How to be a superhero

Created By: Amy Ma Amy Ma

As comic book hero story-lines are taking over our cinemas, Amy Ma investigates the finer points of what we ordinary humans can learn from our super hero counterparts.

superhero picture
Peter Parker is proof that you can get the grades and the girl.

Look up in the sky! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! No, it’s

Oh, let’s not pretend. We’ve all thought about becoming superheroes at one point or another. Fighting bad guys, hiding out in a secret lair, arriving in a nick of time to save the day- there’s just something irresistible about a mask, cape, and ridiculously colourful spandex that grows tight in all the wrong places.

While the whole world is in a crazy superhero-phase, the release of epic movies such as The Avengers and The Dark Knight Rises only confirms to us that we can’t become superheroes unless we’re packing billions of dollars in our bank account or exposing ourselves to morbid doses of radiation. But what if we can be superheroes in our everyday lives? Perhaps the existing superheroes are trying to teach us the virtues needed to be a hero, and are acting as tutors to help us realise the difference we can make, to ourselves or the world; on a small or large scale. So what exactly are they trying to teach us?

The Hulk

The Art of Self-Control

Sure, he may be a green rage monster that occasionally smashes things and destroys all that’s in his path, but inside, he’s just a man who is trying to control his emotions. There are times when your anger may get the better of you, and that’s understandable, as long as you’re continually working on yourself to express that anger in a positive way. You may not be able to control the environment around you, but you can control yourself and that’s what is most important.

Captain America

Spare a Thought for the Little Guy

Before he was all buff and strong, Captain America was a scrawny kid from Brooklyn who stood up for himself no matter what the consequences. He was brave in his own way, but people tended to overlook him just based on appearance. Don’t judge the shy, quiet guy in your class, because he may have insane courage, be side-splittingly funny, or just be a great person to be around. Say hello, get to know him! He may be the most amazing person you never thought you’d meet.


Love Thy Family

So what if his adopted brother vowed to destroy the planet he loved most and attempted to enslave all of Earth’s inhabitants? Thor still loved him because that’s what families do. No matter how difficult your family is, remember that all relationships have to be worked on. So if you put in some time and effort, you may even grow to love all the quirks that make your family what it is.

Iron Man

The Suit Comes Off

Suit on = Iron Man. Suit off = Tony Stark. No matter how big a show Iron Man puts on, when he goes home, he is Tony Stark and he has to face Tony Stark problems. He may give out a hard exterior, but the interior is man, not machine. Always be who you truly are, because at the end of the day, no matter who you pose to be on the outside, the suit has to come off and you have to face up to yourself.


Nerds Are Totally Cool

Geeky high schooler by day, web-slinging hero by night. I have to admit, Spiderman is my favourite superhero because he shows us that nerds can be cool too. Why is it so important to be one of the mean, popular kids? They may be the stars of high school, but that only lasts six years. If you try hard and study, that attitude lasts the rest of your life. Peter Parker is proof that you can get the grades and the girl. Yeah. It’s pretty epic to be a nerd.


Even the Toughest Guy Occasionally Needs a Hand

With his sinister voice and killer suit, Batman is seen as one of the toughest superheroes around. But that doesn’t mean that he couldn’t use his sidekick Robin every once in a while. No matter how strong you think you may be, sometimes, you do need someone to share the load. Just ask for assistance! There’s always someone willing to give you support. It’s okay to call in help when you need it, if Batman doesn’t let his pride get in the way, then neither should you!


Being a superhero is all about fighting evil, but most importantly, doing good not only for the world but also for yourself. You don’t have to wear a disguise to be a genuinely kind-hearted person and you don’t have to be called “hero” to be the best version of yourself. Perfect superheroes have only good intentions in their hearts and do good all of the time. It’s okay if you can’t be a perfect superhero; just try not to be a villain.

Last reviewed: 16 February, 2014
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