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Posts Tagged ‘superheroes’

Are you or someone you know currently in possession of superpowers? Are you ready to break out of the box your secret identity has put you in, and fly (or leap, or teleport) free from traditional norms and expectations? Then it is your lucky day!

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Superhero shop sign
Photo by Scott Evans on Unsplash

The Paranormal Challenge is offering a cool quarter of a million dollars US for proof of powers. Supes from all corners of the globe, or universe, are welcome! And the field remains wide open.

Only a handful of the 100 to 150 applicants to the Paranormal Challenge who contact the center each year actually make it to the testing phase…

— Hex Factor: Inside the Group Offering $250,000 for Proof of Superpowers

And that’s not the only such challenge. If you’re ready to come out of the phone booth and face your fans, Wikipedia has a list of current prizes for proof of abilities:

List of prizes for evidence of the paranormal

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Hand holding Spiderman mask.
Photo by Joey Nicotra on Unsplash

Sure, you’ll be outed on a global scale, tasked with defending the world from the forces of evil,* forced to spend your free time cleaning up other people’s messes while being second-guessed by every Tom, Dick, and Trollie on social media, but just think! You’d never have to wait in line again. And I know you’re in this for the good of humanity and all, but the name and likeness rights alone will set up your family for generations to come.

So come on out! The frontline workers, doctors, nurses, police, and other first responders could use a break.** And my mom makes great capes!

Boy wearing bat cape.
My mother made me and my brother amazing satin bat capes for Halloween one year. I know, Batman doesn’t actually have superpowers. Don’t tell 8-year old me that, though.
Photo by Joey Nicotra on Unsplash

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* I mean, you could be evil, I suppose, but that’s only cool in stories. In real life, the trail of broken lives and civilizations has to wear on you after a while. And the insurance premiums! Not that I’m speaking from experience or anything.

Gilded woman of wonder.
Photo by ActionVance on Unsplash

** Also and P.S., if you do have actual super powers, I’m sure I’m not the only one wondering where the heck you’ve been this past year!

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Wait, what?

Yep, that’s the takeaway from a recent Bloomberg article about humans with (very, very) rare genetic mutations:

These Superhumans Are Real and Their DNA Could Be Worth Billions

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the focus of the article is on drug companies exploiting such mutations to develop new blockbuster products, but let’s just take a second to look at the bottom line:

Rare mutations > affect a tiny percent of the human population = superpowers.
/enough said

Yes, it’s Unbreakable all over again, only this time for real. If there’s a way to convert such mutations into useful (rather than simply profitable) innovations, great. Without (hopefully) the evil mastermind willing to sacrifice innocent lives in the search for outliers.

Are there challenges to life as a “superhero”? Of course, the most obvious being the dramatic downsides for those with dangerous mutations like insensitivity to pain, but I have to say: I find this hopeful.

Why? Because it’s a reminder that there is no one “normal” and that the continuum of human evolution isn’t done with us yet, not by a long shot.

That the range of human experience is deep and varied, and that there is room in our world for everyone.

And that the impossible can, under extraordinary circumstances, become possible.

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Wonder Woman movie is finally really actually happening. This article at Tor.com lays out what we know (not much) and how this movie fits with the WB film slate.

Few details are available other than a 2017 release date, so let me leave you with Jill Lepore’s New Yorker piece on everyone’s favorite lasso-toting amazon and this fascinating Smithsonian article on The Surprising Origins of Wonder Woman.

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