1. DarkPen14

    DarkPen14 Florida Man in Training Contributor

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    Idiot Superhero

    Discussion in 'Plot Development' started by DarkPen14, Feb 5, 2019.

    So, I'm writing a story about a college kid who develops a superpower in a shooting. His superpower is that he can survive almost anything, but that's the full extent of his inhuman abilities. He heals and can survive conditions that would normally kill a human. But he's not the sharpest knife in the drawer. He's the kid that's on his X-box when he's supposed to be studying, and the guy who makes his gadgets is his neighbor who makes stuff in his garage, so his tech is always breaking down.

    I'm wondering what kind of plot points or gags I can pull out of that.
     
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  2. John Calligan

    John Calligan Contributor Contributor

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    I see a vivisection coming.

    Also:

    [​IMG]
     
  3. DarkPen14

    DarkPen14 Florida Man in Training Contributor

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    Good point... his ability to survive pretty much anything short of being torn to pieces would be valuable to anyone making an army of super soldiers...
     
  4. Fallow

    Fallow Banned

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    You might check out the Claire Benedict character in Heroes (TV). She's a heal-anything highschool cheerleader.
     
  5. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    The Tick?
     
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  6. Cogito

    Cogito Former Mod, Retired Supporter Contributor

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    That's Claire Bennet.
     
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  7. Cephus

    Cephus Contributor Contributor

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    That's what I was thinking. Invulnerable but not too bright.
     
  8. Thorn Cylenchar

    Thorn Cylenchar Senior Member

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    Honestly, I hate these type of superheroes. Where is the fun with some moron who can take a bazooka to the face and go 'huh?'. You say he can survive almost anything. What is the almost? Make that part of his experience. Let him get cocky and think he is invincible. Then take him down HARD.
     
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  9. DarkPen14

    DarkPen14 Florida Man in Training Contributor

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    Yes, that is exactly what I was thinking. But he's not invulnerable. His power is that he can survive, but he is not immune. He can still be incapacitated by his injuries or drugs or stuff like that, and while his threshold for what he CAN survive is definitely higher than any normal human, if you were to shove a grenade down his throat he'd blow up all the same. He can be killed and seriously messed up, it's just really hard in comparison to the bank teller the bad guy just shot.
     
  10. Hammer

    Hammer Moderator Staff Supporter Contributor

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    The honest answer is none. What you have created is a character - plot points revolve around a story (or, rather, a story revolves around a plot...)

    Most writer's begin story and plot planning with the words "what if". You have started the process with "what if superman was a cretin", but you need to go further - what if... the nazis won the second world war... aliens came to make friends and decided that we were too stupid so went away again... scientists got Artificial Intelligence working so well that they had to create Artificial Stupidity to counter it (like Govt. now ha, ha) and your super-clutz became a hero...
     
  11. DarkPen14

    DarkPen14 Florida Man in Training Contributor

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    I have a basic plot, but the issue I'm having is what kind of funny stuff could happen. His grapnel gun breaks mid chase and he just watches it sail away. Middle of a bank robbery and a chunk of his armor falls off for no reason, the guy who makes his gadgets says something like "How come it's always the white guy who gets superpowers?", stuff like that for comedic purposes
     
  12. Laughing Rabbit

    Laughing Rabbit Active Member

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    How are his reading or listening comprehension skills? He could hear that a crime is occurring at location A, but misread a sign or misunderstand directions and end up at location B instead and either miss helping stop the crime or arriving late and barely stopping it, by some lucky fluke.
     
  13. DarkPen14

    DarkPen14 Florida Man in Training Contributor

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    He's a moron who plays video games all the time. He's not that bright and common sense is a flower that doesn't grow in his garden. He can navigate, he's just not that capable if it's outside a five block radius of his house without a map.
     
  14. LadyErica

    LadyErica Active Member

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    Just throwing my two cents out there. I love superheroes, and especially the ones from DC. That said, two of my least favorite DC superheroes are Batman and Superman, and for the same reason: They are just too powerful. Superman can survive just about anything, except kryptonite and magic. And even then, he always finds a way out.

    Batman used to be great, but in the last few years, he's pretty much become as powerful as Superman himself. Physically, he's still a human, and quite mortal. I think. But the stories makes him the smartest man on the planet, and enough gadgets to destroy even Superman with ease. We only need to look at the movie Batman v Superman to see how far Batman has come towards being a godlike superhero. Normally, Superman should have squashed him like a bug in less than 10 seconds. Instead, Batman keeps not only holding his own against him, but also winning most of the time. It's ridiculous.

    To me, a good superhero needs to have two things. A believeable weakness, and a great villain. I need to be abel to relate to the characters. Superman and Batman are just too strong, so I can't relate to them. But if we look at their female counterparts, Batgirl and Supergirl, they are far more relatable and "human". Batgirl got herself shot, but instead of making a quick recovery, she spent many years in a wheelchair. Supergirl is just as strong as Superman, but unlike him, she hasn't grown up on Earth, and she often find herself as "not quite Superman", if that makes sense. When Superman isn't around, she'll have to do. And she does get the job done, but it's also easy to picture how it must feel to always live in the shadow of her cousin. She has never really been allowed to create an identity of her own. She's just... Superman's cousin.

    So for TC's story, I'm fine with the MC being near invulnerable. But he has to have weaknesses too, other than being stupid. For that matter, if he was so stupid, how is he even creating gadgets? And why is he creating gadgets? What does he need them for? I think if I were to write a story with a character like that, I would focus on how he feels when he learns about his powers (scared? proud? happy? sad? embarrassed?), and them let him try to do the superhero thing. Or supervillain thing, maybe? I mean, if he's a bit stupid and enjoys the simple life, why wouldn't he try to use the powers to steal? When the cops come after him, what are they going to do? Beat him? Shoot him? He's invulnerable. Maybe the whole superhero thing comes later?

    Plus, is he the first (and only?) superhero around? If so, how does the world feel about him? Think about real life. If you saw a guy that's literally invulnerable, how would you feel? Like if a guy got run over by a truck, and the truck is the only thing that got damaged, how would that make you feel? Most people would be scared. People are sadly afraid of the unknown, and it doesn't really get more unknown than real superheroes. So if Superman showed up for real, I would think most people would hate him instantly. Not because of who he is, but because they are scared. We only have to look at each other to see it for real. People often hate people with a different skin color or religion, but I think a lot of this have to do with not knowing. If we could do a better job at educating people about this stuff, a lot of it would go away. But if we can't tolerate each other as human beings, how would we possibly tolerate a superhero?
     
  15. DarkPen14

    DarkPen14 Florida Man in Training Contributor

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    Well, the best way I can explain him without giving too much away is;

    His power revolves around survival. He can survive conditions or injuries that would normally kill or incapacitate a human, such as in toxic gases or with severe injuries. But he is not immune to damage, if you were to inflict injuries severely enough that he could not compensate, than he would be basically on the same level as anyone else. He's hard to kill, but that's the extent of his abilities.

    As for the gadgets, he's not the one making them. His neighbor is, and his neighbor makes them in his garage, so they're always breaking down or not working properly. It's basically a low-budget Mr. Fox situation there.

    I'm not gonna give away all the details for my own story security, but essentially he's what happens when the guy who plays too many video games finds out he's got a superpower. He's not stupid in the traditional stereotypical jock sense, he's just not that bright. Looking back at the basic concept, it is sorta like a low budget Batman comedy, but under different principles.
     

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