The Hero’s Journey – 1 – Like Tears in Rain

Prometheus201211My family despairs of me. They see my bookshelf, half full of graphic novels, the opened Marvel encyclopedia on my hall table, the sketch pad full of concept art of dubious quality sitting next to my computer, the models of V and other characters of evidently geeky origins scattered around the flat.

They don’t say it, but I can see the tally marks of adult judgement going on behind their eyes. When will he grow up? When will he put away childish things?

Hell, it makes my taste for accumulating guitars look positively mature in their eyes.

How can I justify being just as, if not MORE SO into things they would dismiss as childish, frivolous and silly despite now being a married, home-owning, working, tax paying thirty-something?

That answer will take more than one article to deliver, so ill break it up into pieces.

The first reason, is breadth of experience.

You see, I believe that as a fan of ‘geeky’ stuff (comics, computer games, anime, fantasy & science fiction and last but certainly NOT least, actual science and history – it’s all one to me) my mind ranges farther than those who’s life experience is limited to only that which they actually experience first hand.

That sounds pretentious, even arrogant, I know but the value of imagination, of being able to conceive of a ‘what if’ and pursue that line of thought, even when common sense and real world concerns make the very thought ‘a waste’ cannot be overestimated.

That instinct is why I’m typing this on a touch screen wireless device with which I can access information and communicate with people across the planet. That instinct is why we know the planet is round rather than believing it is flat. That instinct is why we currently have a handful of robots pottering about on the surface of another world.

That instinct, that desire… is to wonder, to question, to hope, to dream.

The modern world we live in, which relies so much on the fruits and achievements of dreamers and wonderers is curiously dismissive of the trait, unless it can be immediately harnessed into practical uses (remember your career advice in high school?)

The abstract setting of comics allows people who wonder to pass comment on and propose ideas that would be deeply controversial in a ‘conventional’ setting. Sometimes making it bright and adding capes & cowls is just a way to slip some of the most adult stories imaginable past our supposedly more mature censors.

Sometimes, I feel sorry for folks who see Match of the Day or the Voice as the entertainment highlight of their week. Don’t ever let them tell you you’re immature or silly.

That leads me onto a whole ‘nother tangent so I’ll wrap up here, leaving you with just this thought, from Blade Runner…

“Roy: I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I’ve watched c-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhäuser Gate. All those … moments will be lost in time, like tears…in rain. Time to die.
Deckard: [voiceover] I don’t know why he saved my life. Maybe in those last moments he loved life more than he ever had before. Not just his life… anybody’s life… my life. All he’d wanted was the same answers the rest of us want. Where do I come from? Where am I going? How long have I got? All I could do is sit there and watch him die.”

By Page Follower: Christopher Napier

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