Tag Archive: tony stark


Rise of the Anti-hero

People have been fascinated with heroes since the dawn of time. The Greeks and Romans had their pantheon of heroes, as did the Celts and Native Americans (among others). Often those heroes represented a perfect ideal, the ultimate vision of our human potential. Usually this meant a hero free of flaws–a one dimensional 1950’s boy scout who loves his mother, is ind to animals, and helps old ladies across the street. A worthy image yes, but terribly boring and unrealistic.

Enter the Anti-hero.

The anti-hero often lacks grace along with a few other desirable qualities (like tact or sobriety). They represent a less than perfect ideal, a more realistic picture of a hero who may not do everything right–despite their good intentions, who may not have a handle on his personal life, and who deals with other issues such as unemployment. The anti-hero finds a soft spot in heart because even though they screw up most of the time they come through when it matters most. They are also more interesting to watch (because you really aren’t sure if they’re going to come through) and are more dynamic than the perfect superman, which means they can actually grow and change.

I’m sure we all have our favorite anti-hero. McClane from Die Hard, Tony Stark as Iron Man, Hellboy–the list goes on and on. I fall into this category. I know I’m not perfect. I’m a little messy, have a temper, and I don’t always react the way I should in certain situations, but I like to think that when it matters most I come through. So I may not be a 1950’s Girl Scout–at least I’m not boring!

So here’s to the anti-hero. May you not destroy more than you create, may yo always come through in a crunch, and may you please work on the relationships that matter most

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Why do superheroes need to wear masks? Typically masks are a symbol of shame, but often the hero chooses to wear a mask in order to protect his or her identity. It is that need to wear a mask–that fear of being known and putting yourself and loved ones in danger–that keeps most from ever attempting a superhero life. Very few ever own their superhero status. Tony Stark felt no shame or fear when he said “I am Ironman,” but most superheroes find it difficult to tell even the people closest to them that they are indeed a hero in disguise.

Fighting crime incognito wouldn’t be such a big deal if it didn’t make things hard for the hero. How many dates did Peter Parker miss? How hard was it for Bruce Wayne to keep a girl? Why did no one ever figure out that Clark Kent and Superman were never in the same place at the same time (wrong post–another question for another time). Of course there is always the alternative–a laundry list of villains who not only know who you are, but where you live, work, and who you care about most. It’s sad that heroes have to wear masks, and it’s sad that we live in a world where we need heroes at all but I am glad heroes do exist. Hopefully one day more will be able to live in plain sight.

Here’s to a world full of people willing to proclaim “I choose to be a Hero!”