Like many Marvel fanboys of the mid-1980's, I was a John Byrne super-fan--at least as much as my allowance would allow me to be, which is to say that I could scrape together enough cash for both his Fantastic Four run and the original volume of Alpha Flight that (like FF) he both wrote and illustrated. I had never been much of a fan of Byrne's Uncanny X-men run (written by Chris Clairmont), and though this was a spin-off of sorts, my affection for FF and appreciation Byrne's art was enough to draw me in. Alpha Flight seemed very exotic to 1983 me, primarily because, unlike every other superhero in my comic universe, they were from a country other than the United States; their adventures took place in the mysterious neighbor to the north--CANADA!
Issue 6 exemplifies a few elements of Alpha Flight that made it a favorite of mine. In this issue the heroine Snowbird battles a mystical creature with clear ties to the Canadian landscape that Snowbird protects in her heroic guise. Whether the totemic flourioshes were based on any actual mythology was of little consequence to me as the creature's name--Kolomoq--and the 5 1/2 page white-out battle "depicted" therein--panels with only dialogue and captions--were cool enough!