How does one create a superhero? Movies such as The Avengers and The Amazing Spider-Man make it look straightforward, if not exactly easy. Hollywood would have us believe superpowers aren’t all that unusual. Perhaps I’m a skeptic, but I sometimes wonder if the difficulties in become superhuman aren’t underestimated just a bit.
After all, you can’t plan for a freak accident. You can’t plan on being bitten by a special arachnid, as was Spider-Man. You can’t plan to accidentally survive a massive dose of gamma radiation, like the Hulk. You can’t plan to be born of Asgard, like Thor. Most of us will never have the opportunity to volunteer for an experimental super-soldier program, as did Captain America.
But what about the self-made superheroes? Those who deliberately transcend their limitations, using technology and (frankly) vast piles of money? Well, as much as I’d like to become Iron Man, I’m not a supergenius billionaire industrialist with massive technological resources at my disposal. What about Batman? I’m out of luck there, too, because I’m not a reclusive borderline-sociopath multi-millionaire with the peak physical conditioning of a dozen Olympic athletes combined. It’s safe to say these paths are closed off to most people.
So what to do if you’re cash-strapped but can’t rely upon serendipity to do the hard work? (more…)