U.S. domination of the comics medium during the 1950s and 1960s meant that when Canadian superheroes did finally return during the 1969-74 period, they were initially buffoons. The first of these satirical figures, Gary Dunford's Captain Canada, was not in the comics, but rather was the star of outrageous adventures aired on CBC Radio's Gerussi! show.
Dunford's character was soon followed by a number of comic book spoofs, including Captain Canada and Capitaine Kébec. In addition, during the past three decades, many of Canada's political cartoonists have utilized national superheroes to lampoon the country's politicians; thus a form of comic art that partly derived from our national tradition of political cartooning has come full circle to in turn influence that tradition.
The first national superhero to appear in Canadian comics following the Golden Age period was Stanley Berneche and Peter Evans' Captain Canada, who made his debut in 1972 in the fourth issue of the Ottawa-based satirical magazine Fuddle Duddle. Cap was as much a spoof of the U.S. superheroes as of Canadian attitudes.
In his first adventure, Captain Canada is pitted against the villainous Media Master, who is, of course, bent on world domination. Accompanying the oafish Cap are his sidekick Beaver Boy (Beav) and a young woman named Pam. Cap eventually defeats his enemy after ingesting the magic muskeg which gives him his super-powers.
In his second adventure, Captain Canada is redesigned, becoming a right-wing Neanderthal. Cap's associates are also transformed: Beav becomes a long-haired subversive and Pam, a flower child. The story, which focusses on the 1972 election campaign, sees Cap storm through the Ottawa counterculture.
Duped by a group of anarchists, Cap almost blows up the House of Commons, and then goes on a hippie-bashing rampage which begins with his immortal battle cry (printed in John Robert Colombo's first book of Canadian quotations) "Beavers Up!" The story ends with Prime Minister Trudeau rescuing Cap from arrest.
In their third adventure, Captain Canada and his companions travel to the Canadian Arctic, where they thwart an invasion spearheaded by Tricky Dicky. Unfortunately, the many fans of the strip were not able to see the final Captain Canada story, as Fuddle Duddle folded in 1972, following the publication of issue No. 5.