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    Default Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    In the discussion of what would make a good superhero movie some people mentioned comming up with original characters instead of just combing through 50 year old american comics. While I am intrigued by the concept, I am not a fan of the comics myself and just can't find any merit in the tropes and cliches of the genre.

    But what alternatives do we have that could also be called superheroes and supervillains that are not connected to the two big american comic universes?

    The first thing that came to my mind is Buffy the Vampire Slayer. She has super strength and super endurance and beats up superhuman monsters with martial arts. Most other characters with supernatural powers are wizards or demons, but I think Buffy herself pretty much applies. Without costume or secret identity.

    Another thing would be all the villains and most heroes from the Metal Gear Solid series. In fact both groups are pretty much interchangeable as lots of characters are on different sides at different times and for some times there are even multiple factions that are not that clear cut. While one power of one character is explicitly revealed to be technological, there are still psychics, one guy who can turn invisible, one who can photosynthezise sunlight through moss growing in his skin, one who can deflect bullets and defuse grenades with her mind, two guys who can shot lightning, a ghost, and a guy who can control a swarm of bees, without the help of gadgets.
    Those would clearly apply as well, but these powers are not the real subject of the games, which are in fact all about a completly un-supernatural political conspiracy.

    There's probably also a lot of Anime that would also apply. Akira perhaps?
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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Luke Cage would probably count. I mean yeah, briefly he went as Power Man, and wore an outfit, but from what I remember he is just himself, Luke Cage, Hero for Hire. Yeah, he runs it as a business. I admit I dont read his comics so I dunno if or how its changed, or even if he still exists as an active hero. But from the sound of it, he isnt exactly your standard hero type.
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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Speaking of live-action film based on Akira, there was such a Hollywood project, but that got shut down at the beginning of this year.

    Not that I would have high hopes for a Hollywood adaptation of Akira, anyway...

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Quote Originally Posted by Somewhere View Post
    Speaking of live-action film based on Akira, there was such a Hollywood project, but that got shut down at the beginning of this year.

    Not that I would have high hopes for a Hollywood adaptation of Akira, anyway...

    http://www.cracked.com/blog/the-actu...han-you-think/
    That's... if that was the actual script it, was more ridiculously Americanised1 than Happy Harry' skit when he did that; and the latter was intentionally silly!



    1Where Americanised in this context means "what some complete idiot in marketing who has probably never met a real person in the street thinks Americanised is, because he thinks the punters have the IQ of a watermelon."

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Worm, an ongoing web serial, has a variety of non-standard supers. The title character can control bugs, and (sort of) sense what they sense.
    http://parahumans.wordpress.com/

    So does Legion of Nothing, also ongoing.
    http://inmydaydreams.com/

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    Nextwave.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    But what alternatives do we have that could also be called superheroes and supervillains that are not connected to the two big american comic universes?
    gee I wonder...

    In Image Universe we have:
    * Invincible
    * the Astounding Wolf-Man
    * Tech-Jacket
    * Brit
    * Noble Causes
    * Dynamo 5
    * Supreme (Alan Moore's run was pretty good)
    * Youngblood (again, mostly Alan Moore)
    * Cyberforce
    * Hunter/Killer
    8 Science Dog
    * Many Rob Liefeld's creation reinvented by various indie creators like Glory or Prophet or Bloodstrike (which I think was a genius from from Rob to give them to other people)
    * Avengeline
    * Angelus
    * Magdalena
    * Haunt (don't know if he's part of image universe, with image it's hard to tell)
    * Witchblade, who, in fact, had her own TV series and a movie
    * Darkness, who, in fact, has two video games
    * Savage Dragon, who had animated tv series
    * Spawn, who has animated tv series, a movie and a video game

