Iron Man 3 is out right now, and Man of Steel and the Wolverine later this year. Sequels to Thor and Captain America are coming up, too — and I’m looking forward to see them all. I am far from being a die-hard comic book fan, but I do love those superhero movies!
My very first superhero crush was Superman. That a man could be so strong amazed me. He could lift huge and heavy objects with ease. And bullets? Not a problem. And best of all, he could fly! Christopher Reeve, to my little girl self, was the perfect male specimen. He was ridiculously handsome and charming, muscular too, but not in that scary, bulky, I-spend-too-much-time-in-the-gym way. And I totally fell for that bumbling shy guy Clark Kent alter-ego. All in all, he was dreamy.
Later on, there was a whole slew of superhero movies to feast on, starting with Michael Keaton as Batman, Tobey Maguire as Spiderman, and (swoon!) Hugh Jackman as Wolverine, and the list goes on. M. Night Shyamalan’s Unbreakable remains one of my favorite films of all time, which gave incredible insights into superhero and villain archetypes and their psyches.
Superheroes are larger-than-life characters that embody the best (and in certain moments, the worst) of very human qualities. They serve as some sort or role models for us normal mortals. Some of them, like the X-men mutants, invite us to discover and embrace our uniqueness. Others, like Spiderman, inspire us to move our focus beyond ourselves and use our gifts for the good of others. And still some, like Batman, give us hope that we can survive our traumas and tragedies, and be all the stronger for them. We see our dilemmas in theirs, and our journeys in their stories.
So, although I don’t think I’ll be collecting any action figures, or buying any life-size models, I get how profoundly some people identify themselves with a particular hero or other, and how much they want these characters represented in their homes. If it comes to that, there are ways that it could actually work, as these images show.
I think one insight into making it work is to resist the urge to cram the superheroes into every single nook and cranny. Restraint is the word. Confining the characters to murals, for example, is a wonderful way to bring in the the big guys and gals and still have a lot of decorating leeway for the rest of the room. Appropriating the color palette of the mural helps pull in the rest of the room so everything is a cohesive whole.
Hanging some comic book art or wall decals works too. I especially like the simplified graphics in this bedroom below.
But if you must go all out, then go for it. But keep the actual logos and figures to a minimum, and go for atmospheric elements that enhance the theme — play with textures and other elements that are related to the hero’s universe. Check out that awesome chest in the image above.
The Batcave above will be a wonderful hideout for wannabe Bruce Waynes out there. And the brick walls below are just the kind that Peter Parkers would love to climb.