You can never go wrong when you’re a superhero and you have a super cool gadget. A gizmo or thingumabob can come in very handy, usually if you find yourself in the trickiest of situations, but sometimes just for fun. You need to have fun every now and then, as ‘just’ being a superhero isn’t as glamorous as things first seem.
Unfortunately, I don’t have any whatchamacallits knocking around the Mansion, or in the vast catacombs below the cellar (not that I have explored the catacombs in their entirety yet, they are that vast) . I have the Aquatomobile, which is, simply, amazing. It’s a car, boat, plane, rocket-ship, and once, I think, if my memory serves me right, it became a helicopter. I only use it as the car now as the cost of fuel is slightly higher than it really should be, and the sight of a flying car can be off-putting to certain people.
As I am thingummy free, I have to use my mind more than other superheroes who use their gadgets. Using my mind more causes me to think more, and I think this may be why I have a tendency to look more deeply into things than I really need to. Not that looking too deeply into things is really a bad thing to do, but when you are in the middle of one thing and you find your mind wandering off at the most random of tangents, when you really should be concentrating on the task at hand, you can find yourself in the most… oh; right. Erm… situations like this one.
Anyway, on to the list…
1. Keep it simple.
Make sure that you are using an extremely simple gadget. A ring; a phone; a mirror; something where members of the public will see you using it with style and say “Wow"! Look at how they use their [insert gadget here]!”
2. Think image and personality.
Depending on the type of superhero you are, or want to be, you must have a gadget that suits your personality, image, uniform, name and is easy to carry around. I knew a superhero once who used a kite as a gadget, and although it was very handy to clonk an escaping super villain on their head to stop them, it was very cumbersome, and slowed him down when he needed to get out of the way of a runaway steamroller, which tended to happen more often to him than you would have expected it to. He went by the name of Mister Wind, which, for some reason, gave the newspapers a few howling headlines, and although the kite was a good idea in theory, it was a different story in practice.
3. Match the power.
Lucas Light was another superhero who used a useless doodad. He could control light, so thought it would be nifty to use… a torch. It’s all about the right image. Get it right and it’s great. Get it wrong, and it’s not as great. OK, Lucas could make the beam of light from the torch glow in different colours, some of which have not yet even been seen by the vast majority of the inhabitants on Earth, but when he used his powers he lit up an area the size of a football pitch, so the torch was neither use nor ornament when it came down to it – even with the different colours.
4. Remember health and safety.
The ultra-sexy Ravish used her lipstick as a gizmo. She had two, one for normal use, and the other to help her abilities to work more soundly. She could numb with a single kiss, but one day she put too much lipstick on herself and couldn’t speak for two months. She also couldn’t drink hot drinks, or eat solid food. She eventually changed her name to the Slinky Siren, but as the numbness never left her lips, she pronounced her name as the Thlinky Thiren. I believe she gave up super heroics when she got married.
5. Avoid many parts.
Try to avoid using gadgets with chains, sharp parts or bits that detach. They are fine if you need to make a point with, say, a super villain who you need to flick something just beside their ear to make the point, but not very good if your aim’s off slightly and you actually catch said ear. The point you were trying to make becomes invalid, and you could end up in more trouble than is really necessary.
6. Do not overuse your gadget.
Use your gadgets sparingly. Too much use becomes routine, to the point that the person (or alien invader) you are using the gadget on knows what you are going to do, and how – and when – you are going to do it. They can then be used against you. It’s never good when gadgets strike back. Look at Slinky.
7. Use with care.
Be careful when using your gubbins when you are teamed with another superhero for one reason or another. You don’t want to get in the way of the other’s equipment, as this is a definite no no in the streamline world of superherodom. An even worse no no is if your equipment became entangled, and your super villain made a quick getaway. They will not stop to help you, in any circumstance. They are chancers, them super villains.
8. Keep spares handy.
Always have replacement gadgets, or know someone who can build or fix gadgets as soon as you need them. Some superheroes have butlers for this job.
9. Use the gadget when you need to use it.
If you find that your gadget is not doing the job you intend it to do, discard it. But discard it carefully. Your gadgets can lead super villains to your secret identity, and even other innermost secrets of yours. If you find gadgets getting in the way, stop using them, and use your natural abilities instead.
10. Know how to use your gadget.
Never, I repeat, NEVER, stop to read the instructions on how to use a new gadget when in the middle of a case. If you don’t know how to use it, don’t.
Hopefully, these tips will come in handy should you choose to be a superhero, or you already are one and are looking for a different way to approach things.
Whatever you do, make sure you have fun doing it! If it isn’t fun, either don’t do it, or do it differently.