Justin Trudeau has already proved himself to be a successful, progressive politician, but he’s also winning in the cool stakes thanks to Marvel. Yes, our very own prime minister has become a comic book hero.
On Wednesday, Trudeau made his comic book debut in Civil War II: Choosing Sides No. 5, written by Chip Zdarsky and with art by Ramón Pérez. The storyline came about after Zdarsky was approached by Marvel to pen a story about Canadian superhero team Alpha Flight, and he decided that if he was going to make it a truly Canadian piece, Trudeau definitely had to be a part of it. Zdarsky told CBC News that he approached the prime minster’s office, and although they were unable to endorse the comic book, they did give it the green light.
The story focuses on a new character named Ulysses, who can see into the future. When Ulysses gives some important information to the members of Alpha Flight — who now work for Captain Marvel’s worldwide defence program — they’re left divided on what they should do with it. They then turn to Trudeau for advice on how to proceed.
And he’s not just your typical walk-on, save-the-day type of superhero either. “I liked the idea of him actually engaging them in an ethical debate,” said Zdarsky.
Sporting red boxing gloves and a vest emblazoned with a red Maple Leaf logo, Trudeau even knocks out Tony Stark (aka Iron Man) during their weekly boxing sessions — would he really be the bad-ass superhero we all wanted him to be if he hadn’t?
Trudeau isn’t the first politician to be transformed into a comic book hero. He follows in the footsteps of the U.S.’s President Barack Obama, who, in 2009, made his comic book debut in Amazing Spider-Man No. 583. Trudeau’s father, Pierre Trudeau, was the first politician to join the Marvel superhero ranks after appearing in The Uncanny X-Men in 1979.
Trudeau’s comic book incarnation proves he has become a leading figure in popular culture. It could also help him appeal to a completely new demographic, a sentiment expressed by Toronto-based cartoonist Pérez, who described Trudeau as “a social icon, with a youthful demographic and a contemporary outlook.”
Pérez also revealed that the cover was a lot more than just using Trudeau’s likeness. “I didn’t want to do a stuffy cover — just like a suit and tie — put his likeness on the cover and call it a day,” he said. “I wanted to kind of evoke a little bit of what’s different about him than other people in power right now. You don’t see [Barack] Obama strutting around in boxing gear, doing push-ups in commercials or whatnot.”
Justin Trudeau has always been a superhero to us (thanks to his stance on feminism), but we’re glad to see he’s been transformed into a comic book hero too.