    Aside entire Image Universe, there also are many others, standalone superhero series:
    * Hero-Squared: After the destruction of his Universe last two survivors, superhero and supervilianess, flee to another, where there are no capes and their counterparts are normal people. Hialaruity ensures. (Boom! Studios)
    * I Hate Gallant Girl - 3 issues miniseries about young superheroine that stuggles agains society that cares more about how superheoines look than what they can do. (Image Comics)
    * Strange Talent of Luther Strode - very dark and very brutal story of a man who finds a way to grant himself amazing strength, only to become a target of mysterious man called Libralian, story combining elements of standard superhero and slasher horror, sequel is in works (Image Comics)
    * Irredeemable - Superman-esque superhro turns evil, now everybody struggle to save the world from his wrath (Boom! Studios)
    ** Incorruptible - In a wake of his fromer arch-nemesis rampage world's most dangerous supervilian has an epithany and decides to change his way.
    * Black Summer - brutal story from one and only Warren Ellis: How far are superheroes allowed to go in fighting evil? What happens if one of them kills president of USA? (Avatar Press)
    * No hero - another brutal story from Warren Ellis, this time exploring how much people could give to become superheroes, even their own humanity.
    * Supergod - last of Warren Ellis' thematic trilogy, this time showing us what would be the consequences of superheroes being completely inhuman.

    tl;dr: there a loads of supeheroes outside Marvel and DC. A lot of them could make good movie.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Cole McGrath from InFamous (PS3)

    He has super powers (strength, endurance and electricity manipulation) but doesn't wear tights. He is called by some guy in television "The Lightning Bolt Man" but that doesn't stick. Everyone knows his identity and they just call him Cole.

    He's living in "New York" (Empire City) but it's quarintined, gangs have taken the streets and no one gets out. At first he's just trying to escape the city but ends up working with a secret agent. She will get him out if he finds what she is looking for.

    After that, there are two paths: Either conquer the city in a reign of terror or help the citizens to get things back to normal. Either way, they are fighting for the fate of city...

    And...
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    the device that gave Cole his powers...
    And...
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    The fate of the future itself.


    Edit: Brick from Borderlands and Nathan Drake from Uncharted might also count. Brick has super rage and Nate has super luck. Both have also the power of super violence.
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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    While inside of the DC universe technically, the Sandman comics have little to do with superhero tropes.

    Gerard Way's Umbrella Academy comics would make an interesting movie.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    I think that since Yora mentioned she doesn't like normal superhero tropes, independent comic books that draw on those too heavily (like Invincible, Irredeemable, Incorruptible) aren't going to work for her either.

    Neither will the otherwise excellent book "Soon I Will Be Invincible".

    Perhaps French and Belgian comic books such as Blacksad (anthropomorphic noir) which I've personally read and which is awesome.

    Lanfeust might have gotten English publications from DC, and it seems to be an ongoing adventure in a fantasy world where everyone has a single supernatural power.

    There's Metabarons, scifi supersoldier epic spanning generations, there's Thorgal, Conan-esque low-fantasy adventures, there's Valérian and Laureline, which might have inspired Star Wars back then, Rork is about the crime-fighting adventures of a wizard, and so on.

    There are lots of comics, the problem is in finding versions you understand. Well, at least for me. :D

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Also, off the top of my head: Empowered, the shadow(radio, books, film and comic), the spider(radio, books, film and comics), Zot, Superfolks (book), Cyborg 009 (shows and comic), Kamen Rider Spirits, Kamen Rider (Show and Comic), Skull Man (Comic, show isn't at all superhero), Powers, Judgement Day, Hero (novel), Wild Cards (novel series), some seasons of Sentai (show only), Kikaider (Shows and comic), The Phantom (comics and movies and books). The Rocketeer (comics and film).


    Most of these break from the traditional superhero in at least a couple ways. Some only because they predate it.


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    Last edited by turkishproverb; 2012-12-02 at 03:52 AM.
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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Animorphs :I

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    Quote Originally Posted by turkishproverb View Post
    Kamen Rider Spirits, Kamen Rider (Show and Comic)
    I'm wondering why you think Kamen Rider's don't count as standard super heroes.

