Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Which action hero are you?

In days gone by if you asked me which action hero I wanted to be, I would have said John McClane. I'd have picked John McClane as a role model because in every episode of Die Hard, you know the following about his character:

    * He’s going to see a huge threat before the rest of us do
    * He’s going to jump into action
    * He’s going to get in way over his head
    * He’s going to get scared
    * He’s going to get hurt— hurt bad
    * He will nearly get killed.

But all the while, no matter what goes wrong in for him in the story, here’s what you also know about John McClane:

    * He will not give up. Not ever.
    * He’s will kick the sh*t out of the bad guy.
    * In the end, he will save the building/city/nation/planet.

Nowadays, however, I'm feeling much less ambitious. Less John McClane, perhaps, and more Crazy Cat Lady. I'm already well qualified, with three cats at last count.

Even literary types are getting in on the hero action. You can find action-hero figures of William Shakespeare (armed with quill), Charles Dickens, Edgar Allan Poe, and even a librarian figure. The wordsmith heroes will never take over John McClane's side of the street, but hey, at least they're getting their day in the action figure sun.

Which action hero are you, literary or non?






15 comments:

  1. I am not sure whether to be sad or just applaud your realism for being a woman and picking a male character as the action hero you would most want to be. We just don’t have the role models. Even if you see a female action hero in a movie, for example, chances are the role was originally written for a man (Salt and The Brave One spring to mind). After all, who really wants to be the waitress or the hooker with the heart of gold, or, worse yet, the stay at home supportive wife or girlfriend? Bor-ing! I’m a woman, and my fantasy would be the adventure action with a purpose thrown in for good measure. My action hero fantasy? James Bond. International travel and adventure and stopping the bad guys just in time. Oh, and let’s not forget the , er, intimate action in between, although as a straight woman it’s not Pussy Galor I’m looking for. But if it were…hmmm…. A hot and strong lesbian action spy getting’ lucky and saving the world… There could be a story there but I don’t think you’ll see it on your shelves or at your multiplex anytime soon.

    ReplyDelete
  2. RE: Female action hero--I spent a lot of time as a kid pretending to be the Bionic Woman. Does that count? *-)

    But yes, my ideal action heroes would come in the form of men. Mr. Spock (smart, strong, usually doesn't let his heart get in the way, would sacrifice himself for others) and Marshal Dillon (all the same qualities plus a good 16 inches taller than me! You could literally tower over the world! And he gets to blast people lawfully. LOL!)

    For literary heroes--I'd want to be Nevada in Zane Grey's "Forlorn River" and "Nevada".

    This little exercise could lead to a good psychoanalysis for us all. *-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Catfriend, I almost forgot the one I wanted to be when I was little: Wonder Woman! I even dressed up as her one Halloween. She was kick-ass, and gorgeous, too. BK, I loved Mr. Spock, but I would have preferred to be Captain Kirk. Fire the proton torpedoes! I always wanted to say that.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Since I'm watching Alias DVDs these days, I'd like to have the fighting skills (and figure!) of Sidney Bristow.

    ReplyDelete
  5. As a kid, I played Batman a lot. I was Batman and my cousin was Robin. We always made my younger sister be the villain. But that's what younger siblings are for, right?

    When I grew out of that phase, I wanted to be Nancy Drew. Without Ned, though. He was such a dork!

    If I had to pick a modern day literary hero, it would be Nevada Barr's Anna Pigeon. The problem is I hate bugs, I hate camping, and I definitely need indoor plumbing. Hmm. I might need to rethink this.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Yeah, I'd probably go with John MacLain, too, although perhaps I'm much more like Michael Clayton (egad!), just muddling along trying to figure out what the hell's going on.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Joyce, I wanted to be Nancy Drew too. Got close when I was able to write a few ND's under contract, but that's different than being her, definitely. It was more like being her librarian-type sister.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Love the Willis' "die hard" character as well.
    One other certainty that you could add to his list...as he is way over his head, beat silly and on the cusp of certain death he will be firing smart-ass comments in the face of the poerful mega-bad guy.

    ReplyDelete
  9. As I get older, Walter Brennan would be more my speed, but Vince Flynn's Mitch Rapp would be pretty cool. (Sorry - Not a TV or movie fan)

    ReplyDelete
  10. The Raymond Chandler doll, circa 1945.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I will now show my age. The formative action heroes of my youth were, in no particular order:

    Sergeant Saunders (Vic Morrow) in Combat. He was a zero-BS guy who always came through in a pinch.

    Joe Mannix (Mike Connors). He was a cool dude with a great office, and a phone in his 1968 Dodge Dart GTS convertible. Funny the things you remember.

    Alexander Mundy (Robert Wagner) in It Takes A Thief. The very definition of cool.

    Jim Rockford (James Garner) from the Rockford Files. If you don't know why, then you never saw the program.

    Thomas Magnum (Tom Selleck) in Magnum, PI. He showed heart and attitude while never, in the words of my favorite television commercial, driving off to Namby-pambyland.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Knowing my lifestyle, I would prefer to be an inaction hero, but there aren't any out there to model myself after, unless you would count Nero Wolfe.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Chuck Norris because... well... he's Chuck Norris.

    ReplyDelete
  14. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Ralph Hinkley, Greatest American Hero. That's me. Got super powers but don't know how to use them. Somehow saves the day, but ends up with potted plant broken on my head and garbage stuck to my suit. But still, I'm bullet proof and can fly. Landing? well...

    The real superhero I wanted to be Danger Mouse. Cuz he was so cool with that eye patch, and had Penfold to help him out.

    ReplyDelete