Saturday, March 6, 2010

A "Golden Age" Olympic moment with the irrepressible Puck!


Groan… How’s it going, eh?

Shhhh! Don’t answer so loud. Why is everything is so very, very loud? Oh yeah, my hangover, eh? The last week of partying in Olympic village and on the streets of Vancouver is pretty much a blur to me and my aching head and ears are a wee bit sensitive today.

Forget those other Alpha Flight second stringers you’ve been reading all week. Despite my blurry vision and feeling like my skull has been run over by a three-man luge, you’re hanging with the real deal now. The one and only Eugene Milton Judd, alias Puck (Alpha Flight), Alpha Flight’s number one ladies man and adventurer!


Oooooh! Shouldn't have done that cartwheel for effect. My stomach’s still delicate from being pumped out by paramedics after the beer chugging contest with those university kids... who, in retrospect, looked suspiciously like disguised members of Omega Flight.


Jeese, my zombified head is feels like it’s been in a blender. I suspect I feel a lot like these Russian guys in the electric pinballs from the closing ceremony.


I should know better by now - never mix Glen Breton Rare 15 year single malt with Niagara Ice Wine with pitchers of lager and Bloody Caesars for an entire week.

Take my advice. If anyone ever offers you free refills of a drink they call a "Wolverine". You say, "No" and back away slowly.

Sore as I am, I can say this was one Hell of a Winter Games. And I should now, I’ve been to pretty much all of them since they officially began in 1924.


Let’s see, what can I remember? Me and my Alpha Flight buddies were in special Box seats watching the game. Actually, we were sitting IN Box, who had reshaped his robot body into bleachers hovering near the scoreboard.

I was head cheerleader despite already being wiped out from partying with the women’s hockey team. Those young women are harder to stop than Deadly Earnest.


Who could forget Northstar acting all pissy when his Olympic credentials and passes were rescinded after he interrupted the Joni Mitchell aerial ballet in the opening dancer to give the guy tips on proper flying technique? I think Jean-Paul was just trying to pick up myself. So he was forced to watch it on big screens in Robson Square with like, a billion other people.


Jean-Paul and I did get into it with some rowdy snowboarders in the chalet. But we made sure those loudmouths had finished competing before we beat the crap out of them for dissing the true north strong and free. You'd think the Danes had been made fun of enough themselves to know better.


Oh yeah. Drunk as I was I can still remember, “He shoots, he scores!” to quote my old buddy, Foster Hewitt.

http://assets.nydailynews.com/img/2010/03/05/alg_crosby_celebrates.jpg

It’s amazing how a single moment like a game winning, gold medal, overtime goal can turn a player like Sidney Crosby from the under-performing scapegoat of the Olympic Men’s Hockey team into a hero of the games. Ask Paul Henderson about how that works. The last time I was this excited was after his game-winning goal in game eight of the 1972 Summit Series. He’s been dining out on that for decades. In fact, I’ve treated the guy to a few dinners myself. And Crosby? The kid’s only 22 and he’s got a Stanley Cup, a World Junior Championship silver and gold and now an Olympic gold medal. It’s all downhill from here, kid. Ask Paul.

Hmmm. These bruises ring a bell. Now it’ s coming back to me. I remember being pretty stoked when Scott Niedermayer asked me to join the team’s “quiet, family” celebrations – which turned out to be a game of shinny. Did they put me in goal due to my incredible reflexes? Nooooo, they needed a puck and I’m a sucker for punishment.


The next thing I know I found myself in a horrible, Canadian nightmare -- a puck's eye view of a tabletop hockey game being played by a half-asleep, bored looking Avril Lavigne, courier du bois and Michael Bublé. It must have been some bad poutine. I woke in a cold sweat, screaming. Then Nickelback arrived to make it all better.


Now I know how my nephew, Peter Puck must have felt.


While we’re into complete honesty here, I have to admit that I the one who smuggled in beer and stogies to the Women’s Hockey team for their post victory, on-ice celebration. My bad, eh?


