Johnny Canuck, a personification of Canada and a member of the same family of figures as John Bull (Great Britain), Uncle Sam (US), and Marianne (France). Since the 1860s, editorial cartoonists have depicted Johnny Canuck as a wholesome, if simpleminded, young man wearing the garb of a habitant, farmer, logger, rancher or soldier. He is often drawn resisting the blandishments or bullying of John Bull or Uncle Sam. Johnny Canuck is also the name of a Canadian comic-book hero introduced in 1941, a muscular air force captain/secret agent who protected Canadians from the Nazi menace.
The use of such stock figures declined after WWII; however, another comic-book character, Captain Canuck, a superhero instead of just a hero, was introduced in 1975. He wore red tights and "electro-thermic underwear" for warmth and on his forehead sported a red maple leaf.
Johnny Canuck: Canada's answer to Nazi Oppression, March 1942, artist Leo Bachle, pen, brush and black ink on woven paper (courtesy Library and Archives Canada/C-137065).
Captain Canuck was a new superhero (compared to the former Johnny Canuck, who was simply a hero) introduced in 1975 (courtesy Comely Comics).
JOHN ROBERT COLOMBO
Links to Other Sites
POW! BLAM! ZOWIE! eh?
A review of a book about "the hidden curiosities of Canadian comic book art." From the "Literary Review of Canada."
Canadian Heroes in Fact and Fiction
See brief profiles and bibliographies for many notable historical Canadian figures (real and fictional). From Library and Archives Canada.