Aug 23 2012
I love superheroes. Always have, always will. Some might call me a nerd in this regard, but since that word doesn’t really mean anything anymore and I don’t live in a mid-80s rom-com, I’m cool with that. One of the draws for me about this general trope is the brand of escapism it has to offer; who among us hasn’t daydreamed about using mutant powers to make our lives exponentially more awesome? (The answer is nobody. Not one person. You’re reading an article with the word “vigilante” in the title at a website named Unreality Magazine, dummy.) I know I have. Here’s a quick anecdote:
When I was about five years old, I wanted these Superman pajamas in the worst way. They were on sale at Sears. Came with a cape and everything. After a week or so of incessant pleading, my mom finally broke down and took me to the store to buy them. Boy, was I excited, despite her exhausting insistence the entire drive there and back that even once I had my Velcro-fastened cape firmly in place, my afternoon would never end in human flight. Yeah, yeah, whatever Mom, I thought smugly to myself as I ripped open the packaging. You can forget about that postcard I was going to send from Canada after peeing on bears from 10,000 feet.
Anyway, you can probably guess how this story ends. After outfitting myself in those spiffy new digs, I climbed on top of our living room couch, extended my arms accordingly, and took the biggest leap of faith of my young life (both literally and metaphorically, I think). Over the linoleum floor.
As I lay prone on the cruel ground, violently gasping for breath (I landed squarely on my chest, you see, and had never had the wind knocked out of me before), it was my mom’s turn for smugness. “I told you that silly cape wouldn’t make you fly,” she crowed from above, hands on hips. I learned a couple of lessons that day: 1) My mother was seriously willing to go the distance when it came to important life lessons, and 2) F*ck Superman.
In a matter of years, one of my new go-to role models was Batman, and that wasn’t just because of my sudden desire to become an orphan. He’s simply a more realistic hero to aspire to. Superman’s superpower was that he was an invincible alien who could fly, shoot lasers from his eyes, and lift heavy stuff. That’s kind of a high bar. Batman’s superpower, on the other hand, was that he was super rich and owned the coolest crime-fighting tech on the planet. And while all those bat-gadgets seemed pretty farfetched a couple decades ago, here’s some good news: if you’ve got decent credit and the right resources, you can become your own Batman overnight. Here’s your shopping list.
Oh God yes. I can’t think of a way to describe this bodysuit without also describing peculiar erections, but when I sent that link over to Remy last night, he called me an hour later from the hospital after what he described as “the goddamned most euphoric aneurism ever, man.” Just take a look at that product description:
Why the word “badassery” isn’t up there somewhere I’ll never know, but Kevlar and leather just sounds so…right, doesn’t it? It even comes with a utility belt, for goodness sakes. And yeah, yeah, it’s technically a motorcycle suit that costs the same price as a used car, but f*ck motorcycles, man. F*ck anything with wheels, for that matter. You’re a devil-may-care vigilante now, and it’s time to look the part with your new…
Just because my body can’t levitate doesn’t mean I can’t get airborne, Mom. This thing is straight out of Star Wars: Episode I, and there’s no better way to strike fear into the hearts of fleeing criminals than from a few menacing feet off the ground (and hopefully faster than 6 mph).
OK, now close your eyes for a second. Wait, read the rest of this paragraph, and then close them. Close your eyes, and just envision yourself in your leathery, Kevlar-y suit, cruising through downtown Chicago in your jet-black TeejMachine (yes, you get to name it). Pretty cool, right? Well, shit’s about to get a whole lot cooler once that puppy’s equipped with a brand-new set of…
What’s a good pseudo-Batman’s number-one rule? “Always use non-lethal force against your enemies.” Well, there’s nothing non-lethaler than stopping ne’er-do-wells in their tracks with a handheld weapon that causes side-splitting headaches and projectile vomiting. It even works through walls. You can put one of these together yourself on the cheap, but since we’re planning on maxing out your Mastercard anyway, why not make it ten? Mount them on the outside of your new TeejMachine, and now we’re cookin’ with gas, baby!
Picture this: you’re a bank robber, and you just got away with the perfect crime. Or so you thought. Now imagine a man in a skintight leather-and-Kevlar suit rounding the next corner in hot pursuit (Is that a disco-ball hoverbike, by the way?). And the closer he gets, the more you inexplicably want to paint the walls with those Slim Jims you had for breakfast. Oh God, where did that headache come from? So you start climbing a fire escape to get away. Hovercrafts can’t climb walls, right? No, silly criminal, they cannot. But the Dark Teej can once he gets his hands on a…
Don’t worry, dudes and dudettes, you won’t have to ditch the leather in favor of going vertical; this bad boy slips over the shoulders just like your favorite Jansport. Or so I would assume. I probably wouldn’t try jumping from building to building with it, though. That thing looks a bit heavy, and it’ll be a hell of a lot heavier on the way down with an unconscious thief in tow. If only there was a way to augment your physical capabilities with a…
Done and done. Looks like something else comes in its own backpack, and it’s named the HULC. Seriously. That acronym might officially stand for Human Universal Load Carrier, but it also stands for a green mutated freak who can shot-put Army tanks, and you can bet your ass that for the right price, an exoSpider suit combo is in the cards. Oh, and as long as your Morgan Freeman stand-in is Frankenstein-ing all that tech, he may as well throw in a…
If there’s room in your suit for leather, Kevlar, an exoskeleton, and a wall-scaling Hoover vac, there better be room for a 12-year single malt. Tony Stark sure didn’t let anyone tell him he couldn’t drunk-Iron Man, and I’m pretty sure there aren’t any laws about drunken hovering or wall-climbing. Even if there are, f*ck it. You’re a vigilante. Plus you can leave all those vomiting cops in your dust as you glide-weave back to your very own…
Let’s face it: underground caves are an accident waiting to happen, and if you’re going to fight crime, you owe it to yourself to purchase a lair chicks will swoon for. (Also, it’s harder for the frisky ones to leave when you’ve got a moat. Just sayin’.) These estates are surprisingly affordable, and once you get the whole butler situation straightened out, you’ll be exchanging mid-air blows with your arch-nemeses in the morning, and popping champagne corks in your Jacuzzi by happy hour.
Or you could just use all this crap to throw the most kickass keggers ever.
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