Monday, March 28, 2016

Lost Character: American Eagle

Bad ass and modern!
For many years, Jason Strongbow, the American Eagle, wasn’t much more to me than a generic Marvel Universe Handbook entry. With his somewhat generic and possibly insulting costume, there really wasn’t anything there to make him a fan favorite character.

That all changed when Warren Ellis wrote him in Thunderbolts during the Civil War crossover. Suddenly, the Eagle’s boosted strength, speed, and limited invulnerability seemed AWESOME. If you have not read it, seek out Thunderbolts #115. It is an excellent issue with multiple cheer-out-loud moments. The upsetting thing is after this star-making performance thanks to Ellis, the American Eagle has done relatively little since. It is a pity; American Eagle has the potential to be one of the most popular Native American characters in comics.

Not a bad costume, but it might be offensive.
The original costume had its problems, but the updated look is simple and bad ass. With a modified motorcycle helmet and leather jacket, the new suit is less “super” but way cooler. This would be easy for cosplay, although the lack of a clear symbol might make the suit a bit hard to recognize.

American Eagle is still alive, and I believe still serving as a police officer on his reservation. That limits his long-distance storylines a bit, but as a guest star he’d be wonderful. A status quo change (maybe making him an FBI or SHIELD agent) would give him the opportunity to be a world-wide hero.

With an origin involving rare isotopes and Klaw’s sound beams, I think morphing American Eagle into an Inhuman would be easily retconned.

Costume: Lack of a symbol hurts a bit (+15)
Power Set: Fairly generic tough guy (+15)
Importance of Death: Still alive (+20)
Really an Inhuman?; Easily Retconned (+20)
Cosplay Chances: The helmet would the hardest part (+15)

Return Total: 85
One of my all-time favorite comic fights. 

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