The Makings of a Superhero: A Case Study – Superman (1978)
Image from here.
Also known as: The Optimist’s 14 Rules To Live By To Be The Most Super Human You Can Be.
1. Humility is key – even if it leads to a certain kind of humili-ation. Superman was in charge of the football equipment when he could have thrown those teenage footballers clear off the field. Also, it’s okay to pretend to faint in front of Lois Lane when, in fact, you just literally caught a bullet that could have killed her with your bare hands. Some insight: you will get her to faint soon enough. ;)
2. Respect your elders; they are wise. Especially those that pat you on the back and call you “son”. Because when you break Rule #1, you better believe the truly wise are going to call you out, son.
3. Follow the voices in your head, even if they are eerie and come out of nowhere. They might lead you to uncover the key to your unique (read: bizarre, weird) gifts. This rule is also known as: “Believe in the impossible” & “Don’t question the hologram.”
4. Abandon all you know with only one word directing this rash decision. In Superman’s case, that one word is “North”. While the word can be replaced by your own single word of guidance, there is a way to check its applicability in this rule. The respected-elder who calls you “son” will support your journey. If this is the case, follow that word. You do need to broaden your horizons and learn what cloth you’re cut from (if it’s one with a big “S” on it, I can help with that).
5. Don’t regret seemingly blank, boring times in your life that are not even worth documenting. They are leading up to the climax of the movie; trust me, I’ve seen it.
6. Don’t be ashamed of Rule #2. It’s quite impressive in this world.
7. Be appreciative of the little things unabashedly. There is nothing wrong in saying things like “Gosh, it was kind of swell,” even if “there are very few people left in the world who feel comfortable saying that word.”
8. Take the extra step and trust your instincts about where you need to change your clothes. That extra time you spend doing something right is not a waste.
9. An oldie but a goodie from the Wiccan Rede : If “it harm none, do what ye will.” Let the burglar nearly sob and think himself plunging to his certain death, only for you to save him at the last moment. He probably learned his lesson.
10. Stick to your mission, despite being called names like “big blue bird with red boots” and “it.” People will see for whom you truly are as long as you continue your pursuit of truth and justice (See Rule #13).
11. Be ready to take your clothes off at any time for anything at all times. This may mean being uncomfortably warm under layers and layers of clothes and might contribute to your reason to live in New York as opposed to California.
12. Smoking is not cool. You can care about other people’s health.
13. Do not tell lies. A person in search of truth and justice (See Rule #10) would be a terrible kind of hypocrite if he lied. Loophole: you can simply omit the truth in dire situations like preserving your true identity.
14. And of course, go to the ends of the Earth (which may turn out to be simple the flaming, boiling core of the Earth) to save the world.