Debate and Discussion

THE SOUL OF THE HERO
LIFELINE COMICS at 3:41PM, Jan. 31, 2014
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IS THE HERO SELFISH OR SELFLESS?
Is the hero selfish or selfless?
El Cid at 6:13PM, Feb. 1, 2014
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what
irrevenant at 11:50PM, Feb. 1, 2014
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I'm not sure if you're asking about the heroes of our specific comics, or about heroes in general.  Either way, it's an excellent question.

With regard to heroes in general, I don't believe the two necessarily conflict.

Let's take for example Superman, perhaps the most heroic of heroes.  He would give (and has given) his life for others.  And unlike, say, Batman who has a clear focus for his obsession (make criminals pay for what happened to his family), Superman was just brought up to be a good, decent bloke.  I suspect this may be why he's a harder character for people to get their heads around and empathise with than Batman - he just doesn't have that obvious ‘hook’.

Selfishness is about focussing on your own needs.  Superman's need is to be a good person, someone his parents would be proud to have raised.  He just wouldn't feel good about himself if he didn't live up to the moral code they instilled in him.  With the power he has he can't not help people - he couldn't live with himself if he did.  So he's ultimately helping people for selfish reasons.  Does that make him less of a hero?  Of course not!  The fact that his selfish reasons drive him to help others is what makes him a hero!

Perhaps unsurprisingly, I take the same position with the hero of my comic, Chaos.  Like Superman, he was raised by good people and does good because it makes him feel good.  He also thrives on challenge - he feels most alive when pushing his capablities to their limits and being a hero lets him do that.
last edited on Feb. 10, 2014 12:16AM
CornTown at 2:23PM, Feb. 3, 2014
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I personally enjoy reading and writing about selfish heros more because selfishness is a major flaw. Flawed characters are easier to relate to.

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