Throughout history, societies have developed myths and legends of heroes and heroines. These heroes represent the values and beliefs that society admires most. From ancient Greek heroes to modern-day heroes depicted in movies, television and graphic novels, the public's desire for hero-worship remains undiminished.
Heroes possess qualities or strengths that are beyond those of ordinary people. Societies attribute the skills and traits that they admire most to these characters. Because the hero's capabilities are often beyond what is humanly possible, many of these characters are fictional.
"One must think like a hero to behave like a merely decent human being," writes poet May Sarton. This quote explains why societies continue to idolize the heroic and even create fictional characters if they cannot find real-life heroes. Heroes serve as models of the best in humanity. Poet Bertolt Brecht explains the consequences of society's existence without heroic characters, stating, "Unhappy is the land without heroes."