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Sunday, January 2, 2011

Superhero Sunday: Alouette, Je Te Plumerai

That would be Peregrine, there, under
 the yellow speech bubble. Zut!
Not much is known about the French superhero Peregrine from Marvel Comics. He came into play during the 1982 Marvel Cross-over mini-series Contest of Champions in which heroes were collected from Earth to fight in a contest for . . . oh, I don't know, rare stamps or something. With a shortage of international heroes in the Marvel Universe, superheroes like Le Peregrine were created to show that this was a global happening. There was also a young lady from Ireland calling herself Shamrock whose super-power was . . . really, really good luck. (Not kidding.) Her superhero career ended some years later when she broke her leg and figured her luck had run out. (Blimey!) Also, I think those kids finally stole her marshmallow cereal.
At least he doesn't have a pencil-thin
mustache and a beret.
Spiffy costume, though, lassie.
When the contest was over, we didn't see much of Peregrine until he was asked to join Silver Sable's Wild Pack - a kind of super-powered INTERPOL. He is basically an incidental character in the Marvel universe. Writing French characters is not really Marvel's strong suit. They pronounce things like "zat" instead of "that," exclaim "sacrebleu!" a lot, and - though I can't confirm this - probably have an inexplicable fondness for Jerry Lewis. Also "peregrine" is not a French word, so the fact that he was called "Le Peregrine" in Marvel's version of France was inaccurate. (In French versions of the comics, he was called Le Faucon Pèlerin, meaning "Peregrine Falcon.") Peregrine Falcons are indigenous to many countries in the world, including France, so they did at least get that much right.
Peregrine's alter ego Alain Racine is a writer born in Moulins, France, but little else is known of his origin.
His suit allows him to fly through the use of an anti-gravity belt (really need to get me one of those) and jet turbines beneath his glider wings, so, no, he does not have to flap his arms continuously. He is an expert at the martial art of savate, also known as French kick-boxing, but possesses no actual super-powers . . . apart from body odor and rudeness, no doubt.

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