|Written by Paul|
|Monday, 09 July 2012 07:41|
It's become more common now for movies about superheroic characters to spend some time showing us what a person does with their newfound powers - not saving the world or fighting bad guys, but just day-to-day. Spiderman did some of that, and Fantastic Four. In fact, the FF comics spent like a page in their first issue with Johnny just reveling in the fact that he could fly. At the time, it was unusual. This is what people mean when they say Marvel comics were "more realistic" - they actually tried to portray people more like real humans, who didn't just take fantastical shit in stride.
This is unabashedly one of my favorite chapters of this novel - I loved writing it, I was looking forward to getting to write it, and I just now teared up a little doing the final edit. I wanted to put this scene in, where Max gets to teach her daughter to fly. That is such a potent metaphor, coming at this stage in Chris' teenaged life, that I can't believe no one has done it before, so I assume somebody has. We've seen people learn they have superhuman powers, but I've never seen a parent get to pass something like this on to a child.
Flight is one of the more 'common' superpowers in fiction, mostly for practical reasons, as you need a way for your heroes to get around in the story. I've personally experienced the kind of hypertrophy that sets in when you have some characters who fly and some who don't, because then you have to explain how so-and-so gets carried by so-and-so and you just throw up your hands and say "Geez, can we just have everyone able to fly? It would be a lot simpler."
But all of this forgets how exhilarating it would be. Humans have dreamt of flight for as long as we have been able to watch the birds and wonder how the hell they do that. We've all had the dreams of flying - of being able to just soar above the ground, looking down on everything, and felt the thump of reality when we wake up and realize it was just a dream. With all the planes and gliders and such we have, flying would seem like a cheap power, but how much would any of us give to have it?