I just watched this amazing documentary on HBO, which was a hit at the Slamdance Film Festival, and I had no idea that there were this many real-life superheroes out on the streets everynight protecting the world from villains. I wore towels for capes when I was a child and I wanted to grow up to be Batman, but like most people, I grew out of those childish notions. But what would happen if some trauma prevented someone from outgrowing those notions and instead fixate on this fantasy? That’s what this documentary asks.

Mr. Xtreme is probably the most tragic real-life superhero in this documentary; he is a middle-aged, pudgy Asian man who is the sole member of the Xtreme Justice League, can’t get past the white belt in his martial arts training, loves the Power Rangers and has to sell his house and move into a van. But there are other fascinating characters as well, like Master Legend, anther middle-aged gentleman who claims to have super-strength, super-speed, sight beyond sight and healing powers, yet almost all of the footage of him shows him drinking beer in local bars and from the cooler in his van.

This is a must-see for those familiar with the DSM-IV and lovers of abnormal psychology, but it is also a fascinating watch for anyone who wants a peek into a world that most of us didn’t realize existed outside of comic books and summer movies.



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