October 13, 2004

Imitation life imitates art imitating life, living art. Or something. Ad Astra.

Browsing around various newsbites today on MMORPGs (I am a confirmed junkie of Anarchy Online) I was touched by a recent...don't know a good word. Meme doesn't quite cut it. Fad? Hope not, too insulting. Phenomenon? Maybe. In any case, inside the online massively multiplayer game City of Heroes - which, if you don't know it, is a superhero based game - people have apparently been gathering in virtual flashmobs and leaving their toons online under landmark statues. The pix I saw showed several dozen toons gathered under a Statue of Atlas, all standing in a circle. Most were at attention, saluting; some were on their knees in mourning. Many had dressed their toons in replicas of the original costume of Superman, in homage to the subject of this 'living memorial' - Christopher Reeve, who just passed away.

The sight should be silly - a bunch of virtual people standing there mourning while their 'owners' could be off at work or school for all you know. But it wasn't, to me. Superman lived in that world, a world of shared fantasy, and Reeve embodied Superman to many people. Reeve is being mourned here by many of us. His alter ego, 'the Chris Reeve Superman,' is being mourned by these silent electronic avengers in their patient vigil.

I think he sees them, somewhere, and accepts their respect along with ours. For whatever it's worth, and who am I to say?

Posted by jbz at October 13, 2004 12:58 AM | TrackBack

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