Or – “Finally Looks Like We’re Gettin’ Somewhere Now…”


I’ve been whining about this particular series since the first issue, complaining about the name, about the pacing, about what I consider the almost-criminal misuse of Beta Ray Bill and Sasquatch… Recent discussions at the store (Gatekeeper Hobbies, Huntoon & Gage, Topeka! Ask us about Proxy Jason’s terrible demise in the chipper-shredder!) have convinced me that I may have been a bit too harsh. Rather than being bothered by what the characters are DOING, I’ve been focused on what they’re NOT doing that I think they should. So! Today, we have a clean slate, I’m going to set aside my contentiousness and look at this book from a fresh, new perspective… A whoooole neeewww woooorld! A wooorld that something something blaaaah…

Previously, on Omega Flight: Michael Pointer is possessed by the combined energies of all the mutants depowered on M-Day (including, apparently, most of the New Warriors) and OF1.jpgkills most of Alpha Flight in a rage. Julia Carpenter is driven out of America by the unforgiving hypocrisy of Ms. Marvel. John Walker is ordered by Tony Stark to go to Canada to help spearhead a new government superforce. Walter Langkowski is recruited to head a new Department H unit. Simon Walters is plagued by dreams of great beasts, and finds himself on a trek to a mall in Toronto. Elizabeth Twoyoungmen, having gained great power from the demise of her father, doesn’t want to return to superhuman service. Together, they might comprise a dangerous and formidable fighting unit, but separately, they are all Omega and no Flight, until the Wrecking Crew comes to town. Drawn by some sort of connection to the Great Beasts of Canadian legend, The Crew ends up traveling to their pocket dimension and gaining much greater powers, the better to destroy the world with. With Langkowski (Sasquatch( missing and Pointer (the new Guardian) emotionally stunted, Arachne (Carpenter), U.S. Agent (Walker) and Talisman (Twoyoungmen) set out for Toronto to stop the Wrecker and company. But they didn’t count on the precociousness of Julia Carpenter’s daughter, Rachel…


As the would-be Guardian wrestles with his somewhat forced responsibilities, the rest of his erstwhile teammates fly head on into an army of creatures from dimension X… Their helicopter is torn to shreds, and Talisman identifies them as demons, but U.S. Agent doesn’t care WHAT they are, so long as he can get his boot to their teeth. Ordering Arachne to engineer them a soft landing, Agent prepares for he ‘copter to go down, as Talisman transforms into her costumed form. As U.S. Agent bludgeons a demon away from his shattered window, Talisman makes the connection between their seemingly-separate problems…


As the helicopter crashes, Arachne crates a psychic web to catch it, straining her powers to the breaking point, but saving the ship. They’re overwhelmed by demons, but Talisman makes the save this time, blasting them away with eldritch fire… As half the team makes their first foray together, the target of their rescue mission finds himself in peculiar straits. As I mentioned last issue, Sasquatch draws his very POWER from Tanaraq, one of the beasts themselves, and being lef behind in their dimension has given his powers a shot in the arm (including his standard-issue healing factor) but left his mind in much more dire straits, and I ain’t talking Mark Knopfler…


Well, that can’t be good. The roar of Sasquatch’s awakening surprises even the combatants in our regular dimension, and Arachne is startled by the ferocity in the howl. U.S. Agent tells her to forget that (and the flying horse-headed creature in the air above them) and get back to the fighting. Firing his sidearm into the demon horde, Agent lets loose a stream of profanity that woud make a sailor blush. Beta Ray Bill (the aforementioned horse-headed man) retakes the Wrecker, drawing him back into conflict, but Piledriver hits him for the sucker punch from behind. Talisman quickly attacks, trying to find her primary objective so she can go home to her people…


Talisman and Bill end up back to back, holding off a battalion of demons, and making their introductions quickly, as a new menace crashes into their midst. Unfortunately for Talisman, it’s a menace that she knows, a menace that SHOULD be a hero, and it is the main reason that she agreed to work with the team in the FIRST place… Sasquatch has officially popped his 9-foot-tall orange fuzzy cork…


U.S. Agent barely knocks her out of the way of ‘Squatch’s hammering fists, and Beta Ray Bill is ambushed by Thunderball and Piledriver (whose speech pattern seems unusually intellectual) but quickly pops back up and confronts them in combat. Agent and Talisman rise agan, and Walker sorta flirts “We have to stop dancing like this, Talisman. It’s getting too cozy.” She accuses him of dreaming, while the Wrecking Crew jokes abut their new-found power. When Bulldozer tries to rush a truckload of refugees from the battle, Archne quickly trips him up, flinging him away with her psionic webbing. Sasquatch takes Agent’s shield to the head, but is knocked away with ease, only to be caught by Beta Ray Bill. Staring at the strange equestrian face, Walker asks what Bill is. “I am DEATH to these beasts! Brace yourself!” They fall into a horde of demons, as Sasquatch once again returns to try and eat Talisman… She can’t talk him down, until reinforcements arrive from the strangest places…


