This is part of a series this week about Superheroes. Check out the previous parts of the series if you haven’t already read them:
Part 0: Be a Superhero
Part 1: Superhero 1 – Batman
Part 2: Superhero 2 – Spiderman
Part 3: Superhero 3 – The Green Lantern
Part 4: Superhero 4 – Superman
Today, I’ll be writing about the superhero team, the X-Men. The X-Men are a team of superheroes who don’t really need any introduction, I think, so I’ll go straight into it.
The first thing is something that’s been mentioned a lot, but I think it’s still worth pointing out. The X-Men are a diverse team, with people of different powers and from different backgrounds. But they all come together for one cause, and it’s the variety of powers that set them apart. Individually they may not be great. But as a team, they are.
That’s the first lesson we can learn from them, obvious, but important nonetheless. Teamwork is very powerful. Even as superheroes, finding a team that compliments you can exponentially increase your effectiveness. Even the superheroes I mentioned in previous posts didn’t always stand alone, they are part of the Justice League and groups like that. Superman has worked with Batman on numerous occasions. Teamwork is a very powerful force, and we have to learn to leverage that.
Secondly, the X-Men are trained by Professor X to control their powers. Take Cyclops, for example. When he first joined, Professor X developed special glasses that helped him to control the blasts from his eyes. There are a lot of other examples. But the common theme is there. One of the first things the X-Men are trained in is how to control and use their powers effectively. And that’s the second lesson we can learn. That powers are all well and good. But we need to learn how to control them – when to hold back, when to go all out, how far to go, etc.
There’s third thing I want to point out. Uncanny X-Men writer Chris Claremont said in 1982 that “The X-Men are hated, feared and despised collectively by humanity for no other reason than that they are mutants.” They are different from everyone else, and they are despised by everyone because of that. And yet, they work to save the very people who despise them. And that’s a third lesson we can learn, I think. That as a superhero, sometimes you are different, and you might be despised because of the difference. But as a superhero, there are times you have to work save those who despise you.
So, today’s recap.
Lesson 1: You don’t need special skills to be a superhero, you just need to make the most of what you do have. (from Batman)
Lesson 2: Be sensitive to what is going on around you, and respond quickly.
Lesson 3: Make the world’s problems your problems, take personal responsibility for it. (from Spiderman)
Lesson 4: Willpower and imagination are crucial to success.
Lesson 5: Don’t avoid fear. Embrace it and learn to overcome it. (from the Green Lantern)
Lesson 6: Even as you be a superhero, be equally human. The two can, and should, coexist. (from Superman)
And today’s lessons from The X-Men.
Lesson 7: Teamwork is really powerful. It’s really worth it to go out and find a good team, of diverse individuals that complement each other.
Lesson 8: In every thing you do, learn to control your actions. Learn when to hold back, when to take action, and how far to go.
Lesson 9: To be a superhero, you need to be willing to be despised for being different, and even go to lengths to help those who despise you.