I mean aside from there are not actually super speedsters or flying tanks or people with the proportional strength of ants or spiders, there’s one thing that’s totally unrealistic. I’m 64 years old, and aside from the three times I was hit with trucks, I have never been in a situation where a super power would have been useful. I’ve never foiled a robbery, or any other kind of crime. I mean I’ve been a victim of crime, but it never happened directly to me. Crimes always happened while I was somewhere else, never directly in front of me. Closest I’ve been to a crime was when an armed robber came into my store and bought a pack of Pall Malls and left, with police spotting him on store surveillance tapes the next day.
Seriously, an armed robber who was later convicted of murdering a store clerk like me, changed his mind about murdering and left my store after he saw me.
But in comic books and cartoons and big-budget movies, the heroes are constantly catching low-level street crooks between titanic battles against other supers. Batman does it all the time. Superman, not so much but there are constant bank robberies to be thwarted, and even Squirrel Girl talked a few bank robbers into giving themselves up. The number of bank robberies I’ve seen not on TV or in a comic? Zilch. Number of other street-level crimes I’ve seen IRL? Zilch. Number of babies I’ve delivered that weren’t mine? Zilch. I’m not saying it doesn’t happen, it’s just that the odds of it happening repeatedly to one person are so minute as to be Powerball unlikely.
And that’s all I have to say today.
And I keep thinking as I read about the lower-powered heroes, “I’ve done that (or that happened to me a couple of times)”. I even made a page on the site about it, my history is that of a low-power super. I have survived things that would have killed most people, several times. Since everyone knows supers are just fantasy wish-fulfilment I kept telling myself I had extraordinary luck, not superpowers. The first two times I walked away from getting hit by trucks I tried to come up with a plausible story (hit me with both feet in the air, the frame was eaten away by rust) that just made it look like I was just very lucky, not a super.
Even in the face of undeniable evidence of superpowers (2001-08-31) I maintained for years I was “lucky”. And the recovery was in the super level as well, I used to joke that I was an IRL Wolverine because of how fast I healed from injuries.
So, anyway, I’m reading the ninth book in the Wearing the Cape series Joyeux Guard and the POV of the story bounces all over the place but in the part I’m reading now the narrator is a human (Base) Journo writing a story about the new Super team that’s the same name as the title of the book. I’m just a tick over halfway through the book but I felt compelled to write for some reason as the journo gets caught in a terror attack on a refugee camp in Khazakstan and uses a taser with a setting called “dinosaur” to distract a high-level super from attacking the good guys in Joyeux Guard while helping protect refugee kids. Basically her taser is just powerful enough to distract Super Baddie from continuing his attack on the MC of the series (even though she’s barely even in some of the books like Bite Me).
And now I’ve had less than 4 hours of sleep in the last 36, and I’m on fumes, literally. I’m going to turn off my music player, put this post to bed, and then put myself in bed.