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Wolverine a Reader's Perspective Part 10

By: NLogan
THE WOLVERINE!

Art by John Byrne


Chronological Wolverine facts as revealed to the reader part X


Continuing our journey to understand the Wolverine character as was revealed to the reader issue to issue, month to month through his publication history. So from a reader's point of view here is Logan's history, who he was, and how and when we learned it!

Apr 1979
THE UNCANNY X-MEN 120
Writers: Chris Claremont and John Byrne
Penciller: John Byrne





The Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau is familiar with Wolverine. The code name Wolverine was given to Weapon X by James MacDonald Hudson, Canada's Weapon Alpha.



The X-Men are finally on their way home but before they leave Logan says goodbye to Mariko Yashida with a flower. The White Chrysanthemum is the imperial symbol of Japan.



The Japanese honorific suffix "san" is a respected peer, and the honorific "chan" means the person is endearing to the speaker. Logan likes Mariko a lot.

That is the first time Logan has told his name to someone in comics. It is the sixth and a half time the reader has seen it*.

*The first was in X-Men 103 when a leprechaun calls him by name, the second was in Iron Fist 15 in a narration box, James MacDonald Hudson called him by name the third and fourth times and he referred to himself by name in a thought bubble in the same issue in X-Men 109, he almost told Mariko his name a couple of issues back in Uncanny X-Men 118. See Wolverine a Reader's Perspective Parts IV, V, VI, and IX - NLogan

Flying home from Japan via Alaska the plane runs into a severe blizzard that cuts off every major airport and funnels them to Calgary, Alberta where a trap has been set for them. They encounter Weapon Alpha on the tarmac and try to take off again but Sasquatch destroys their plane. The team sneaks out and heads for the terminal.



We learn that Alpha Flight are Canadian government agents, a team of mutant super-heroes founded by James MacDonald Hudson with Wolverine as their first member. As a government agent Wolverine was a big success and later a failure due to his mental issues. Wolverine was a government operative and ran solo missions.



James MacDonald Hudson wanted Wolverine to be the team leader of Alpha Flight.



Wolverine has been to Calgary before as a "wild kid" and was involved with a madame of a house of ill-repute named Cracklin' Rosa. Incidentally Cracklin' Rosie 1970 was Neil Diamond's first #1 hit in the U.S. the song is actually about wine not necessarily about a woman. Cracklin' Rosé is a type of wine and Neil was inspired having heard about a Canadian First Nations tribe that had more men than women who used to drink away loneliness with wine as a substitute to women (thanks mom for that bit of trivia, she is a big Diamond enthusiast*). Logan is falling in love with Mariko Yashida. Enhanced senses aside Wolverine is so caught up in the past and thinking about love he is caught totally unawares by Sasquatch. Wolverine is also a litterbug tossing his cigarette butt.

*See Make Mine Marvel V for some more insights to my mom's Diamond mania and another wine song. -NLogan



Sasquatch calls Wolverine by name and rank "Captain Logan". We learn that Logan held the rank of Captain as a special government operative in the Canadian military/intelligence. Logan is again established as his last name*.

*The first time was when Padraic the leprechaun called him Mr. Logan in X-Men 103. - NLogan

May 1979
THE UNCANNY X-MEN 121
Writers: Chris Claremont and John Byrne
Penciller: John Byrne





Wolverine says he was not given a choice about being changed. We do not know what was changed but Logan references it as a change in his state of being. Could this be the first ever reference to where his claws and unbreakable bones came from? Or is it just a reference to all of the time, money, and effort spent to train and develop Logan into Weapon X/Wolverine?* Logan says he also didn't have a choice about joining Alpha Flight.

*See Giant-Sized X-Men 1 in Wolverine a Reader's Perspective Part II- NLogan

James MacDonald Hudson who is now calling himself Vindicator instead of Weapon Alpha (or perhaps like Weapon X/Wolverine he has both a call sign and code name) and his wife Heather gave Logan a home. The Hudsons took in Logan when he was a feral wild-child!



Wolverine can control his battle lust and is the one to hold back Cyclops and ends the fight. Funny that, eh bub? Wolverine the crazy man is the voice of reason to hold back someone fighting-mad.



Wolverine knows Garson and doesn't like him. Just like the X-Men we have gotten past the surface Wolverine and are beginning to know his true self.



Wolverine lives in the moment. For the moment let's examine what we know.

Wolverine has had an interesting past as revealed to us thus far.
We have learned that he comes from the wilderness reaches of Canada.
We have learned that he was a feral wild-child.
He often refers to himself as a psycho short for psychopath a mentally unstable person who is violent and dangerous.
We have learned he was given a home with James and Heather Hudson.
We have learned that James was close enough to Logan to be almost considered a brother.
We have learned that he went to Japan as a punk kid and had good teachers in learning Japanese.
We have learned that he hasn't been "hit like that since he was a kid" when referring to Iron Fist's Bear Paw Thrust strike. Did he mean clobbered hard? I doubt it. He had been hit by the Hulk for crying out loud. No I think he meant the specific kind of strike or manner of delivery by a trained martial artist. I think he was referring to either fighting martial artists or training in martial arts in Japan as a kid.
We have learned that he has been to Calgary, Alberta as a wild kid and was involved with a wild woman.
We have learned that Logan has had lovers but has never been in love and they were all love 'em and leave 'em relationships (until he started falling for Jean and Mariko).
We have learned that Wolverine was a special agent Canadian government operative trained as a living weapon and his natural powers and skills developed and enhanced.
We have learned that he was selected to lead a team of mutant superheroes called Alpha Flight.

If anyone has ever told you we didn't know about Wolverine's origins until decades after his initial appearance in comics, I am here to tell you they were wrong. They didn't pay attention. Did you? Most of his main origin points have been laid out for us in a little under five years of publication history from his first appearance*.

*See Marvel's Hulk 181 in-house ad, Incredible Hulk 181, X-Men 96, X-Men 109, Iron Fist 15, Uncanny X-Men 118, Uncanny X-Men 120, Uncanny X-Men 121, have you been paying attention at all? Go back and read Wolverine a Reader's Perspective Parts 1-10.-NLogan

Want to learn more about the type of man Logan is, more about him being trained as a living weapon as Weapon X, more about the superhero called Wolverine? Well don't go anywhere bub, ya might miss something!
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NLogan Posted on Apr 30, 2017 at 04:51 PM

Thanks!

jkatz Posted on Apr 03, 2017 at 06:42 PM

Hard to believe this series is already at part 10, and we haven't even gotten to the 80s yet. This is Pulitzer levels of research you're bringing us here, NLogan.

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