Superheroes, regular people, and villains


Fantastic Four Comic Books
Originally uploaded by fantomCEO.

Moomin noticed I was reading his huge compliation of Fantastic Four comic books. I am on issue #2 or #3, which is a plot about “The Moleman” who is sucking all the nuclear power plants in the world underground and who has a cave made of diamonds.

“Wait, Mom, you don’t know about the Fantastic Four?”

“No… I’m reading this for the first time.”

“I have to show you something, I’m going to show you Alicia…”

And he took the book from me, paging through to the middle until he found the exact page where Alicia was introduced. “What are her powers?”

“Powers? She doesn’t have powers. She’s just a daughter. And she’s blind. Her dad is a supervillain, the Puppetmaster, but she doesn’t know it, see?”

“Oh… so… Hmmm.”

“Then, she looks kind of like Invisible Girl, so she is dressed in her costume, to look like her…”

I tried for a while to fathom why he wanted to show me Alicia. Who knows!

I observed genially, to tease him a little, that it would be very strange to find out suddenly that your dad was a supervillain. Rook straightened up from the stove where he was making lunch. “Ahem. Yes. It would be bad if you found out that I – Oh – Whoops!” “DAD!!! STOP BEING SILLY!!” As we discussed our secret laboratory and the possibility that we were superheroes not villains, Moomin left the room in protest. He really hates to have his reality messed with, which I understand, but in this case it was hard to resist.

I enjoy the energetic rollercoaster prose of these comic books… And the fast pace of the plots. There’s a problem? Nuclear power plants sucked underground in French Equatorial Africa? Hey! Let’s jump into our private jet and go investigate! My calculations show that the center of the disturbance comes from… Monster Island! Wait, a menacing goliath reaches its tentacles from the volcano…

It’s so simple and quick. There is a problem and you can find it, or it finds you, and you fight it directly. I love comic books and adventure stories for that reason.

Possibly the way I fight in reality is far too much like Cuchulainn fighting the waves, a possibly noble, but impossible to win, fight that looks like madness to onlookers. Comic book heroes never have that problem.

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