Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Heroes Rebored: Mundane Superheroics at its Best!

Heroes Rebored (D. Arroyo, C. Mangual, and E. Morales) from Writer's Block Productions.

In Kirby City not every superhero is a legend, in a city so overpopulated with costume adventurers its hard for the little guy to catch a break. From the superheros to the supervillains, Heroes Rebored follows the lives of different characters as they struggle with their daily lives.

So says the first page of Heroes Rebored, a slice-of-superhero life book that focuses on fraternal friendship in superheroic society. The story is mostly told in dialogue, action sequences are saved for when its meaningful.

In Issue 1, our Featured Hero is Dynamic Dan, Nicest Man on the Planet.

I'm serious. He spends his time fixing church rooftops, installing other people's stereo systems, picking up mail for old ladies, and yes, seriously, rescuing cats from trees. He's also, despite being possibly biggest boon to humanity in existence, a down-to-earth, relatable, human character. Dan's the hook. He's the guy you empathize with, the one you follow around.

It works because Dan exists. You've met him. You may very well be him. This is the guy at work who does all the little favors for the rest of the office, without ever asking for much in return. He's the guy in the community who spends all of his spare time volunteering.

Instead of spending endless hours fighting villains and gaining glory from it, Dan does actual good. So, naturally, he gets looked down on by the rest of the community as a small-timer. He can tell. We follow Dan as he interacts with his colleagues, and picks up on the little clues they drop. The little things they say and do that tell him their assessment of his value.

It's an unfair assessment, but if I get too much deeper into this I may end up spoiling the story. I hate to give it such a short review, but I'd much rather you read this book yourselves than rely on me for the highlights. I enjoyed it, it's a relaxing (and, yes, heartwarming) afternoon read.

(I have the next issue on order.)


  1. This reminds me of a short story by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn (I can't remember the title) about an old woman who helps everyone out and is taken for granted, and then she dies and rather than appreciating everything she did for them, the people just grumble that she is no longer there to do it.

    Of course, Solzhenitsyn's story was a political allegory, which I'm guessing this probably isn't.

  2. Mari -- Not unless I'm especially dense on this one. It's theme is friendship as I read it.

  3. I haven't read the issue, but reading your comments, I couldn't help but think of Shirley Jackson's "One Ordinary Day, with Peanuts."

  4. It sounds great, exactly what I read Busiek's Astro City for. Doubt I can get my lcs to get this for me; probably have to order it.

    But I think you've tarnished the whole 'saving people's lives' bit part of fighting evil.


  5. I don't know, Kris... It always seemed to me that Busiek was going more for the art than the heart... Specifically, he was going for the artistry and the colder enjoyment of a good story, rather than a heart-warming yarn about a really good man... There was so much of the rest of the world just yap-yap-yapping at Samaritan (who would be the best counterpart for this Dan, from this short description). I look forward to hounding my sister into bringing this comic with her next time I see her so I can spout more about it. :)