April 28 Is National Superhero Day. Who Is Your Favorite Local Superhero?
Michael Novak, Art Director
Favorite Superhero I know it’s super basic but I am a full on Superman fan. Something about being Jewish and the whole idea of this character being created by Jewish immigrants during the early days of comics. Though absolutely NOT into any of the modern DC movie incarnations.
Favorite Portland Superhero Jeff Merkley
Kelly Clarke, Editor in Chief
Favorite Superhero Currently, my allegiance belongs to Okoye, the breathtakingly badass general of Black Panther’s all-female Dora Milaje guard and best damn wig-flinger on (or off) earth. Also, Edna Mode—who reminds me of Karen Brooks if she decided to dominate fashion instead of food coverage.
Favorite Portland Superhero Plate & Pitchfork farm dinner series founder Erika Polmar. She's stealthily converted local diners into ardent boosters for regional farmers and ranchers for 16 years by feeding them beautiful meals with a side of political action in the middle of Oregon’s vegetable patches and fruit orchards. She’s tenacious, tireless, and cares more about our state and the people who grow its food than anyone else I know. (This summer’s farm dinner schedule, featuring everybody from Coquine’s Katy Millard to Top Chef vet Greg Gourdet and Congressman Earl Blumenauer, is live now.)
Fiona McCann, Senior Editor-at-Large
Favorite Superhero As a child of the '70s, Wonder Woman was an early, indelible character and the 2017 movie maaaay have reduced me to tears of joy. But I'm still going to pick Naomi as my new favorite, because a strong young black woman with grit and smarts from the Pacific Northwest is a slam dunk for hero status, super or otherwise.
Favorite Portland Superhero Antoinette Edwards—A lifetime of working tirelessly for at-risk youth and basically anyone who needs her help (while remaining somehow dazzlingly stylish and ever eloquent) makes this inspirational Portlander our city's superhero supreme. I wouldn't be surprised if she could fly, too.
Karen Brooks, Food Editor & Critic
Favorite Superhero Daredevil. As a Jewish girl from St. Louis, he is nothing like all the lawyers in training I grew up with! (And big time crush on Charley Cox ... plus seasons 1 and 3 were terrific.)
Favorite Portland Superhero Dame! He fights for hoop truth and brought respect back to our house. Also, Tracy Oseran for her tireless work to feed hungry kids at Urban Gleaners. Every day she is making a difference in people's lives.
Marty Patail, Senior Digital Editor
FAVORITE SUPERHERO I'm suspicious of any supposed hero who take themselves too seriously or who doesn't seem like they could laugh at themselves. So all the Supermans and Captain Americas and Black Widows of the world are out. I'd probably go with Deadpool, for sheer comedic chops, and the Comedian from Watchmen for his sarcasm and cynicism. I also have a soft spot for Batman except when the Batsuit has nipples.
FAVORITE PORTLAND SUPERHERO Diego Valeri (Close second: Diego Chara.)
Ben Tepler, Outdoors & Food Editor
Favorite Superhero Green Lantern because of the next-level mythology and science fiction. Also, the ability to make or do pretty much anything is a major plus.
Favorite Portland Superhero Probably Ursula Le Guin (RIP) for totally flipping the script on science fiction in terms of gender and politics, having bottomless creativity, and for generally not giving a shit about what anyone else thought.
Rebecca Jacobson, Arts Editor
Favorite Superhero I was never into Marvel or DC superheroes as a kid, but I did desperately want to be Harriet the Spy (the literary version, not the film character), or at least somehow steal her skill for hiding out on dumbwaiters.
FAVORITE PORTLAND SUPERHERO Mariecella Devine has been teaching hip-hop dance in this town for 30 years (30 years, people!), and her gloriously fun, all-levels-friendly classes draw everyone from retired ballerinas to soccer dads. You will leave sweaty and aglow with renewed faith in the world.
Brian Breneman, Deputy Art Director
Favorite Superhero Magneto. He’s hilariously overpowered—if you take his abilities to their logical conclusion it’s pretty wild. I also like that Professor X always lets Magneto off the hook when he throws a temper tantrum and kills like 20 million people because they play chess or whatever. It’s entirely possible that I just like Michael Fassbender tho.
Favorite Portland Superhero JoAnn Hardesty