    They're dudes with either super science or magic in spandex suits fighting outlandishly colourful villains every saturday morning, with all their advertising billing them as Super Heroes in plain english, which is quite a feat considering that everything else has to be in japanese.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    By western standards, the fact they kill 90% of their opponents makes them non-standard on it's own. Hence why the Shadow and The Spider were on the list.
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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Lucky Luke is a superhero. So is Asterix. Going back, most mythologic/legendary characters were superheroic (from Gilgamesh all the way to Robin Hood). Also Sherlock Holmes, Conan and Zorro were literally the first "modern" superheroes (who incidentally solidified the smart, strong and skilled heroic archetypes we all know).

    The fact that they're not portrayed with traditional superhero trappings doesn't make them any less super-heroic. Also every action hero ever (and FPS protagonists too) are superhuman to the point you can argue them being superheroes (or supervillains) in civilian clothing.

    The fact that "superhero movies" seem to only comb through DC and Marvel archives only proves that Hollywood is utterly unimaginative. Add in that such movies require bajillions of monies for special effects and you get films that only play it safe and use only the most famous of "superheroes". Unless the recent success of Marvel movies changes that (it just might), we'll continue to only see more reboots of Batman and Spiderman.
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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Wasn't there even a Captain India?

    And a few asian movies that are all but superhuman in their casts capabilities?

    There was even a couple of movies about a family of superhumans though i don't remember the name but I believe that was also indian in origin?

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    That Indian movie in which a super-robot is fighting an army of his copies might also qualify as a superhero movie. If Iron Man and Batman can be superheroes, than a super-robot could qualify as well.
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    Quote Originally Posted by turkishproverb View Post
    By western standards, the fact they kill 90% of their opponents makes them non-standard on it's own. Hence why the Shadow and The Spider were on the list.
    Their enemies are outright monsters, so it doesn't count. I mean, even Batman makes exception to his rule when he has to fight things that are completley mindless killing machines.

    Even then, Riders do tend to help any monsters they can, even if most are beyond help. I mean, if I remember right the original rider managed to bring back a bunch of transformed victims early on. Drake and Sasword both tried to save enemy Worm who looked like they might be turned, but that always went sideways. Double's enemies always survived, or at least didn't die from injuries he inflicted in every occasion I remember, and Fourze/Meteor didn't kill anybody either. OOO's enemies were never anything but mindless disposable drones and science experiments gone wrong except the last boss.

    I mean, Kabuto stopped a bank robbery without killing anyone once, so it's not like they kill out of choice so much as necessity.


    You MIGHT make a case for riders I haven't seen, but the way you're phrasing it comes off as very different from the reality. Rider villains tend to be worse off mentally than even the Joker, since the Joker at least spent most of his life as a regular joe and presumably might be cured one day with the right help.

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    I think that since Yora mentioned she doesn't like normal superhero tropes, independent comic books that draw on those too heavily (like Invincible, Irredeemable, Incorruptible) aren't going to work for her either.
    All things mentioned in this thread draw heavily on superhero tropes. it cannot be a superhero, even in a board sense, without drawing on those tropes. What the story does with them is where the "non-standard" part coms in. Invincible loves turning standard superhero tropes around and both Irredeemable and Incorruptible love making especially cruel twists. Both Noble Causes and Dynamo 5 are about exploring all problems of superhero family. Luther Strode is mixing superhero tropes with slasher horror tropes. I Hate Galant Girl is dealing with hypocrisy prevalent in genre's treatment of women. Warren Ellis' comics are deconstructing relationship between superheroes and their humanity - all tropes present in standard superhero are still there, just the heroes are too human, not enough human or completely inhuman, leading to terrible consequences.

    By western standards, the fact they kill 90% of their opponents makes them non-standard on it's own.
    Because Superheroes never kill...

