So You Wanna Be Super? :: 5 Things To Consider Before Donning The CapePosted On March 15, 2015
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Everyone has dreamed of being a superhero! This was never more true than now in a society that spends a great deal of time and money consuming and collecting superhero movies, merchandise, and memorabilia. And why not? Superheroes are awesome! You could tell some ridiculous lie like “Minh, I really don’t want to be able to fly.” Or Minh, I just don’t think moving objects with my mind would be very useful.” BALDERDASH! You wouldn’t say that, would you? Because you want that power! You want to be able to literally move heaven and earth and save the day. You want to be a hero! NOT SO FAST! The Hero’s journey is not all spandex and fame. Everything has it’s price and the Hero’s journey is generally a perilous one. So before you lace up your custom boots, here are 5 things you should consider
Every hero faces hardship at the beginning their journey. Whether your parents are needlessly murdered in front of you as a small child (completely ruining your first R-rated movie experience), or you are drenched in a toxic sludge that turns you into a socially unacceptable freak of nature; your hero’s metal will undoubtedly be tested in the fiery flames of unfathomable suffering. You’ll have to deal with (or at least deeply suppress) this experience to eventually carve out your destiny. Sounds harsh I know, but this first hardship, albeit unfair, is the universe’s way of preparing you for a life of Heroics!
#2. You’re Not A Hero Until You’ve Made A Few Enemies
That’s right in the midst of doing good in your community and bringing low level punks to justice, you will find that you’ve somehow stepped on the toes of a real evil doer. A villain. A person who is driven to plot, execute, and see through their evil workings to fruition. Maybe even more driven than you. Whether this person is motivated by greed and you stand in the way of an enormous fortune, or just a classmate who’s father you killed (totally on accident of course) if you thwart them enough this person will become your enemy. Villains are a scary thing because they consider your action against them personal and will delve deep into your personal life if it means taking you out of the picture. Luckily, their motivations are generally misguided and will cause them to misstep somewhere along the line. If you get into trouble, see if you can coax him into a dramatic aside. A true villain can’t resist the temptation.
No matter how much you love the citizens of the whatever great city you serve, you will never be one of them. Again, you are a HERO! You are THE man or woman or anthropomorphic reptile for your time. This means that no matter how much you want to lead a normal life it simply won’t be possible because the people need you. You have a job to do. Doing your job means instilling fear in the hearts of those who would do evil. You can’t accomplish this if you are vulnerable like the ones you now protect. Of course, you can feel some semblance of camaraderie with the “normies” of your city by living a double life. You know, put on some non perscription glasses, use a ridiculous (and poorly thought out) fake voice. There are several ways and try to fit in. But you must remember that as you gain fame as a do-gooder, your enemies will start to look for chinks in your armor. One of the most common weaknesses many superheroes share is letting “normies” get too close. A smart enemy will put all of his effort into exploiting this.
…which leads me to my next point…
Now don’t misunderstand me this is certainly not on purpose, but like it or not every single hero who has had any amount of success has unwittingly placed a huge target squarely on the backs of any person they love. Even mild acquaintances run the risk of heavy involvement with people they wouldn’t dream of meeting. In some cases just being a civilian in close proximity to a Hero can have dire consequences. Villainous foes, consumed with greed or rage, will use any means necessary to gain the upper hand. It is a Hero’s test to choose between the needs of the many and the needs of the few. To place her own feelings aside, make the right choice and save the day which is not always possible. This is a tricky situation as some Villains don’t actually care about the outcome. Sometimes our Hero finds herself in a no win situation because some men…
…Some men just want to watch the world burn…
So maybe you’re still feeling pretty confident that you can handle whatever the superhero path throws your way. You’re thinking you can do it all. But let me assure you… YOU CANNOT SAVE EVERYONE! You’re only one person and even with light speed you can’t possibly be present for every crime happening in your city. Someday you will be faced with a puzzle you cant solve and the clock will run out. At this point you will have made the best decision you can, but it won’t be the “right” one in the eyes of the very people you’re trying to protect. Thus begins your descent into disgrace as you take on the stigma the anti-hero. The people, who once championed you, will expectorate at the very mention of your name and you will be brought low. They will cry out for an end to vigilante justice and like sheep, be led to their own destruction and you will be helpless to stop them. Will you even want to? This is a dark time in a Hero’s journey.
Life is hard for a Hero. So before you quit your day job and resolve to bring evil to it’s knees, you should consider what you may encounter on your quest. It is not for the faint of heart. Can you handle it?