Sunday, February 2, 2014

Grouping heroes based on origins

 I was recently involved in a discussion over at Comic Book Plus about Golden Age superheroes who were attached to a supernatural origin- coming back from the dead or being given power from a ghost, demon or angel for examples. It got me thinking about other origins and I began to come up with categories for them.

 1) And the Geek Shall inherit the Earth! (Science and tech geeks.) Whether intentionally trying to develop a device or if it is the happy accident of an experiment gone awry, a lot of heroes get their powers via this method. Plastic Man and Daredevil were bathed in chemicals, Captain America, Power Nelson and Luke Cage received "treatments" that made them into heroes, and Hour Man and Black Terror were part of a group that whipped up their own ingestible power concoctions. Others, like Iron Man, Deathlok and Cyborg were the direct result of technological advancements or necessities.

2)BabyI was born this way! Aliens like Superman and Martian Manhunter join earthlings like the X-Men and mythical characters like Wonder Woman and Thor in this origin set. They simply are this way- no flight suit or vitamins needed.

3) Very Superstitious. (Magic and Supernatural.) Characters who have trained in mystic arts like Dr. Strange and Zatanna fall into here with other characters "chosen", blessed or cursed with their new found abilities. Deadman, Etrigan, the Spectre and Capt. Marvel join this group along with characters who receive the "power cosmic" like Beta-Ray Bill and the Silver Surfer.

4) They have Mad Skillz! The most dangerous of all because this group isn't super-powered and so they get underestimated. These are the people who have trained a lifetime to be the best at doing damage. Folks like the Punisher, Black Widow, the original Daredevil and the original Atom. An argument could be made for Batman, unless you place him in the science and tech group.