HBO, makers of wonderful television, has produced a documentary on one of my favourite topics. Real Life Super Heroes. They’ve profiled members of the RLSH community in TV form.
I continue my fascination with the sort of psychological make up that leads people to don spandex, leather, and bulletproof vests to patrol the streets as super heroes. This article has done nothing to convince me to put an end to such fascination, but nor does it make me think the heroes in question are even remotely sane.
Here is Phoenix Jones. I’ve posted about him before. He’s still alive, which is possibly miraculous.
This story covers a meeting of Real Life Superheroes in Washington around Comic Con. It is pretty amazing stuff.
I haven’t seen Kick-Ass yet. But real life vigilante Super Heroes are pretty cool in a “don’t try this at home,” “what you’re doing is illegal and stupid” kind of way. You’ll find a bunch of Real Life Super Hero posts around these parts (check the tag below). Here’s a story about a little posse of heroes that covers the basic elements for your gang. If you do want to start one. Which you shouldn’t.
Z is the enforcer. His bedroom just has weights, a punching bag, and a mattress.
Victim is the gadget man. He’s based out of town so operates a bit like Q from the Bond movies – shipping in gadgets and technology and scientifically tested armour.
Zimmer is the medic. He also wears a blindingly bright light, Iron Man style, as part of his costume. He uses it to stun would be assailants.
Tsaf is the group’s girl power. Her name is “fast” backwards.
Lucid is extra muscle.
Lucy the kitten is their animal mascot
They wear costumes:
“Z sits down and begins strapping on his full body armor, a homemade medley of leather, pads and stainless steel bits and pieces, which he describes as a “poor man’s Iron Man suit.” The suit includes boots, leg, knee and ankle pads. A pair of arm bracers he made out of leather and steel are attached to his arms with truck ties and work as both defense and offense. To complete the look, he wears a black Predator-type mask sure to creep out anyone who sees it on the street. He then puts on his “butcher mail,” a stab-proof apron of metal scales over a lightweight bulletproof vest, which he then covers with a sleeveless, brownleather zip-up.”
Functional costumes – no aesthetic but impractical spandex.
“Everything I wear is either protective gear or to blend in during plainclothes patrols, with gear underneath. No spandex. Ever,” Z explains. “If I ever wear spandex, I deserve to get shot down in the street like the dumbass that I am.”
By night they patrol the streets – essentially hoping to entrap bad people into doing bad things in their presence.
“The strategy is that Z will skate ahead on a longboard, a sturdy, fast skateboard made for cruising. The longboard is also a good excuse to be wearing a lot of protective gear. Next in the lineup is the bait (described as the “nucleus” of the patrol)—usually TSAF or Zimmer. In tonight’s case, TSAF wears a white dress, purple eye makeup and is carrying a bulky purse. She tries to lure predators looking for someone vulnerable. Zimmer follows on foot about a block behind her.
Lucid, if he were here, would act as a runner, skating back and forth on his longboard between the group members as they move forward. TSAF watches for Z; Zimmer watches for TSAF; and Lucid would be watching everyone. Communication is vital: All parties are connected by cell phone, ready to leap into action if anything happens.”