You have to wonder what it is that motivates the superheroes. We all know Spider-Man's mantra, "With great power comes great responsibility." The superheroes we read about give up a lot of their personal lives in order to be there for the civilians when the villains launch their evil schemes against the world.
The heroes do deserve some time off. They shouldn't be on duty 24/7. Yet you never really see superheroes able to take time off or go on vacation. When a catastrophe hits, they are obligated to jump into the action and do their part to save the world.
What happens when a hero messes up? Heroes are human too (well, most of them are). They may have incredible powers that put them well above men but they still can have the same fears and weakness that normal people do. What happens when they decide to take a drink, whether it's in recreation or out of fear? Should superheroes be held to a higher standard?== TEASER ==
When faced against pretty much the end of the world in Fear Itself, Tony Stark had to make a sacrifice. That sacrifice was his sobriety. As an alcoholic, fighting the urge to drink could be harder than fighting a supervillain. Stark said he took a drink in order to make a sacrifice to gain Odin's attention. Tony later admitted he drank because he thought they were all going to die and he wanted to die drunk.
The problem he is facing now is word got out that he was possibly drunk while fighting as Iron Man.
Tony did do a bit of drinking but also spent time in Asgard designing the weapons the heroes needed to turn the tide in the battle against the Serpent. He may have had time to sober up a little before joining them in the fight.
The fact that Tony is a recovering alcoholic and did some drinking doesn't seem like it should matter. He was able to help win the battle and save the world. Should it really make a difference if he was drinking?
This is where we have to consider what rights the superheroes have and what rights they've given up in becoming heroes to the world. Some heroes have the power to practically destroy the world (or at least a city) themselves. Heroes like Iron Man have a suit or weapons they use in their hero guises. If they drink and the drinking gets out of hand, it can be incredibly more dangerous than an average person drinking and operating heavy machinery. Tony didn't mess up while drunk...this time.
If some of this sounds a little familiar, it's because it is something I brought up back in April. It might sound like a funny plot line but there are some serious consequences that shouldn't be ignored. What would happen if a police officer or fire fighter was intoxicated while performing their duties? Lives would be put at risk. When it comes to superheroes, the dangers are increased.
Part of the repercussions may fall on whether or not the hero's identity is public or not. Someone like Iron Man can be subpoenaed because the world knows he is Iron Man. If Spider-Man got drunk and shot webbing in someone eyes or webbed them up and they suffocated, it would be harder to take him to court.
Heroes should not be above the law, but the fact that most of them are vigilantes also goes breaks the laws. They should be entitled to their privacy but much like celebrities give up certain things for their profession, superheroes are also giving up part of themselves.
Being a superhero is all about doing the right thing. It's unfortunate that they can't necessarily get rip-roaring drunk when off duty if they choose too but when they have easy access to the powers they do, that's part of the price they have to pay. Iron Man may have been trying to do the right thing but then again, it's his own fault for choosing to give up his secret identity. Perhaps no one got hurt this time but he could have made a deadly mistake. Superheroes need to be focused when the lives of innocents are on the line and drunk heroes running (or flying) around is simply asking for trouble.
Would having heroes willingly wear some sort of inhibitor collar if they choose to drink be asking for too much?