I Need a Hero
by Niki Turner
No, it's me. I'm craving heroes, and the Avengers seem to cover all the bases for four of the basic hero archetypes in literature. At least the ones I found in this amazing syllabus: The Four Types of Heroes/The Hero Archetype.
The Classical Hero (Of royal birth, or half mortal and half god; performs extraordinary feats; noble character; fights for honor and the greater good.)
|Chris Hemsworth as Thor|
In the Avengers, this role is played by Thor. Thor's a demi-god, of course, and that kind of puts him on a different level than the others. I mean, who can compete with a demi-god with a really big hammer and great hair? Seriously, Thor is the unattainable hero, the guy you love but know you can never have, and that's always a bummer, especially in a romance novel. For me, that's a warning as a writer... don't make my heroes TOO perfect. I'd throw Superman in this category as well, but Gina may disagree with me.
|Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America|
The Medieval Hero (Of common birth, good moral character, obedient to authority, follows the rules, wages war on behalf of others, not himself.)
So this would be Captain America, the ultimate "good guy." I mean, he's so good that if he weren't ridiculously cute, he'd be boring. In fact, there's a big chunk of our American superhero culture clad in this particular cape and mask. They're the ones you forgot about while you were drooling over Batman or wishing you were Lois Lane. These guys are just too nice to be hero fare, in my opinion. The love interest for these nice guys is usually a very bad girl (i.e. The Black Widow, for the nice Cap'n). Gotta have some balance, you know.
The Romantic Hero (Birth and class are unimportant, battle is internal/psychological, he makes his own rules, his passions are outside of individual control and he is often moody, isolated, and introspective, his loyalty is to a project or community of like-minded others.)
I think the Hulk/Dr. Bruce Banner belongs here. As would Wolverine and probably Spiderman. This is the the tortured, tormented hero seeking to come to terms with himself. He's a little hard to get to know, a little hard to read, and impossible to keep in shirts. He could actually be a threat, but the right heroine will see through the danger and offer him unconditional love.
|Mark Ruffalo as Dr. Bruce Banner/Hulk|
The Modern Hero/Antihero (Seeks merely to survive in a dark world and find meaning; code of behavior, not a code of ethics; might be as "bad" as the villain; his internal struggle is often with addiction to something, external struggle is with corruption.)
|Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark/Iron Man in Iron Man 3|
Who is your favorite superhero and why?
Does he match up with your favorite type of literary hero?
Niki Turner is a writer, former pastor's wife, mother of four, and grandmother of two. She has thus far been unsuccessful at coming up with catchy taglines for her writing, her purpose in life, or what she hopes to achieve in the future. Suggestions are welcome.