James MacDonald Hudson was born in London, Ontario, Canada. In his professional life he worked for a company called Am-Can Oil Corporation and created a suit which would allow him to collect oil deposits underground. Hudson discovered that the suit was supposed to be used as a weapon for his boss, Jerome Jaxon. Hudson then resigned from Am-Can, disabled the suit and kept the helmet for himself.
Hudson made a deal with the Canadian Parliament to avoid charges of theft. Hudson was assigned as the head of a research and development program called Department H funded by the Canadian government.
Hudson had married his girlfriend, Heather McNeil, by this time. Hudson then formed his own team called Alpha Flight that was part of the program in Department H. Hudson improved the design of his suit and originally wore it as Weapon Alpha when he confronted Wolverine. After a battle with Wolverine's teammates, the X-Men, Hudson became Vindicator.
James MacDonald Hudson was created by John Byrne and Chris Claremont. Hudson originally called himself Weapon Alpha in his first appearance in X-Men vol 1 #109 (2/1978) written by Claremont, drawn by Byrne (pencils) and Terry Austin (inks). Claremont and Byrne co-plotted the storyline together. Hudson changed his code-name to Vindicator in the Uncanny X-Men vol 1 #120 (4/1979) written and drawn by the same team. Hudson changed his code-name to Guardian in Alpha Flight vol 1 #3 (10/1983) written and drawn by Byrne.
Mayor Story Arcs
The funding for Department H had been cut and the programs for teams such as Alpha Flight was closed as a result. After Alpha Flight decided to stay together as a team, Hudson became Guardian. During a mission, Guardian was apparently killed when he was transported to Jupiter's moon. There, he meets an alien race called the Qwrlln. They attempt to heal Hudson and fuse his suit to his nervous system.
At Department H, his new director, General Jeremy Clarke orders his scientists to clone Hudson, steal his memories and then shoot him into outer space. This plan fails however, as he lands in Antarctica. A new Hudson reappears and is in fact a clone by Department H. He eventually returns and the clone becomes leader of Beta Flight. Later both Hudsons become captured, but the clone is killed during the escape.
In more recent times, Guardian, along with the rest of Alpha Flight, left Earth with a star ship full of Plodex eggs, intent on seeing the eggs home to their planet of origin. In the meantime, a new version of Alpha Flight took up the mantle of Alpha Flight while the original Flight was in space. Among these new members was Zuzha Yu, the apparent daughter of Puck whom he had never spoken of before. She took on his legacy and started calling herself Puck as well.
Guardian and his wife Heather where finally expecting their first child. Although a happy time for both of them, it was during this period that James was abducted by an old acquaintance whom had a grudge against him. While his wife was in labor and was surrounded by her good friends from the X-Men, James was assaulted and beaten. He managed to escape however, and with the help of the X-Men managed to defeat the assailant. After the fight, James seemed badly beaten, and was even thought he would not make it alive. When he however heard of his child being born, he regained strength and made a full recovery. James now finally had his very own family. This did not stop him from being a hero in Alpha Flight.
During a battle with the Collective, it appeared all the members of Alpha Flight were either seriously hurt or killed. Puck was one of the teammates to have died. Sasquatch was all that remained of the original team. He then made a new team called Omega Flight to keep the legacy of his fallen team-members alive. Sasquatch then gave the Guardian uniform to Michael Pointer to be the new Guardian on the new team.
During the events of the Chaos War, many deceased characters from the Marvel Universe where brought back to life by an ancient God for a short period of time. This included James and his perished teammates from Alpha Flight. However, when the evil god was defeated, some of the resurrected teammates remained alive, among them James and his other teammates. The group re-assembled again and started working as a superhero team again, with renewed strength and happy they got a second chance in life.
Alpha Flight Returned
James and Heather had a difficult time returning from the dead, especially when they learned they no longer had custody of their child Claire Hudson. The custody was given to family after the two of them died. The two even had to go as far as go to court to get their child back. The defense told the judge that the child would have an extreme amount of risk being parented by people whom fought as superheroes. Their assumed deaths was an example of this.
Earth-1610 - Ultimate universe
James Hudson was a war buddy of Wolverine during their days in Iraq. Wolverine helped save his life many times and introduced James to his current spouse. He and his wife had trouble procreating and Wolverine conveniently returned to give him his son, Jimmy. Since then, James became the sheriff in a small area of Florida, watching and covering for Jimmy has his propensity for trouble increased. One day out on helicopter patrol, James spotted Jimmy coming out of a car explosion. Jimmy was confused as he "miraculously" healed after suffering severe injuries; James was still reluctant to answer Jimmy's questions.
The following day, former X-Men's Kitty Pryde came before Jimmy. James didn't know who the girl was and decided to investigate. Kitty had come to give Jimmy a box of Wolverine's belongings, his legacy. The box came with a holographic message from Wolverine, to reveal the truth to Jimmy. After finding out Kitty had told Jimmy the truth of his origins, both he and his wife were offended for Kitty's interference in their lives and asked her to leave. Kitty justified her appearance as fulfilling a dead man's wish and left.
After Jimmy found out, James and Jimmy had a talk about things. As a policeman, James is obligated to arrest or kill all illegal mutants, but naturally he couldn't because he loved his son. Jimmy wanted to know why the truth wasn't told to him earlier; James justified his decision not to tell because his father became famous at the time. James comforted his emotional son over the twilight sun.
X-Men: The Animated Series
Guardian appeared in the episode "Repo Man," voiced by Barry Flatman. Much like in the comics, James and Heather encountered Wolverine shortly after his escape from Weapon X, and took him into their home. James and Logan served together on Alpha Flight for some time, until Wolverine abandoned the team to journey to America and join Professor Xavier's X-Men. In the present, James and a reluctant Heather lure Wolverine back to Canada, seemingly to force him back with Alpha Flight. However, it turns out that Vindicator and the head of Department H actually want to examine Logan to find out why he was the only one to survive the adamantium-bonding process. When Heather's scan fails to provide the answers Department H is looking for, Jason orders that Logan's skeleton be extracted, regardless of whether or not the procedure will kill him. Refusing to kill her friend, Heather resigns in disgust and tries to set Logan free. Still embittered by Logan's past departure, Vindicator attacks Wolverine at Jason's behest. However, the other members of Alpha Flight join the fight against Vindicator, realizing that they'd been misled into thinking that Department H only wanted Logan so they could get him back on the team. Logan overpowers Vindicator and is about to kill him, but spares his life when Heather pleads for him to stop.
- Guardian appears as an NPC in X-Men Legends II: Rise of Apocalypse, voiced by Jim Ward. He and Heather can be encountered in an abandoned Weapon X facility.
- Guardian appears as a playable character in Marvel Super Hero Squad Online.
- Guardian appeared as part of the Walmart-exclusive Marvel Legends Ares Build-a-Figure wave from Hasbro.
- Eaglemoss Publications produced a Guardian figurine for The Classic Marvel Figurine Collection.
- Bowen Designs produced a bust of James Hudson as Vindicator.
- Guardian was featured as part of an Alpha Flight-themed Marvel Minimates box set from Diamond Select, which was an SDCC exclusive.
- Guardian appeared in the Marvel Universe line from Hasbro.
- Hasbro later released an updated Marvel Legends Guardian figure.