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Hero Support is the term used to label individuals in a supportive or subordinate position to Real Life Superheroes. Sidekick is generally not used within the RLSH community due to connotations of the term which imply the person to be of lesser importance. Thus, the term hero support is used by the RLSH community instead. The advantages of using the term hero support rather than sidekick are threefold:
- Hero Support is more inclusive of individuals whoe roles.
- Hero Support also makes no implications about the level of activity so it can describe an individual who is simply a fan with varying degrees of passion or a person with a more active presence in the community. It does not preclude non-RLSH.
- The use of sidekick to label a student or beginner RLSH following a mentor is avoided due to the short amount of time required for a beginner RLSH to branch out on their own. In these cases, hero trainee would be a better term for the situation.
This custom does not mean usage of the word sidekick is avoided but it is generally used in media reports on the RLSH community and not the RLSH themselves.
Definition of SidekickEdit
For the purposes of this article, the term sidekick will be defined as the RLSH community's use of the term hero supportfollows in its tradition. Sidekick was derived from pickpocket slang in the 19th century where the front pocket was referred to as a "kick" and considered the hardest to pickpocket. Metaphorically, a sidekick would be the counterpoint then to the hero serving as the "kick."
Within the community, Hero Support can often refer to hero-friendly crafting experts, tailors and leather-workers, in addition to more involved individuals, in both active and passive roles. This includes crafters like Professor Widget, who designs custom armor and weapons for heroes, and groups like The Sector, who provide software to make heroes' jobs easier. The term also refers to media-dubbed "Side-kicks" and Oracles, like The Ace, who provides direct back-up to Master Legend, and Zimmer, who gathered intelligence for the New York Initiative.
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