Hockey Headlines

Sunday, 9 January 2011

NHL Guardians Update

The NHL Guardian Project continues to run over on their Facebook page, but we're here tonight to bring to you the first few NHL Guardians that have been revealed. I don't know how many of you have been following the project's progress thus far, but there have been eight Guardians that have been revealed. The very first Guardian was revealed on January 1, and we're making our way towards the final Guardian who will be seen at the NHL All-Star Game in Raleigh, North Carolina. We'll run through these quickly, and I'll give my thoughts on each Guardian as well.

The very first NHL Guardian that was revealed was the Penguin, which may cause some confusion with this Penguin in the world of comic books. However, the Penguin resembles that of Frozone from Disney/Pixar's The Incredibles with his ability to shoot icicles from his hands and travel on a frozen sheet of ice. In fact, the Penguin is dressed almost exactly the same as Frozone! I'm not suggesting that the NHL Guardian Project is infringing on anyone's design, but one looks an awful lot like the other when side-by-side and has the exact same powers. Hmmm....

The second Guardian seen was the King, not to be confused with "The King" or "the King". Or Elvis Presley or anyone else nicknamed "the king". The King wears a ton of armor, has a shield that can create a force field, and a sword that causes earthquakes. Depending on how they play this, the King could be invincible to any physical attack with his force fields and ability to open Grand Canyon-sized chasms, or he could simply be an overly-protected, sword-wielding knight that causes the ground to shake a little. I'm hoping it's somewhere in the middle for this Guardian.

The third Guardian released to the public was the Hurricane. No, not this guy. Or this guy. Instead, we get a male version of the X-Men's Storm, only with less lightning and fog. His description makes him sound like he's a schizophrenic meteorologic nightmare. A personality as wild as the weather patterns? Hurricanes are, from what I've seen and read, not very nice to be around, so maybe we're looking at our first villain in the NHL Guardian Project? Anyone have a windbreaker and/or a white coat?

The fourth Guardian to be revealed was the Blackhawk. There are a couple of items I like on this Guardian. I like the Original Six marking on the upper left of his chest. I like how the suit looks and acts like Iron Man's suit, right down to the palms of his hands. I'm hoping the Guardian itself is a Native American so that the Native American peoples are properly represented. However, if he controls the element of wind, does that mean the Blackhawk can neutralize the Hurricane with his power? I'm interested in seeing how that one will play out.

The fifth reveal of the NHL Guardian Project saw the Sabre come to life. While Sabre can control the element of water in all its forms, I have to wonder what happened to his left arm. Does his shoulder just end like a fire hydrant spewing water everywhere? While, exactly, does Buffalo's Guardian get the power of water? Is Buffalo known for its rivers, lakes, and hydro power? Is he made of water? That would be kind of cool. He'd be similar to the Liquidator from Disney's Darkwing Duck! That would make for some interesting scenarios.

The sixth Guardian unveiled by the NHL Guardian Project was the Flyer. As per his name, the Flyer comes blessed with a pair of bird's wings, similar to those of Hawkman or the X-Men's Angel. However, being a master of telekinesis and mind-control makes him a little more interesting. Essentially, he can move objects with his mind, or make you move them for him. Add to the fact that he's a "punishing warrior" and suddenly you have a dangerous flying control freak. The Flyer could be the most interesting of the Guardians yet.

The seventh Guardian presented was the Oiler. The Oiler looks like a cross between Juggernaut and Magneto in appearance. I like how he's the protector of the Great White North. I guess the other five Canadian Guardians will serve a different country. He controls winter and wintery patterns, meaning we have another Storm wannabe, and oil manipulation. What, pray tell, is "oil manipulation"? If there's a spill, he can clean it up? The Gulf of Mexico could use this Guardian.

The last of the unveiled Guardians is the Devil. Not Satan himself of course, but a demonic image to be sure. Being the "underworld maverick", I assume he patrols the river Styx and lives in the inner circle of Hades, but I'm sure more will be revealed about this hot-headed bachelor. If he has infrared vision, he's more like the Terminator or Predator. He may need a Tic Tac for that flaming breath, but I want to know what he can do with this "master matter manipulator" skill. Is the world a bucket of Legos to the Devil whereby he can change the world around as he sees fit? That would be a cool skill.

There are the first eight Guardians unveiled by the NHL and the NHL Guardian Project thus far. While I took a bit of a tongue-in-cheek look at them, I am very interested in the graphic novel that is being produced featuring the NHL Guardians. I think it might turn out to be a cool idea if the project is marketed right and not too "ComiCon" for the average hockey fan. Only time will tell, but we'll see the final results on January 30 at the 2011 NHL All-Star Game in Raleigh, North Carolina!

Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!

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