With the population of the United States leading the world in obesity, why are there not more superheroes who are a little on the portly side? This could be the answer to so many problems with self-esteem. Power to the fat people! We need more FAT Heroes, bottom line. All other aspects of the population can be represented with heroes, why should the rights of the overweight person be denied?
Is there some problem with fat people? Do people not like them? How could that be possible? We love fat people in the United States. If we didn’t, why would we have so many?
Maybe we can blame the media. The pressure placed on people to meet some image expectation is pretty prevalent. ESPN just released what they call their Body Issue and they show the athletes who are considered perfect specimens of humanity, the ideal that we should all reach for. Maybe they are born without fat, or maybe it’s Maybeline.
Fat people are not absent in comic books. There are some overweight super people, whether powered through some accident or genetics or whatever. I’ll give you a few of them here and you can tell me what you think.
The Blob – Right from the start, we know this guy is going to be huge. There is no pussy-footing around with his name. He is not XXXL Man or Big & Tall Man… he is the frickin’ BLOB! You may argue this, but his power is to absorb any impact with his fat… How stereotypical is that?
Big Bertha – A member of the Great Lakes Avengers, Ashley Crawford was actually a 120-pound model, but her superpower (or curse?) was to swell up to 700+ pounds…
Bat-mite – Bat-mite is a being from the fifth dimension, similar to Mister Mxyzptlk, except that he really looks up to Batman and has stylized himself the Dark Knight. He is usually portrayed with a bit of pudge around the middle, not exactly fat, but not in top physical form either.
Fanboy – This character from the WB show Freakazoid! was the epitome of the fanboy stereotype. He was the arch-nemesis of Freakazoid and tortured him by reciting all of the stupid little facts about his favorite comics and shows. Plus, he is a big fat guy.
There are a lot of other overweight looking characters in comics or movies, like the Slug, Mr. Incredible, Kingpin, and Fatman, but no real major characters who reflect the level of obesity prevalent in modern society. I feel like we really need a character who personifies this image. Perhaps diversity will be that driving force. Maybe all we need is for big people to stand up and call out for representation.
Everyone is celebrating comic book diversity with the revelations this last week of a new female Thor and the new Captain America. I would like to think that a fat Batman or Spider-Man is not far behind.