December 30, 2008

Real Life Superheroes

From Jesse Thorn over at the Maximum Fun Blog comes this great essay in Rolling Stone on Real Life Superheroes:
Like other real life super-heroes, Master Legend is not an orphan from a distant dying sun or the mutated product of a gamma-ray experiment gone awry. He is not an eccentric billionaire moonlighting as a crime fighter. He is, as he puts it, "just a man hellbent on battling evil." Although Master Legend was one of the first to call himself a Real Life Superhero, in recent years a growing network of similarly homespun caped crusaders has emerged across the country. Some were inspired by 9/11. If malevolent individuals can threaten the world, the argument goes, why can't other individuals step up to save it? "What is Osama bin Laden if not a supervillain, off in his cave, scheming to destroy us?" asks Green Scorpion, a masked avenger in Arizona.
The whole thing is well written and worth a read.  Also worth your time is a perusal of the World Superhero Registry, mentioned in the essay.  When you read this on the disclaimer page you know you have stumbled on to something special:
This website deals with the actual incorporation of the superhero archetype into daily life. As a consequence of the complex and ever-changing nature of the legal system and the diverse and unusual activities that may be involved in such alternative lifestyles, some of the activities described herein may be in conflict with local laws in some areas. None of the creators of this web page specifically condone any of the described activities or the possession of any of the equipment related to those activities. We are not legal experts and lack the expertise and resources to research the legality of any of the practices of our members, or visitors.
The entire site is wonderful, and I mean that, it is sincerely wonderful (if in need of an upgrade) but be sure and check out the registry page to see who might be patrolling in your area.


Pomeroy Kinsey said...

You just made my year with this entry.

a conversationalist said...

That registry is enough to make a guy want to become an arch-enemy, and in this economy, hmmm......