TACK N°12 : Not all heroes wear capes

Illustrated by Bettina Lormeau

By Lino and translated by Maia Sefton.

Do you need a cape, tights, red underwear and a sigil on your chest to be a superhero? If these clichés, imposed by the american comic book culture after the second world war, they’re nowadays a norm in everyone’s collective imagination for superheroes but they may no longer be beholden to that. A superhero is defined by his or her supernatural powers that they use for the greater good.


They can, depending on the hero, fly, lift cars or see through walls. However a superhero is a creation of fiction. An image, a drawing, an actor. Except that a superhero doesn’t need to embody all of these characteristics to be a hero. The hero, a true hero, is someone who lives on your street, who doesn’t have to wear a mask to use his “powers”. The real heroes of our world aren’t the ones in the cinema (especially not right now), but the ones who in our daily lives even the most boring and monotone days.


There are in fact heroes out there whose stories deserve to be put on a pedestal, for example the story of Stephane Ravacley is deserving of become a scenario for a comics film. Stephane Ravacley is a baker in Besançon. Laye Fodé Traoré, 19 years old is an apprentice in his bakery and was forced to leave the metropolitan french territory once he reached adulthood.


To fight against the expulsion of his apprentice, the baker started a hunger strike on the third of January 2021.


This news was spread through multiple medias and his actions allowed Laye to stay in France. Even if no adaptations of his story have been made, it is undeniable that Stephane Ravacley can be considered as a true hero.


He shows himself to be one by putting his own health in peril to help someone whose own danger looms over them. “ If we don’t do something exceptionnel at some point in our lives(…) ” said the baker to the media Brut.


To do something exceptionnel. Stephanes exploit leads us to question what a superhero is. A superhero is no longer just a fictional character. He is no longer just a drawing but becomes a real person in our world.


He can become one of us depending on what we choose to do. * To do something exceptional. These words from Stephane Ravacley resound deeply today. At the time of Coups, protests and social, economic and sanitary crises, doing something exceptionnel is heroic.


Being an everyday hero is a fight. A fight that we need to lead armed with undoubtable kindness and courage for all circumstances.


Our turn.

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