Friday, April 2, 2010

Is Changing Shape Enough?

Q: Can the ability to change into an animal be considered a superpower or do you need something more to be considered a Superhero?

Okay, first up, I am not an expert on Superheroes. ;) I know your basics like Superman, Batman(couldn't turn into a bat), Spiderman(again, no spiders in the house), Wonder Woman... and none of these Supers could take animal form, as far as I know.

The only Supers I think of who turned into something else were the wonder twins..."Wonder twin powers - activate." Yeah, I liked them, but I think they were only on Saturday morning cartoons, so were they really Superheroes even though they could turn into some pretty cool things like airplanes, trains, and boats.

If, in order to be true Superheroes, our shifters needed more powers, what would we give them? The ability to run super fast? My jags run pretty fast already. The ability to fly? A flying cat, hmm that would be a bit odd to see in the sky, besides what if our shifter is a hawk? They'd have the flying thing down pat.

So what then would we give them? The ability to use magic? Is magic a superhero trait? How would they use it? A flick of their tail or a twitch of their whiskers?

See I have lots of questions about this and would love to hear your thoughts on it, plus if you know of a shape shifting Super, please tell me who it is, I'd love to check it out. :)


Pat C. said...

Comic books and superheroes. Now you're on my turf. Let's see how many I can think of.

Beast Boy/Changling of the Teen Titans comes to mind. He can turn into any animal, but they're always green, even the rhinos and elephants. If you've ever seen the cartoon version of TT, he changes into dinosaurs and microbes and has seen every episode of Battle of the Planets about 300 times. That pretty much sums him up. Vixen of the Justice League is an African-American woman who can assume animal form. I'm not a big JLA fan so I don't know that much about her. Over at Marvel, there's Wolfsbane of the New Mutants, who can turn into (gasp) a wolf, as well as a half-wolf, half-human form. I'm sure there are others. These three are off the top of my head.

Bottom line: yes, shifting into an animal is considered a superpower. And before somebody says, "That's not much of a power," consider Batman has no powers at all and is still probably the most dangerous man on the planet. It's not the powers, it's how good you are with them that makes you a hero (or villain?).

A shifter superhero team? That could work. The hawk and the cat would be recon, the snake the infiltrator, the jaguar the muscle and the wolf the alpha leader. The horse would be the mechanic because if the car breaks down, he knows he's next in line as transportation.
If they're going to go the hero route, they'd better figure out what to do with their costumes when they change form. Maybe that's where the magic comes in.

Savanna Kougar said...

Oh, wow... Pat, is the expert here.
It might depend on your perspective about super powers. All my shifters aren't just shifters as far as changing to an animal shape. That wouldn't work because of their worlds, their genetic and cultural heritage.

Hey, what about Wolverine? He's one of my faves. Though, I'm not the avid fan.

Personally, I think it's normal to have paranormal powers, such as telepathy, which occurs often in my books.

Trail, my hero in Stallion, doesn't fly. However, he has phase ability, phasing to an energy form so light he soars through the sky. He can also phase Seneca with him.
However, that ability is one that his race developed over time and has become genetically integrated

Serena Shay said...

Wow, Pat you are the superhero expert! ~heading to the workshop to create a shiny crown of superhero knowledge for Pat! ;)~

Cool, there are many more super shifters than I realized. Oh ho, ho, I agree, Batman is one dangerous and sexy man! ~whew~

Paris said...

Pat is definitely the expert here! I've never thought about my shifters having super powers. As a human I thought being able to shift into an animal was enough power, LOL!