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Superhero Genre- How To Improvise

Superhero"It’s a bird. It’s a plane."
—Superman

Introduction

Stories where one or more humans (or human-like beings) possesses powers or strengths far in excess of those of regular humans (superpowers). They use them (usually) to protect mankind.

Essence

  • Saving the world.
  • Superheroes often have a mild-mannered alter-ego to help hide their identity.
  • Some have lots of gadgets – devices to help them fight crime.
  • A logo is important and is often seen on the chest, cape and gadgets of the superhero.
  • Despite being all powerful, most have an Achilles heel: a weakness that can be exploited. Their love for someone; or a substance or device that can reduce their powers (e.g. Superman and Kryptonite).
  • Nearly all based on Comic-book stories

Characteristics

Where Usually in a huge (often fictitious) city. For example: Gothem City (Batman), Metropolis (Superman) or New York (Spiderman).
Heroes often have a secret place where gadgets are made and stored (e.g. the Batcave).
Supervillains will always have a secret hide-out.
When From 1940s into distant future.
Who Superheroes wear distinctive, usually colorful clothing with capes and underpants over their leggings. Their names mostly reflect or imply their superpowers and usually end in a gender- (or species-)specific noun such as man, woman, boy, girl or mouse. Other forms of superhero names include ending in “o.” The gadgets for man may be prefixed with . For example: Batman has a Batcar, Batcopter and Bat utility belt.
Mild-mannered alter-ego.
Evil supervillain with different powers and often more strength. Villains also have names such as Green Goblin; Joker, Riddler, Penguin, and Catwoman.
Sidekick, often for comic relief.
Love interest who often doesn’t know hero’s true identity.
Nosey reporter or investigator who might find him out.
People who need rescuing, especially women.
With success, comes related heroes to help out or strike out on their own: Batwoman, Superboy.
What Rescuing people (from under rubble), falling, etc; using superpowers; saving the world. Fighting supervillain or whatever he has sent to attack.
There are no limits to the type of superpower. Examples: amazing strength, flying, spinning a web, turning into fire, throwing ice, X-ray vision.
Changing into the superhero from alter ego and vice versa. Often done in an enclosed space like a telephone booth. It can be done by a specific action, e.g. Batman sliding down the pole to the Batcave or Wonder Woman spinning round.
Powers are either inherited (such as from unearthly parents) or developed through some sort of accident, experiment or both, usually involving radiation or a "cosmic force."

Examples (from Amazon)

 
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