In the era of superhero’s, a star of Pixar was born, The Incredibles. Mr. Incredible and his wife Elastigirl were forced into an ordinary life of Bob and Hellen Parr after all superhero venture was discontinued by the government. After being heroes of the Metroville for their whole life one incident changed it for everyone. This one bad incident snowballed and all superheroes were re-located having to pretend to be something they were not and live a normal life. Bob and Hellen have two kids making it look like they have suppressed their powers and accepted this life, but have they? Bob gets call from an old friend who lights the flame all over again. On from here is the adventure of The Incredibles not just Mr. Incredible. There are many correlations between this movie and the themes of humanities. Through culture, tradition, political elements, heroes and empathy. This story in many ways is a replica of our class.
To start off, these superheroes were abruptly plunged into a new culture. Going from a day of fighting crime to a 9 to 5 job would be a shock. As a superhero, basic human qualities and knowledge is never a priority. This non-conformity is the connection to a journey of culture through social worlds. Each member of the family is mentally fighting their invisible prison bars just wishing they could do what they are meant to do. The character drug down by this the most is Bob. He is stuck at a meaningless insurance job which has him in a deep funk but is going day in and day out not making it a big deal. In the beginning of the movie Bob is shown driving home from the job he hates, frustrated at life and as he gets out of his car, he slams the door so hard the window breaks. He throws the car over his head, but a little neighbor kid sees him. This kept “Bob the neighbor” from doing anything that “superhero Bob” would have done otherwise. On the other end of the spectrum there is Dash. He is sad because he has not experimented with his powers. He is not being careful about letting his frustration be heard which is very dangerous for the family. Both Bob and Dash are having difficulties with hiding who they truly are. This goes to show that a change in social culture can have a big effect of people and their lives.
Following that, this story has a major representation of a mythic hero and one’s values. Plain and simple the story is introduced by Mr. Incredible. A substantially bigger man than normal with super strength who protects his family and the people of Metroville. Super strength, durability and stamina make Bob, Mr. Incredible. This is a classic representation of a classic hero but as the movie goes on it takes a turn. A classical hero would generally take all of the fame for their good deeds, but not in this story. The dynamic of the story turns into a team like perspective. When Mr. Incredible gets taken by Syndrome he may have been terminated without the help of his family. This shows that in this superhero story there is not just one hero but four. The villains could not be defeated without the help of the whole family.
With being a hero, one must have a costume, or a super suit! The whole family turns from general population to superheroes by the change of outfit. This is where creativeness of aesthetics is introduced. Bright red suits with a bold “i” icon in the center of the chest. If a flash of red is spotted anyone in Metroville would know who it was. With the idea of a superhero one generally is imagined having a cape, but not for the Incredibles. This is one unique part of their appearance that sets them apart from the typical hero. Each family member is matching, black boots, red suit and a mask that takes their identity away. Just as a sports team, matching uniforms creates the team persona and is pleasing to the eye as a connection to an aesthetic.
Going more in depth into the story one starts to see the political dimension of the work of the superheroes. This is when the superheroes get shut down from their work. The city of Metroville comes together and against the superheroes. They were forced to adopt civilian identities and retreat to the suburbs as normal people. This act of a veto is a force of political power against this group of supers. To understand art there needs to be a general understanding of politics, especially with this movie. Without the political power of the city the supers may have never been taken down. On the flip side of this the power may not always be the best for everyone. In this story the city was wrong, and the Incredibles broke the rules to save them from evil. The action of The Incredibles banding together and doing what was right regardless to outside influences shows how tight this family is.
As a superhero family, much empathy is needed. The only people that they are allowed to talk to about their powers is within their family. The ability to understand and share feelings is why the family is so dynamic. Just as any other family, they are not perfect. In the scene when Dash and Violet are alone in a cave, this trait come through. The two children are left alone on a foreign island with enemies all around. As siblings do, they started to fight. As soon as danger was near, they used their powers to save each other. At the end of this the two hugged and went on to find their parents. This shows how the family needs a little extra empathy for each other in times of crisis to stay safe.
This empathy for each other is what makes them a family. When looking at all of the characters, not one of The Incredibles family looks alike. The similarity of powers and the empathy they have for one another is their bond. Just as Gilgamesh and Enkidu. These two are not actually brothers but they have a bond that makes them “brothers”. In this movie it is the empathy that bonds them together. As the movie concludes the family concours a villain and all is well in the city of Metroville… until it isn’t. The family runs off out of screen, to do what they were destined to do. Just as we should do. Not changing our true self to please others but doing what we are put on this planet to do all as one bonded unit.
In this Pixar film The Incredibles I was surprised to find so many parallels to this humanities class. The themes run through the culture change and journey of culture through social worlds that these characters go through that lead into traditions within this culture. These traditions entail certain values that the superhero’s possess. The film also plays with the idea of esthetics in the superhero world and how this effects the story. Onto a very important political side of the film that when not present could change the film greatly. Finally, throughout the story the idea of empathy is weaved through to show how this family of superhero’s is such a dynamic team. When breaking down these elements, everyone has something to learn from a little kid’s cartoon like The Incredibles.