Video Games, Classics, and Real Life Heroes
A hero is usually a normal human being or a major fictional character who, against odds and without any special power, combats insurmountable adversity by sheer courage, ingenuity, or exceptional skill. Just like other previously solely gender- Specific terms, hero is also frequently used to describe any gender, although hero usually only refers to men. The hero’s bravery and the challenges that he faces to do what is right usually bring about changes for the better for those involved. They are usually depicted as white and good, although not always; sometimes they are not. The most famous heroes in history are Superman, Batman, and The Hulk; and these three have created an enduring appeal among readers.
What makes a hero? Experts and researchers differ on this, with some believing that there is no singular defining hero, but rather several different types of heroes depending on the situation. Others believe that heroes have characteristics shared by many other individuals. Still, others feel that there is a distinct difference between a hero and a villain, and that a hero is someone who uses their personal risk to protect others, while a villain uses their power to harm others.
Some researchers think that the key to being a hero comes from the ability to tap into a personal sense of hero-ness. This is why some people are drawn to be a fighter, and why others are drawn to be a teacher. Being a fighter or a teacher requires courage because doing what is necessary to protect oneself is invariably a significant risk. As well, the ability to use “humanity” makes one an ideal candidate for heroic acts. Doing what is right and sacrificing personal safety are essential traits to hero-hood.
One part of being a hero includes having a sense of immortality. In movies and television, including comic books, it is possible to see heroic characters undergo various stages of aging. While in real life most humans live for a good number of years, heroes can frequently go on to fight off attacks from villains who have been immortalized within the pages of history. It would be difficult to find examples of characters in whom this has not happened, and very few characters in which a hero will ever go bald or turn black. In games where a hero has to save the world, time travel is used, and sometimes alternate versions of the same character have to travel back in time to stop an impending threat. In the case of video games, the hero can literally go back in time and perform heroic acts multiple times in a game.
Another component to being a hero involves using one’s courage to overcome adversity. In the case of the mythical Persian king Achilles, those who played him role were brave enough to endure being chained to a rock while his enemy forced him to ravish his enemies. These characters are classic examples of how courage can be used in fiction. It is also important to remember that many ancient heroes like Achilles did not have a clear origin story, so many of their attributes are subject to interpretation.
In a similar vein, classical heroes like Oedipus were not exactly ‘simple’ in the sense of being simple. He, too, was born with a physical deformity, but he lived and died doing what he believed to be right – fighting dangerous opponents and terrifying enemies. He did not run off to join an army and expect to be awarded a hero’s prize. Rather, he earned his right to live by facing and overcoming hardship and adversity.