If you are passionate about superheroes and, consequently, of the films and cartoons that involve them as characters, you have definitely been glued to the screen or have stared at the pages of a book, trying to live out their adventures in your own head… as if you were at the centre of the stories! Have you ever asked yourself if these characters actually have a tangible impact on real life? We do, and we cover this in this article.
“Superheroism” in our society
The influence of superheroes in societal uses and trends is referred to as “superheroism“. It’s a very simple concept that includes all the people who stand out for their abilities, courage, and principles which elevate them above everyone else, and people who take responsibility to defend the weaker people. In other words, the principle we should adhere to, in order to bring the concept of “superhero” into our every day lives is the following: the strong should always protects the weak.
We can all be superheroes
The concept of “hero” with superior qualities has long been encapsulated in a comic strip which, since 1978, has also been brought to life on the big screen by film-maker Richard Donner that comic strip is Superman. Superman paved the way for a series of films based on stories which prior to this we had read about in comics or appreciated in animated versions: the Superman trilogy, the work by Tim Burton such as Batman, the subsequent trilogy by Nolan, the X-Men and Spiderman films in the 2000s and, finally, the birth of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
If we think about it, each of those films encapsulates something that goes beyond the feats of those super-characters: we’re talking about what bonds us – the doubts, fears, sacrifices, choices and strong socio-cultural representation of the era these character represent and which affect us all.
We’d need a superhero in flesh and blood…
Although superheroes cannot be used as a measure for the good and bad things that happen in the world, it is also true that an example of idealism and virtue can always be useful to understand which direction to take. Tony Stark (Iron Man) teaches us that there is always a time and way to redeem ourselves, to put right our wrongs and to be better; Steve Rogers (Captain America) tells us it’s important to “strongly believe” in something in order to achieve our goals; Barry Allen (Flash) tells us that being positive in many situations can be a anchor which saves us and enables us to appreciate the difficulties of life as we wait for better days; and to name one more, Bruce Wayne (Batman) encourages us first to accept, then to improve, our darker sides in order to become more rounded and grounded as people.
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