    Some more nonstandard superhero comics:

    * Hack/Slash - another superhero/slasher horror mix. Cassie Hack and strong, deformed guy called Vlad travel the world and hunt Slashers - people who returned to life as, well, slasher horror vilians.
    * Gladstone's School For World's Conquerors - It's about secret school for supervilian's children. I seen only panels fro mthat but it looks like pretty adorable comics. I mean, seriously. Seriously
    * Planetary - It's a book from Wildstorm Universe, by Warren Ellis. Planetary, the archeologists of unknown, explore the world's secret history, that is in many ways refferencing thing that were infulential for creating superhero genre. Planetary are nto superheros in standard way they have superpowers, but they don't deal that much with superhero battles, rather trying to discover lost knowledge and use it to improve the world. Probably one of my favorite comics.
    Last edited by Man on Fire; 2012-12-02 at 07:34 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Man on Fire View Post
    All things mentioned in this thread draw heavily on superhero tropes. it cannot be a superhero, even in a board sense, without drawing on those tropes. What the story does with them is where the "non-standard" part coms in. Invincible loves turning standard superhero tropes around and both Irredeemable and Incorruptible love making especially cruel twists.
    Yora mentions she doesn't like standard superhero tropes.

    Her own examples were Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Metal Gear Solid. She explicitly mentions things like: no secret identity, no costumes, powers might exist but they shouldn't be what it is about.

    Irredeemable and Incorruptible take the standard superhero tropes and do different stuff with it.
    Buffy does standard superhero stuff without the tropes.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    I'm pretty sure the main superhero tropes Animorphs has are the extraordinary powers, and the secret identities (which are eventually stripped anyway). They kill people all the time, they don't wear costumes... I don't know, what are the other standard superhero tropes?

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    Quote Originally Posted by endoperez View Post
    Yora mentions she doesn't like standard superhero tropes.

    Her own examples were Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Metal Gear Solid. She explicitly mentions things like: no secret identity, no costumes, powers might exist but they shouldn't be what it is about.

    Irredeemable and Incorruptible take the standard superhero tropes and do different stuff with it.
    Buffy does standard superhero stuff without the tropes.
    Except that Buffy does superhero tropes.There are many traditional superheroes without secred idientities (Luke Cage) or very poorly guarded ones (Jay Garrick). She has rogues gallery, she goes to acadey of adventure just like Spider-Man and many teenage superheroes. There is a crosover cosmology related to legendary creatures, just like in many superhero stories. There are alternate universes...Yeah, buffy uses handful of superhero tropes.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    No particularly strong opinions on the matter, but I'd like to point out that just because there are exceptions doesn't mean they're not standard tropes or anything. Luke Cage and Jay Garrick not having secret identities doesn't change the fact that a secret identity is a superhero trope that Buffy doesn't have, and the mere fact that those superheroes don't have that specific trope doesn't mean they're not still standard superheroes.

    (...who's Jay Garrick?)
    Last edited by Serpentine; 2012-12-02 at 11:12 AM.

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    There's an entire genre of television shows, a few comic books from publishers other than the Big Two, a book here and there, and probably even video games and such, that are cropping up these days which revolve around nonstandard sorts of superheroes. In particular I've noticed a genre of "eruption" stories - ones which revolve around a single incident which creates a small number of empowered individuals, often with a tie among them such as a place they were all at or a power that they all have. Some examples of what I'm talking about:

    * Heroes, obviously, and to a lesser extent several other series such as The 4400 which were obviously meant to be riffs on the popularity of Heroes when it was big. Bunches of people all get powers (in the case of 4400 they all obtain them from the same source), but they remain the people they always were, and are no more inclined to go out and do superhero stuff than their personality indicates (obviously Hiro on "Heroes" would be one case in which it very much does so, but even he doesn't put on a costume).

    * J. Michael Stracinski's "Rising Stars". He's done more explicitly superhero stuff, but this is a story very much in the vein of 4400, where a singular incident touches a small group of people and turns them into powered individuals.