The new Guardian attacks, blasting the demons away with near-limitless power, befoe Sasquatch attacks. “He’s not in his right mind!” says Talisman. “We’ve seen this before! H’s possessed by the Great Beasts.” As the mind-controlled Sasquatch engages him, the man once known as Michael is quickly overpowered…


The Guardian starts to live up to his name and legacy, refusing to use his powers again for lethal purposes. Given that a majority of his psychotic rage as “The Collective” was hinted to be because of the Xorn entity in his mind, he’s remarkably calm about it. But Sasquatch has a retort for his “I won’t kill…”


I’m not really sure what to make of his series. Starting as an ongoing, but being downgraded to limited series status, it’s obviously going to have story hooks and plotlines left over, and reports out of Marvel indicate that sales are at least healthy enough to entertain the thought of a new series. But I have many questions, as children often do, starting with the obvious: With the Wrecking Crew unconscious from Michael’s attack, won’t Sasquatch be outgunned? And what are the Great Beasts actually trying to attain? Will Talisman join up, or will there be more recruits? I’ve always thought that half the fun of Alpha Flight in it’s heydey was the constantly changing lineup and raison d’etre, and it will be interesting to see how Oeming handles another limited, or even an ongoing series.

Michael Avon Oeming writes an interesting yarn, and the pacing finally catches up to the story proper wth this issue. Also, it’s nice to see Beta Ray Bill in action for what might as well be the first time. Unfortunately, penciller Scott Kolins is working in a very murky palette, with some scratchy linework that detracts from the overall package for me. Still and all, it’s got some nice notions to it, and the characters that make up the team are at least interesting. I wouldn’t mind more O.F. in the future… Omega Flight #4 rates 3 out of 5 stars (because I’m all out of Canadian Maple Leaves.)



About Author

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture! And a nice red uniform.


  1. This is the issue that convinced me not to buy the final part. I am curious about how this crap ends (and I dislike the villains, pacing, and the art) but not enough to send Marvel the message that this would be welcome back as an ongoing. After this mini it would take the art being handled by Colleen Doran to get me to touch any ongoing by the name of Omega Flight.

  2. Happenstance on

    They seriously need to stop having this new “Guardian” tear up on EVERY SINGLE PAGE IN WHICH HE APPEARS. We get it, Marvel…he’s emo. He’s more emo than Penance, he just doesn’t mutilate himself.

    Other than that (and the ugly artwork), I’m enjoying this well enough, especially now that we’re finally into the Big Fight Scene stage, where we should’ve been two issues ago.

    (Don’t worry, Jim. I’m pretty sure Sasquatch is going to survive. And Snowbird’s been hinted at. I don’t know Aurora and Northstar’s current status…)

    Wow, what’s up with Marvel? Alpha Flight flattened, Attilan bombed, Atlantis destroyed, Cap dead, horrific NW autopsy photos, Skrullektra, World War Hulk, Thunderbolts making CW look like a tea party..is anything going to be left of the old Marvel Universe in 2008? I’m starting to miss it.

  3. The Wrecking Crew were not knocked out by Guardian, their shown in the previews of OF #5 battling the flight


    I also love the fact people call this series slow, but look at New Avengers, Mighty Avengers, New Excalibur, Justice League of America, etc, etc. etc. There are far more slower books then this

  4. Matthew Peterson on

    Oh, I’m perfectly happy calling those books slow, too, as I have in my reviews for Mighty Avengers and New Avengers. I didn’t start covering JLA until The Lightning Saga, which chugged along pretty good, though.

  5. A great issue. I’m glad Marvel has finally published a book with a new premise, good characters, action, and a plot! Wolverine has gone over the same ground for 6 issues, X-Men plots fall apart, Avengers are often retread stories (don’t get me started on Initiative…).

    No reason Flight should be a mini. Where the heck is the ongoing Quesada promised for 7 months?

  6. I agree this story line has been dragging out far too long. It’s almost like the writers at Marvel have too many major plotline threads to sort out. Oh, wait, they do. Seems like the Initiative thing just started and it’s already losing steam. What else can they throw in right now? There are at least three Avenger groups, a Silent War, Captain America died, zombies abound, Hulk is smashing everyone and M-Day still hasn’t even been resolved (which in effect keeps 99% of the mutant Marvel Universe, except for “I’m over-exposed” Wolverine, out of the major action). It makes you wonder why Marvel thought now was a good time to relaunch a minor franchise like Omega Flight. I thought the Michael/the new Guardian began as an interesting character idea but do we need another boo-hoo-I’m-a-conflicted-hero right now? The Guardian, Penance and Sentry should all be given Prozac and a suite in the Negative Zone. Throw in Quicksilver while you’re at it. The hype and destroy pattern is becoming too typical. It would be nice to see the editors at Marvel clean up a few things before more books like this suffer.

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