Book Chapter

Introducing the Superhero Body

W Haslem, Elizabeth MacFarlane, Sarah Richardson

Superhero Bodies: Identity, Materiality, Transformation | Routledge | Published : 2019


In the two mediums where superheroes “live” most of their time – comics and lm – the body of the character is at its most visible, and its most malleable. In theatre and dance, the body of the performer is xed to its deliberate limitation of time and space, and xed, for the most part, to the natural laws of gravity, motion, and matter. In prose, while bodies may be described and “present” in the narrative, they are rarely repetitively and indelibly linked to characters – instead, we often come to know written characters through their minds. In comics and lm, mediums which both began their lives under clouds of distrust and derision, the superhero’s body may deantly perform impossible acts, m..

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