The recent announcement that Booster Gold will be rebooted as a Canadian in New 52's Justice League International has generated mixed feelings in me. On the one hand, it's about time the DCU got itself some Canadian heroes. I'd say Booster would join the Young All-Stars' Flying Fox, except that the character hasn't been seen SINCE Young All-Stars and has likely been erased from continuity. But while I want to be a proud Canuck here... Booster Gold? BOOSTER GOLD? If there ever was a more American concept for a superhero, I don't know what it is. A disgraced football star (with all due respect to the CFL, football is really more a part of American culture) from the future who started his career as a glam & glitz, corporate capitalist, celebrity hound. That's an American stereotype, not a Canadian one. Sure, Booster's come a long way since then, and I'd be proud to call him my countryman, but aside from saving some hockey players in the 5th issue of his original series, nothing about him ever sent out a Canadian vibe.
Of course, if I indulge in some honest national soul-searching, I have to admit that there are plenty of Canadians who fit his profile. The more socialist tendencies of my country are eroding away while Harper keeps an address on Sussex Drive, and American culture continues to filter through (filter! ha! like anything actually gets "filtered" at the border!). Canadian identity is a difficult thing to define, especially in opposition to American identity. I know it when I see it. I feel it. But I can't quite explain it. Canadians do come in all shapes, sizes, colors and creeds, and any member of the JLI could theoretically be given Canadian citizenship (while keeping their own culture, so Vixen, Rocket Red et. al count). I guess I'm responding to what's ICONIC about Canada and about superhero comics. And Booster Gold and Canada do not share any iconic traits.
So who COULD be retconned into a Canadian hero? Good question. If the idea was to make the JLI more international, then there are still two Americans on there. Guy Gardner might have been a candidate (does it strike you as right that all four Earth Lanterns are Americans?). His hard right politics might have pegged him as an Albertan Harper supporter. Too bad Ice is Norwegian, because her powers definitely lend themselves to Iconic Canada. If DC had been really crazy, they'd have put Metropolis on top of Toronto, the city that was used as its model, and made Superman an adopted Canadian (Saskatchewan is a better Kansas than Kansas).
Aquaman raised on the shores of Atlantic Canada? We've got PLENTY of lighthouses here. Our fauna might make it a nice home for Animal Man. Our native quirkiness might inspire heroes like Blue Devil, Aztek or the Heckler. Or if it's the politeness aspect you think is us, I notice they don't know where to put Fawcett City anymore. Doesn't the Marvel Family strike you as Canadian? Even a few villains to join lonesome Plastique would be nice. I'd take Crazy Quilt at this point (that's a sort of Canadian Mosaic joke).
I don't know who I'd import exactly, so I'll leave that up to you and the comments section.