Marvel’s Hero Project Celebrates Its Biggest Heroes on Disney+November 4, 2019
Throughout the decades, comic book characters have been inspiring legions of fans. These characters, ranging from the likes of Black Panther to Mystique to Spider-Man, serve greater purposes in our lives. As fans, we not only honor them in all aspects of our lives, but we share their stories to inspire others.
Even from the days that Marvel Comics printed under the name Timely Comics, first launched in 1939 by Martin Goodman, it was evident that the stories were always meant to be something more. The early Marvel greats channeled the heroic and Herculean efforts in their contemporaries onto the glossy (check) pages. One doesn’t have to look far to see who were their influencers were, especially during a time where some of the world’s largest superpowers were embroiled in war and strife.
Something interesting happened when Stan Lee and Steve Ditko introduced Spider-Man in August 1962. Before then, teenagers and children in comics had been relegated to sidekick and background roles. But once Peter Parker hit the scene, readers had someone as their contemporary to look up to, with storylines centering around loneliness, bullying and the day-to-day drag of adolescence, Spider-Man became a hero for a different reason. His power didn’t just lie in his wall clinging or web shooting abilities, but in the fact that he could inspire others while navigating these difficulties and joys while growing up as a unique young adult.
With the inception of Disney+ on November 12, Marvel is yet again aiming to introduce the next generation of inspiring young heros with the new show, Marvel’s Hero Project. This series chronicles real-life children and teenagers who by overcoming adversity in their own lives have become an inspiration. The Marvel company indoctrinates these young leaders, inventors, athletes, etc. to their Marvel Hero Project and cements them in the hall of legends by creating their very own comic book.
The template for this show is quite simple, a teenager or kid with a touch of the extraordinary is highlighted. Their hard work in what they do or what they have accomplished is showcased, without forgoing their hardship. The Marvel bullpen, including Sana Amanat, Sarah Amos, Joe Quesada, Shane Rahmani, Stephen Wacker and Liza Wyles, discuss in-house what makes these young people heroes.
The obstacles these kids overcome and the ingenuity they use to resolve societal issues is the calling factor of these series. In 20 episodes, you meet 20 different individuals who in their own way have found an inspiring manner to change the world, whether it be there’s, a communities, or in the grand scope of things, the entire world.
In the inaugural episode that airs on November 12, we meet 12 year old Jordan, who uses her interest in STEM to create a 3D printed prosthetic limb. As cited by the Amputee Coalition, using 3D printing to create prosthetic limbs has only been around for a few years, but has quickly changed the field. 3D printed prosthetics can be made for as little as $50, which vastly contrasts the price tag of a standard myoelectric arm which costs around $10,000. In this episode, Jordan displays her prosthetic limb, which has taken the limb difference community, especially the younger members, by storm. Jordan’s invention, a bright purple conical shaped limb that shoots glitter, goes beyond traditional prosthetics. Her invention has manifested into a movement to inspire other children and individuals with limb difference called Project Unicorn. Her ingenuity in creating a glitter cannon arm prosthetic is likened to the genius of Shuri.
At the end of each episode, the young heroes are presented with an initiation gift to Marvel’s Hero Project, which includes a one-of-a kind jacket, their story as told in comic book form created by some of Marvel’s top talents, and notification that Marvel has donated $10,000 to a cause they care deeply about. By the end of each story, you are as moved as the lives that are touched.
In the first few episodes we also meet Elijah and Adonis. Inspired by his own hero, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., 10 year old Elijah has taken it upon himself to rally his community to end child abuse. After a classmate disclosed to him that she had been a victim of child abuse, Elijah set out right away to raise awareness. By writing letters to senators, writing permit proposals and canvassing his neighborhood, he was able to pull together a march. Adonis’ story mimics the Man Without Fear, Daredevil, in that the two are visually impaired. While Matt Murdock trapezes across rooftops in Hell’s Kitchen, Adonis scores touchdowns as a running back on his school’s football team.
The comic books created by Marvel are accessible online. A new episode airs each Friday on the Disney+ streaming service, launching on November 12.
Take a look at some of the inspiring kids you’ll meet with the trailer: