Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Create your own Hero.... Just add water.

I wonder what our individual concept of a “hero” says about us? I mean, If you ask some one to create a hero... not one that has, like a Mother Teresa or a Audie Murphy, existed, but one created from their imagination, would any two peoples “hero’s” be alike?

I guess for the exercise I’d put the stipulation that the hero must exist in a “Fantasy” setting, not historical, not Science Fiction and does not live in the Modern world. No other restrictions, they need not be human, even bipedal or have a spine.

My hero... I believe... would be human, a man who shows the miles of travels and the hardship of his adventures in the weariness of his eyes. He would have just returned from a crusade or campaign that few others had, one that tested his beliefs to the core of his being. Even in the hardest of circumstances he would have comported himself to his simple Moral code when abandoning it would have been the easiest path. My hero would have conquered great hardships to return to his simple life, A farm or mill, where he would try to forget about his past, locking away his weapons in a attic like he trys to lock away the memories in the darkest recesses of his mind.

He would be a swordsman of unparalleled ability, but his style would be simple no waisted motions, the method of a man who has learned his art from the battles he has fought and not from teachers who have not.

The hero would not be knowledgeable in refine learning, but a genius in the now useless skills learned by years living on the edge of the razor, perhaps even mocked for not knowing the latest fashions or song.

He would go on his quest reluctantly, but it is through the completion of his quest that he would redeem some portion of his soul that was all but lost before... his reward would not be treasure, not be magic... but inner peace and when offered power he would refuse.

There are so many types of heroes in the history of the planet, I imagine some go in and out of vogue as the years pass and sensibilities change. Why do some people like one type and others another?

Now this is just off the cuff, perhaps all this sort of thing says about a person is that they have a over active imagination or perhaps it says something about the person they wish they could be, I certainly don’t know I am just wondering out loud but take a moment and think, what type of Hero would you Create and why?

1 comment:

aravan said...

Wow. I feel like I could go in a million different directons on this one. The dwarven craftsman, whose love is the shaping of metal, forced to acknowledge the dwindling of his race as his home is overrun by the rapidly multiplying hordes fighting for the same space, and reluctantly changing his smithing hammer into a warrior's bludgeon, knowing that his fight is futile but determined to make them pay regardless.

Or maybe the elven warrior, ageless, sitting alone in a glade that millenia ago was the bustling center of life and joy of his people, but whose time has passed them by, and the lone warrior who stayed behind to keep the memory alive and the land unspoilt. A helper to those in need, an implacable foe to those who mean ill, the graceful and beautiful reminder of a time when the gods walked among Men and the world was young.

Yeah, I think I could pretty much go on all day.

I guess, in the end, for me it isn't so much about the race - although, like you, I tend to pick an older, world-weary human male, like Aragorn - as the attitude and purpose. Weary of the world and its burdens, he nonetheless shoulders those burdens when needed. He doesn't have the world's greatest skills, but what he does have is the brutal determination to see everything to the end. His moral compass is troubled, since the world isn't black and white, but he strives to do what he believes is right at any cost. He's been used by the world, betrayed, beaten down, spit upon, but every day he rises up and weathers the storm. He's cynical, possibly sarcastic, but too trusting, as he yearns to believe, even when he knows he can't. He could also easily be a she.

I think I tend toward the hopeless and tragic, it seems. It's easy to be a hero when you are born with the greatest wizardly power and have countless benefactors there to guide you along. Heroes are defined by their strength of will, not spells or swordarms. At least in my book.

Oh, and they always look cool, even in their farmer-gear.