Why are we so obsessed with the idea of superheroes?

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Superheroes are everywhere these days. Sure, not literally, but it seems like most new films and TV shows coming out at the moment are all about these crime-fighting heroes. From Hollywood blockbusters like the Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy, to the Netflix originals Jessica Jones and Daredevil, fans of the genre have so much to watch these days. Why is that though? What is it about superheroes that has so many of us obsessed?

Political turmoil

The world isn’t in a great place right now. No matter where you live, there’s something bad going on around you. Global warming, political corruption, terrorism – a lot is going wrong. Part of the reason why superheroes are so attractive to us at the moment is that they provide an escape. While nothing positive seems to be changing in the real world, it’s nice to see a difference being made in TV and film. We wish that these superheroes could burst out of the screen and make everything right, but for now, just watching them is enough. The escape from reality may only be brief, but we’ll take what we can get.

Personal reflection

If you had the chance to be a superhero, would you turn it down? The likely answer is no, because most of us would relish having powers that no-one else has. Superheros are essentially better versions of ourselves, and so it’s natural to want to be in their shoes. Life would certainly be easier if we had power or resources that could solve our problems and allow us to do a little good in the world. Despite usually being of an otherworldly nature, these superheroes also have something about them that makes them human and relatable. That makes us feel as though we have a connection to them, even if they’re just characters on a screen.

Good wins out

Superhero stories are almost always about the battle between good and evil, with the former coming out on top. No matter how many times this basic storyline is repeated, it never gets old for us. We love seeing the hero that we’ve been following for the last few hours succeed in their mission and save the world. The hero’s journey is something that’s been prevalent in fiction for as long as there have been stories. It’s become a part of our culture, and where better to see it than in a superhero film?

They save us

Have you ever been bullied? It’s something that’s unfortunately common throughout America (and the rest of the world), and it’s not just restricted to the playground. Many people still face bullying when at work, from both colleagues and people in charge, and it can leave you feeling worthless. Luckily, superheroes are there to save us from it all. Going back to the idea of escapism, the superheroes in all these films, TV shows and comics are there defending people like us. They protect the vulnerable and the innocent, and make everything right again in the world. Even if there’s no-one in the real world coming to our aid, superheroes can make us feel as though there’s still someone looking out for us.

The superhero genre continues to grow in popularity, and we doubt that trend will stop anytime soon. We’ll always have a soft spot for those heroes, especially if things in the real world fail to improve. Producers know this, which is why every year we’re getting bigger and better films for us to enjoy. You won’t catch us complaining about that.

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