As I put together this list of characters, I had to decide what kind of list this would be. I knew it would not be a countdown type list. Sometimes it’s hard to do a countdown and rank something. It’s hard to quantifiably say this character is better than this character. At different times in my life different characters have meant different things. What was important to me in high school is typically less important to me now. A few characters still mean the same to me, and some characters mean a lot to me now, but for different reasons than when I was a kid. Today’s character fits in that category- he meant a lot to me when I was younger and means a lot to me now, but for totally different reasons.
I consider myself a DC guy more than a Marvel guy. Yet, my first two comics characters are Marvel. Cap is the ultimate hero. Spider-Man is the ultimate regular guy hero. He has been a round since the 60s, and has become Marvel’s most iconic hero, yet he still seems to be figuring everything out. He has been an Avenger, part of the Fantastic Four, helped out the X-Men, but he can’t get his personal life together.
I think this has leant itself to the enduring nature of the character. We have seen him in six stand a lone films now. Pretty amazing, since the first one was in 2002. We have seen two different ultimate versions in the comics, one from the future, a couple of clone versions, a version inhabited by the soul of Dr. Octopus, and countless alternate universe versions. My favorite is still plain, old Peter Parker.
It sounds weird when people say they can identify with a particular superhero. How does one identify with a bring who can do amazing things that are really impossible, or someone who is so rich they can buy their way into being a hero? But, that’s only looking at the surface. What I identify with is the characteristics of these costumed heroes. For example, Spider-Man to me is just a regular guy who finds himself in way over his head and has to do the best he can, while often falling short. He takes his failures personally, and wears them around his conscience like chains around his neck. He carries the whole wight of the world on his shoulders, while constantly feeling like he is not good enough or he can’t make it.
The great thing about Spider, though, is that he never gives up. Part of him knows he doesn’t belong in the big leagues, like he is doing more than he should be able to. Part of him knows that the odds are stacked hopelessly against him. He doesn’t stop, though. Some how, he pushes through all of that and comes out on top more often than he doesn’t. Sometimes, I feel the same way. I look around my own life and wonder how I’m going to make it. I feel overwhelmed and out of my league. During those times, I try to be like Spider-Man and find a way to push through it, to do more than I should be able and somehow make it through to the other side. That’s why I love Spider-Man.
30 Days 30 Characters Series
Did you happen to miss one of our previous days? You can check out the rest of the posts in this series by clicking on the links below. Check them all out and don’t forget to share this with your friends. Make sure to follow me on social media as each day is revealed. You can find me on Instagram and twitter @thegeekymormon. You can also follow the hashtag #30Days30Characters.