What’s a Hero…to a Hero?


Morgan Wood

The image features the three DC actors quoted in the article. Top left: Robbie Amell. Bottom left: Drew Powell. Right: David Mazouz.

During the Heroes and Villains convention in Atlanta on November 18 and 19, I was presented with the opportunity to to dive into the DC universe and see how the stars of DC’s television series interpret heroism.

After having a few years under his belt of playing a young, pre-Batman Bruce Wayne in the show “Gotham,” David Mazouz’ definition of a hero is “somebody who bravely risks something from their personal life to help or save others.”

While he does not consider himself or his character to currently meet hero requirements, he does work in the mindset of a character that will eventually become Gotham’s hero. Though, he admits the intentions of teenage Bruce in crime-fighting are an outlet for anger rather than an inclination to help others.

When Robbie Amell, former member of F.I.R.E.S.T.O.R.M. in “The Flash,” was asked his interpretation of a true hero, he had this to say:

“What being a true hero to me would mean is standing up not only for yourself but for other people, and if you see something wrong or somebody’s doing something wrong, standing up for them , but at the same time I’m not telling anybody to go out and put themselves in harm’s way and get themselves hurt.”

Amell’s response takes into account the often ill-fate of heroes in film and the real world. Within television, fans often neglect the danger burdened on protecting others because the risks and plots are fiction. Here, Amell is very serious about taking on heroics in every-day life because it is very likely to get people hurt. Even established government programs with trained professionals often have personnel harmed in the line of duty. Still, they have taken a serious vow and made the brave decision to walk towards crisis and rescue endangered citizens. Our real-life heroes might not wear capes or hoods-or have flaming heads, but they are much more prevalent than we might realize. Firefighters, cops, and the Coast Guard willingly risk themselves on the day-to-day in the hopes of saving lives.

A hero can also be described as a person that is looked up to, an idol. That’s why I took to asking an actor that plays a villain how they feel about being an inspiration and hero to the fans of their work. Actor Drew Powell, known as Solomon Grundy in Fox’s “Gotham,” reacted with surprise at the notion of being someone’s definition of a hero. After all, his character pulls arms in the bad part of town. Despite his character’s demeanor, the real Drew Powell is very grateful for his position among the Gotham cast, stating:

“It’s definitely something that I don’t take lightly. I appreciate it so much. You know, that’s part of the cool thing about being an actor is that you get the opportunity to meet and see people that really care about your work and so that’s really special.”

All of the actors interviewed were surprisingly humble about recognition, acting just like normal people. What can be taken from this is that maybe they really do possess at least one heroic quality: modesty.