In part two of my look at how comic book hero’s have affected out lives I ask two friends of mine Paul Terry @BKPlayground and Aaron James Henderson-Smith AKA @Angry_Oz_Geek that question. How has comic books and those hero’s of these books affect them.
First up Paul Terry:
The first comic book character I remember really wanting to be was Angel from the original X Men, their book was my favourite when I was very young and I loved the idea of being able to fly so much that I wished I was him.
When I got a bit older and moved to High School, life got a bit tougher – there was bullying and violence (it wasn’t a great school and not the one I chose to go to), I started reading 2000AD instead of super hero comics, mainly because they were so damn hard to find in the small town I grew up in.
At this point, Judge Dredd had the biggest impact on me because of his unwavering sense of justice, his black and white vision of right and wrong and of course his (often amusing to be fair) violent brand of enforcing the law. I wished I could be more like him because I could see so many people around me that deserved a daystick to the mouth but I did adopt his principles of right and wrong.
When I left school and got a job, I found a shop that sold DC and Marvel comics so I started picking up Batman titles, I wasn’t really a fan of “super powers” (except maybe Green Lantern, because that COULD happen) and so I liked Batman because he’d learned how to do what he does and in could be within my grasp…if I applied myself, which I was never going to!
The first issue of Batman I picked up was actually part one of Death In The Family and it was a lot more grown up than the Marvel comics I used to read, it led me to finding The Dark Knight Returns and from the moment I saw Batman’s overnight war on crime when he first returns to the cowl, I was hooked.
From that point to this very day my favorite character is Batman because of his dedication, selflessness, intelligence and, to be honest, I like the way he enjoys showing the other major “super heroes” how much better them them he is. What appeals to me most is how he makes criminals scared of him and deep down I just love how cool he looks when drawn properly, who wouldn’t want to be Batman!
So, the answer to John’s question is.. Batman has had the biggest effect on my life, he’s inspired me to make decisions over the last 25 years that changed the course of my life and made me a better person for it.
Angry Oz Geek
Wolverine: trying to be like him as a little kid growing up and getting my ass handed to me despite it… also Cyclops as well. He was responsible for my neurotic “I’ll never be as good as Wolverine” deal, and focus on leadership and driving myself to be as good as he is, but using what I had. Plus I got the girl.. (Jean Grey is why I have a BIG thing for redheads: ironic really – my wife is Asian…).
As an adult? I guess the one I identify most with is Magneto – his sense of justice and the necessity to accept the mantle of a demon sometimes to liberate, and see TRUE long lasting, justice met.. and the OTHER is Jesse Custer from “Preacher”. I agree with him 100% that SOMEBODY needs to make god accountable for what he’s done, AND more importantly kick his ass. That book proves my belief that god exists purely for his own amusement (cruel as it is), and the afterlife: paradise? to have ANYTHING to do it. The last thing we need is for that mass-murdering, creation neglecting, ego maniacal, piece of shit tyrant to have ANYTHING to do it. In fact, most of my morality echoes Jesse Custer.
Do you have a comic book character of book that has shaped you knowingly or not?