We’ve got lots of other really great heroes and those great heroes are what TRUE PATRIOT is all about.
iF: We have never actually been to Canada (yet). Will we understand what’s going on?
Scott Chantler: Just remember that a kilometre is about two-thirds of a mile, a litre is about a quarter-gallon, and that our taxes are paid in the form of eggs, chickens, and other livestock, which are collected directly by our boy King, who travels door-to-door on the 36th day of every Moontember.
Howard Wong: I can’t imagine anyone having a problem understanding any of the stories. Canada’s diversity comes from embracing a multicultural society. True Patriot’s stories are very universal in that sense.
I’m doing a story with Adrian Alphona (Runaways) about Ogopogo (cryptid serpent lake monster) giving a boy a lesson about the impacts that his actions cause on those he’s around, through a fun filled wacky adventure that will change him in more ways than one! We’ll have homages embedded for fellow Canadians that we hope will appreciate, but won’t take away from the story anyone from anywhere can enjoy. You can see some of Adrian’s sketches as we were developing the story at indiegogo.com/truepatriot.
Tom Fowler: We may be exercising our canadian voice, but ultimately good stories are good stories, adventure is adventure, and fun is fun. you’re not going to get lost anywhere, you’ll just get a chance to see things from a slightly different (northerly?) perspective.
Jay Bone: Canadians are well know for being incredibly friendly and extremely polite. Do not worry about being an American and failing to understand the Canadianess of this book. We, as polite members of civilized society, will speak very slowly. And other than our inclination for the colloquial “eh” I think our stories will speak to the universal truths of heroes and heroic deeds.
iF: How much do we want this book? What wonders await within?
Scott Chantler: For one thing, it will be my first-ever superhero story. I’d say that’s as rare as Halley’s Comet, but Halley’s Comet has happened before.
Jay Bone: Other than the list of proven, quality talent involved in the project I can only speak for myself when it comes to the wonders of the stories within! I can assure you all will be of the finest sort.
My own, titled “The Golden Owl vs. Bigfoot” promises a rough and tumble forest battle between Canada’s owl powered hero of the golden cowl and a Bigfoot! I think it’s enough the Golden Owl is involved but when you add the mythical (and entirely believably real) BIGFOOT you have a tale not to be missed. Naturally the legend of Bigfoot (aka Sasquatch, and in colder climes, the Yeti) is world renowned. Those still concerned that they may not “understand” the story, calm your troubled brow – “The Golden Owl vs. Bigfoot” is a big ol’ fight scene just like in the comic books, eh.
Howard Wong: This is the first time all these creators are teaming up in one anthology, so that’s kind of special. Being an all ages superhero anthology just makes it great for anyone. Be it a comic book reader, or those that are not, there’s stories in True Patriot for someone to enjoy. It also makes for a great stocking suffer too, just saying.
The take on the superhero genre range from capes to cryptids, so you can only imagine the variety of stories that we have. Though, why imagine when you can per-order a copy at indiegogo.com/truepatriot?
Tom Fowler: I don’t think i can describe it better than J when he elevator pitched a bunch of the stories on twitter the other day:
Superhero Girl fans! An all-new SHG comic by Faith Erin Hicks appears in @TruePatriotCmx!
Dominion Jack by Jack Briglio and Ron Salass has powers like Animal Man… but with people!
Red Ensign, Scott Chantler WWII masked hero, also makes his debut in @TruePatriotCmx!
Heard about Andy B.’s Thunderbirch? Thor as a girl with Haida instead of Norse mythology!
Anyone remember Family Dynamic? Did you know that Tim Levins and I are bringing them back in @TruePatriotCmx?
The legend of Ogopogo is reinterpreted by Howard Wong and Adrian Alphona for @TruePatriotCmx!
The Golden Owl by J. Bone fights a Sasquatch in the pages of @TruePatriotCmx!
As for my own story with j, i think we’re hoping to capture something between calvin and hobbes and shazam.
how’s that sound, internet?!
Sounds real good!
Now, fund it!