Sunday, 23 January 2011

Weekly NHL Guardian Project Update

We're back again on a chilly Sunday with more comic book unveilings. The NHL Guardian Project rolls on with seven more Guardians unveiled this past week, so we'll continue to run down the similarities between these Guardians and some of the more recognizable superheroes that have a hold on pop culture. Again, this is just some fun with the NHL Guardian Project before the big unveiling at the NHL All-Star Game on January 30, so don't take this article too seriously.

If you want to see any of the previous Guardians that have been unveiled, feel free to check out this article for the first eight Guardians or this article for the next eight Guardians. Seven more NHL-themed superheroes are on-deck, so let's get to them!

We'll start in Calgary where the Flame holds the fort. The Flame seemingly would be the equivalent of Pyro from the X-Men series or Johnny Storm aka The Human Torch from the Fantastic Four, but having the ability to shoot fire from his eyepiece reminds me of the X-Men's Cyclops as well. "Lava balls from his fingers" just sounds uncomfortable, so does that mean he has lava flowing through his veins? And apparently he can create "flaming stampedes" which means that the near-dead fire-horse is being revived by Stan Lee.

We move on to Columbus where the Blue Jacket has an arsenal of weaponry at his fingertips. As a "serious minded union soldier", I assume he'll protect the interests of the players with all his might as the NHLPA could use a good warrior. He does have "a devastating array of weaponry" attached to him, so I'm thinking that this Blue Jacket soldier is more machine than he is man. Thanks to the revamp of the Captain America, I'd say the Blue Jacket is a close copy of the stars-and-stripes superhero. That, or an Americana-themed Punisher. He was a fan of guns as well. Then again, maybe he's just a primitive Sentinel?

We head south to the state of Texas where the Star defends the city of Dallas. I have to admit that this Guardian's name is a little narcissistic, but who am I to judge? I find him to be very much like Electro in his electrical abilities. He's a "celestial enforcer", but I'm not quite sure what that means entirely. He "travels on solar wind", but I'm not sure why he would choose to travel this way when all it does is land him on the North or South Pole and/or send him clear past the Earth altogether. And this "magnetic tension field" stuff? Well, it is important in the field of magnetohydrodynamics, but let's just say that ten year-olds probably won't get the theory behind it. My guess is that the Star is probably from some far-off galaxy where this stuff is as common as 2+2, and is not of this planet whatsoever.

The fourth Original Six Guardian we see is the Red Wing. Only the Red Wing isn't wearing the Original Six logo, so I'm thinking we might need an update to this Guardian. The Red Wing seems like a poor man's Transformer, resembling something like Jetfire with wheels. He reportedly has "all the power of a Formula One racer and a fighter jet", so I assume he moves fast with great bursts of acceleration. Being that he's an "automotive empath", he comes equipped with Command Start, and can control any vehicle with his mind. He's like the Kreskin of Transformers!

We jump north of the border to encounter the Maple Leaf. Who actually isn't a leaf at all. However, being a walking and talking maple tree means that he actually is an ent, and he is only slightly more intimidating than Dr. Reggie Bushroot of Darkwing Duck fame. He is literally an "immovable object", so we just need to find the unstoppable force for the paradox. I like the Original Six logo once again, but if he can grow exponentially larger at will, can he become bigger than the planet? At what point does this power reach its limit? Will we see a Little Shop of Horrors reference at some point?

Next, we head to the desert to meet the Coyote. The Coyote is the NHL's version of Wolverine in Gambit's clothes with Sabertooth's claws. Strangely, he's also a drifter like Wolverine was in his past. He also has the same ability as that of the Sandman to control any amount of shifting sand. Oh, he also has a pack of Coyotes that roam the country side as his own personal K-9 unit. Much like the Phoenix Coyotes, I'm guessing this guy will be a major "underdog" in most battles until he "unleashes" his true powers. Puns are free of charge in this article.

The last Guardian we encounter today is the Avalanche. The Avalanche has some very distinct similarities to that of Mr. Freeze from the Batman franchise as well as the abilities of Iceman from the X-Men franchise. The fact that he's the "Rocky Mountain mad man" worries me a little, and I'd be very concerned about his reputation as an "unbridled risk taker". I understand the ability to control ice, but how does he control rock? Can he cause earthquakes? Is he able to make mountains out of molehills? What are the limits of this power?

There are your seven newest Guardians to arrive on the scene. Again, you can see all of the Guardians on January 30 at the NHL All-Star Game from Raleigh, North Carolina when they are are officially unveiled as part of the NHL Guardian Project!

Until then, keep your sticks on the ice!

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