    * Several Anime feature the idea that each person has their own unique special abilities; examples include MyHIME and JoJo's Bizarre Adventure. In many cases this is presented as if it was just ordinary life in that particular universe, or something that a certain subset of the population has always been capable of.

    * Piers Anthony's "Xanth" series is similar, in that everyone is capable of casting a single magic spell, never the same one for any two people.

    * More obscurely, many television shows feature a protagonist with a single unusual ability of the sort that a superhero might have, but this ability (possessed by that one person and perhaps a few others) is usually the only one referenced. Examples include Tru Calling and The Ghost Whisperer, in which the protagonist can speak to the dead and try to right injustices relating to their death (Tru travels back in time to try and prevent the death; I'm less clear on the premise of TGW but I'd presume it's a more straightforward case of talking to ghosts).

    I'm sure there's lots more; it's really a matter of how inclusive you want to be with your definitions.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Oh, shoot! What's the name of that movie? Came out recently... A superhero movie shot Cloverfield style...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serpentine View Post
    Oh, shoot! What's the name of that movie? Came out recently... A superhero movie shot Cloverfield style...
    Chronicles.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Man on Fire View Post
    Except that Buffy does superhero tropes.There are many traditional superheroes without secred idientities (Luke Cage) or very poorly guarded ones (Jay Garrick). She has rogues gallery, she goes to acadey of adventure just like Spider-Man and many teenage superheroes.
    Wait, Spiderman goes to school? I thought he had had a full-time job since the 1980s or something.

    Any way, I'm not that knowledgeable about superheroes, but if there are other superhero books that do it without capes and secret identities, perhaps you should post them?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Serpentine View Post
    No particularly strong opinions on the matter, but I'd like to point out that just because there are exceptions doesn't mean they're not standard tropes or anything. Luke Cage and Jay Garrick not having secret identities doesn't change the fact that a secret identity is a superhero trope that Buffy doesn't have, and the mere fact that those superheroes don't have that specific trope doesn't mean they're not still standard superheroes.

    (...who's Jay Garrick?)
    My point wasn't that Jy Garrick or Luke Cage aren't standard superheroes. My point was that just because Buffy doesn't have a secet idientity, doesn't mean she's nonstandard superhero - several standard superheroes don't have one. Hell, Iron Man don't have one, everybody knows he's Tony Stark and it was so for many years. Lack of secret idientity isn't enough to say she doesn't use superhero tropes, because it's basically a superhero trope on itself. There is even a trope for not having a costume - Not Wearing Tights.

    And Jay Garrick was first flash - easy to spot, he was always running around in WWI helmet with mercury's wings and with no mask.

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    I'd just look at all the British comics from 50 years ago instead--they're definitely not quite like American superheroes. My favourite is Dolmann, who was basically a guy who built a load of miniature robots to fight crime for him...however, he did insist on using his powers of ventriloquism to give them voices, and since this meant he was mostly talking to *himself*, you have to realise the guy probably had more loose screws than even Batman!

    More info on him:

    http://internationalhero.co.uk/d/dolmann.htm

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    Default Re: Non-standard "Super Heroes"

    Quote Originally Posted by endoperez View Post
    Wait, Spiderman goes to school? I thought he had had a full-time job since the 1980s or something.

    Any way, I'm not that knowledgeable about superheroes, but if there are other superhero books that do it without capes and secret identities, perhaps you should post them?
    It depends on which spiderman. The cartoon spiderman series that was I think back in the 90s had him as a college student who did freelance photography to make ends meet.
    "Interdum feror cupidine partium magnarum Europae vincendarum"
    Translation: "Sometimes I get this urge to conquer large parts of Europe."

    Quote Originally Posted by Nerd-o-rama View Post
    Traab is yelling everything that I'm thinking already.
    "If you don't get those cameras out of my face, I'm gonna go 8.6 on the Richter scale with gastric emissions that'll clear this room."

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