Superman, Spider Man, Batman, superheroes now have almost equal importance and popularity as Robin Hood, Cinderella or Little Red Riding Hood. We’re not talking only about the classic superheros, but also abouth children’s heroes in general like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Pokémon, Harry Poter…Superheroes first became popular through comics and now they seem to be evrywhere: in films, on television shows, in computer games, their characters can be seen on clothes, toys ……. In a word, they have become part of children’s culture, and adults are not immune to their popularity and splendour also. In some ways, the stories of superheroes are similar to those form fairytales, myths adn legends. It always comes to the fight between good and evil, finding identity and self realization. The main hero is also usually an orphan who possesses special talents and power by which he or she overcomes various difficulties and achieves great things, not just for themsleves, but also for all humanity.
The difference between mythology and fairy tales on one hand and superheroes from comicbooks on the other is mainly in the fact that fairytale characters are from the past and live in ”once upon a time” lands and superheroes are from the future or the present and/or from the outer space or parallel universe. A gift from God or magic are generally replaced by science and technology. Superheroes usually have dual identities: one everyday and ordinary, and one with superpowers. When they are dressed in their costumes with their special masks or their capes or something similar, they became extraordinary, gain powers, or can exhibit them freely without being recognized. They can wear a mask and a special sign on their chest that serves as a symbol of power. The mask is critical because it tells about a secret identity, considering that often a superheroe leads a double life. Other important characters are their mentors and allies.
Kids love to wear masks to imitate superheroes and fight bad guys, using imaginary superpowers. Role playing helps them develop creativity and imagination, which involves cognitive development. Thus the stories of superheroes have an educational function for children’s ethical development. Because superhero puts the needs of others before their own, and because he or she is dedicated to the struggle against injustice. He or she is brave and act in accordance with the moral code. Self-confident and always ready to confront obstacles and enemies. Children learn from super heroes that we all have strengths and weaknesses. Despite the apparent strength Hulk, for example, must learn to control his anger. Role playing where a child is sometimes a hero and sometimes a villain helps him or her to better understand the difference between good and bad and to gain insight from both perspectives.