The folks at growinguplast had a superhero theme last week but since I’m always running a week behind I just learned about it. Hopefully, they won’t mind a late comment.
As a kid, I loved, loved, loved superheroes. And growing up in the 70s was a perfect time for such an infatuation. I gobbled up every SuperFriends episode I could on Saturday mornings. These mornings were also filled with Isis and Shazam.
I got my superhero fix in the evening, too, by watching shows like The Six Million Dollar Man, The Bionic Woman, Wonder Woman, The Incredible Hulk, and the two 1979 TV movies about Captain America. Heck, I even remember the short-lived show, Tabitha, which featured the kids from Bewitched as adults. And, of course, we can’t forget the TV show, The Greatest American Hero.
Afternoons were spent watching the Adam West version of Batman which was a popular syndicated show in the 70s. I also watched UnderDog in syndication - usually in the morning.
And if those weren’t enough I was also around to see Christopher Reeve appear as Superman in the 1978 movie.
My blog is a tribute to ElectraWoman and DynaGirl, my all time favorite 1970s crime fighting duo. So you could say superheroes have played an important role in my life.
I know comic book purists often criticize the goody-goody superhero depictions of the 1960s, 70s, and 80s, preferring our current-day, darker superhero images. But, I’m so thankful for the happy, lighter superhero images of my youth.
It wasn’t until I was an adult that I realized I enjoyed these shows not because of the character’s super powers but more so because I identified with the characters’ emotional struggles around maintaining a secret identity, a struggle I, too, experienced until I fully came out at 27. Seeing noble, strong, good people who were also plagued with tremendous insecurities about revealing their secret identity helped me cope with the years of loneliness and sadness that often accompany living in the closet.