Of course, the women ended up in the same place I always seem to end up after a hockey game -- drunk and passed out at center ice until the zamboni nudges me awake.


http://media.comicvine.com/uploads/0/376/80434-158438-puck_thumb.jpgWhat can I say? I’m a sucker for athletic ladies who aren’t so lady-like. Yes, yes, I know it's wrong in terms of sportsmanship and international unity but it’s also sooo right in terms of hanging out with the toughest, sassiest gals at the Games.

The party ended some time around the time I demonstrated my bullfighting skills for Jennifer Botterill and Jayna Hefford on this huge, floating moose, which turned out to be a balloon from the closing ceremonies.


Huh, no wonder that thing charged so slowly.

At least Cheryl Bernard gave my attempt to impress a thumbs up. Bernard is single-handedly responsible for making curling sexy in the minds of American males (and sometimes their wives) across the continent. My vote for favourite phrase coined so far for Cheryl has to "Couglar".

The fact that everyone is raising up a 43 year-old curler as their favourite MILF-Cougar athlete is kinda good and bad, eh? It's nice to see a broader range of what can be considered sexy, and yet we all know objectifying someone is bad. That's why all good old Eugene's jpg's of Cheryl are not on display as his laptop wallpaper, but rather lie safely tucked away in a file marked "Dull Accounting Docs" so as not to insult the ladies, nor arouse their suspicion.


Sadly Cheryl, finding a comic book curling story or cover is next to impossible. this amalgamation of curling, broomball and hockey is the best I could do.


So we'll just have to hold your sexy curling brethren in our maple syrup drenched, comic book loving hearts here at Comicanuck.

So here’s the deal.

I know Sasquatch and Shaman are all excited over those old Batman Olympic comics but this diminutive dynamo is all about the hockey, you now? Besides, Sasquatch ran off trying to do unspeakable things to a giant, inflatable beaver with Shaman running after him. So they could be gone for a while, eh?


Today, we’re going to celebrate Canada’s most beloved sport (along with lacrosse and pretending the cold doesn’t affect us in front of Americans) – HOCKEY!
























It seems like mostly gag comics have hockey covers. Makes sense. Adventure comics focus more on the danger elements whereas gag books are always looking at daily life to give somehting for reader's to relate to in the physical humour. Readers have to understand what is normal to know how the characters are screwing things up.


Though stories of hockey heroes have appeared in comic books, few stars achieved cover status except for the modern masters the Great One Wayne Gretzky and "Super Mario" Lemieux.


Tough guy superstar Gordie Howe go the star treatment as well. They say a Gordie Howe Hat Trick, rather than being three goals, was one goal, one assist and one fight! The company that put out these sports bios than decided to combine the art and stories from all three books into one "Hockey Masters" collection.


When most adventure comics think of hockey at all, the focus seems to be more on the weapon possibilities of the lumber.


But I have to give the Brits the biggest score for not quite "getting" how hockey works. Of course, that's the very reason I am dying to read these particular yarns from The Champion more than any other!


Got to give "The Champion" props for creativity. A suspended, David Blaine-style cage, ghosts and motorcycles are not usually a part of the average hockey team's equipment. If only they were! The Champion managed to mangle other winter sports as well, as their fire safety version of ski jumping will attest...


I mean, seriously, that is the most complicated fire safety protocol I've ever seen -- Tie the ends of a blanket or hall carpet to the window, summon the German shepherds to yank it taught as you don your roller skates and ski jump to safety? Just make that cheapo slumlord landlord cough up the dough for a fire escape already.

Well, Alphans, the ref is blowing his whistle and the first period for Puck's ode to the rink is over. With the Paralympics less than a week away, we have more surprises in store.

Next time we lace up, I promise a special, hockey treat from Canada's own golden age of comics and Canadian comic book star, Jeff Lemire.

Beavers Up!

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