We all love superheroes, those urban vigilantes we see in comic books and cartoons and comics that beat on the bad guys and save the day. Whether you like Batman or Iron Man or Ichigo or Shegs Okoro, this article will teach you the basic steps in creating your own superhero.
- Pick your superhero’s inspiration: This is the centre of your superhero. The idea or person he/she is based on. Common examples include The Flash who is based on the Greek god Hermes, Thor who is based on the Norse god by the same name, Aquaman who is based on the Greek god Poseidon. So if you want you can base yours on Amadioha or Sango or even base them on yourself.
- Pick a contemporary social influence: Creating a superhero is all well and good, but what is your superhero’s function i.e., what is he trying to fight against or for? Captain America fought Hydra and the Nazis during the Second World War, Batman is trying to save his city Gotham from crime and ruin, the Green Lantern Corps protect the galaxies from evil. So what will your superhero fight for or against? Will your superhero fight Boko Haram or the corrupt politicians or will your superhero be an advocate for women’s rights?
- Choose your superhero’s superpowers: Undoubtedly one of the most important aspects when creating your superhero; you will need to arm him or her with superpowers to battle this social influence. If your superhero is based on a pre-existing god, you can always mirror their powers. For instance, if your superhero is based on the Yoruba Thunder deity Sango, then your superhero would undoubtedly control thunder (and be able to spit fire).
If you superhero is being created from scratch, you need to give him/her powers that would help them in their quest: telekinesis, invulnerability, super-strength, teleportation, pyrokinesis, you pick, the only limit you have is your imagination.
- Choose your superhero’s weakness: Now that you have picked your superhero’s superpowers and hopefully have made them awesome, the next thing you need to do is pick their super-weakness (Did you know that Superman as a comic book character didn’t have any weakness for almost forty years before Kryptonite was introduced?). Every superhero has their weakness: Superman and Kryptonite, Thor and his love for his brother Loki, Spiderman and his impulsiveness, Ironman and his ego, Wolverine and Magneto (ok that doesn’t really count).
Again if you’re basing your superhero on a god, you can use the god’s weakness. For instance if your hero is based on Sango again, you can make the hero’s weakness to be women. If it is based on someone like Samson, you can make his weakness his hair. Based on Achilles, I’m sure you can guess.
- Choose your superhero’s name and origin story: Now that you know their inspiration and superpowers, it is time to tell us just how they got those superpowers. Superman is an alien whose power comes from absorbing the radiation from the sun, Spiderman got bitten by a radioactive spider, Naruto has a fox demon trapped inside him, Batman trained with Raz-al-ghul and the legendary League of Assassins. After creating your origin story, pick a name for your superhero and voila, he’s alive!
- Pick your superhero’s alter ego: Well your superhero can’t be superheroing all the time, they need an alter ego so they can lead normal lives from time to time. The Batman is a billionaire philanthropist named Bruce Wayne, Spiderman is a wimpy Journalist named Peter Parker, Superman is also a reporter and is named Clark Kent. So when you have picked your superhero name and inspiration and origin story, don’t forget to create their alter egos.
- Create your super villain: For every ying there must be a yang; for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction; the fundamental law of superheroing: there must be a villain. Someone who is hell-bent to stop them from achieving their goals or someone who is making their life much harder or someone deliberately foiling their plans. Batman has The Joker, Superman has Lex Luthor, Spiderman has The Green Goblin, the Flash has the Reverse Flash, Thor has Loki and the list goes on.
When you have settled these seven steps, your superhero is ready to soar!
We hope this article has helped you create your very own superhero and we hope to hear about them sometime. As for me I have mine and he is called The Voice (or Dare Nwachukwu).
If you’re interested in learning more about superheroes, you can take the course The Rise of Superheroes and their Impact on Pop Culture on www.edx.org (I finished it last month and have my certificate).
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