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The Wednesday Waffle Issue #34: Don't try this at home. Or at all really...

Before we get into the Waffle, I have to take a second to do the usual


LOOK AT ALL OF THIS WEEK'S NEW COMICS HERE!


thing, because it's kinda my job. But also before we get into the subject of this week's Waffle, we want to show you this:

Because that, believe it or not, is Stan "The Man" Lee introducing the Captain America cartoon in the sixties. Totally unrecognisable until he starts to talk...


Anyway. You've probably seen this by now, but just in case, I thought you might be interested in a new superhero character - ShadowVision, a down and dirty street level hero trained in martial arts and kitted out with various hand held weapons. He is the protector of the city of Little Rock Arkansas and has sworn to bring down the terrifying villain known only as the Little Rock Slasher, thought to be responsible for a series of unprovoked stabbings.


As a premise for a comic it's a little derivative, but if the characterisation was good I can see that a decent creative team could do something cool with it.


Here's the thing though. ShadowVision isn't fictional.


He's real.


"ShadowVision" Image taken form the Arkansas Times

You can read the full story over on the Arkansas Times, but this is him. In true costumed vigilante style his real name is unknown but for the last eight years this man has stood as the self styled protector of his adopted city.


So. A cynic might look at this picture and observe that he looks like a delusional wannabe who has bought a lot of tactical gear from wish.com (I recognise that helmet from ads that turn up on my twitter and instagram feeds...) and now craves attention.


I dunno though. I think there are some questions we should be asking.


Now. I'm completely aware that this is likely to be some kind of hoax, an elaborate practical joke perhaps, or just some friends having fun with creative cosplay. But for now I'm going to take him at face value. Let's assume that this guy really does patrol the streets with the intention of protecting the innocent from wrongdoers.


It's a bit of a worry, isn't it?


I can't help thinking that if he really is doing what he says he's doing, he's going to get himself killed. It's not just him either. If you check out his Facebook page (because of course he has one) you can see him hanging out with some like-minded fellow vigilante types calling themselves Master Legend and Anti-Hero, although he is clear that he prefers to work alone.


His claims regarding his exploits seem a little outlandish. He claims to have stopped "a couple of armed robberies" and "eliminated" a couple of serial killers. Why haven't we heard about this? Because it was a "long time ago". Colour me unconvinced. However, pictures on his Facebook page seem to suggest that he has some fans who really like him and feel that he's doing some good. So who am I to snark?


Still. Arkansas is clearly very different from the UK. Were a black clad man in a skull-like airsoft helmet to stride down Harrogate High Street with a brace of swords strapped to his back and a Sai on each thigh I suspect he'd very quickly find himself having a serious conversation with some very unimpressed Police officers. His social media features