Most of us are feeling the squeeze from the quarantines sweeping the world, whether at work, at home, or at play. Some are enjoying the downtime, some are barely noticing a change, and some are on the verge of a mental breakdown. We should send prayers (and help, if possible) to those who are being negatively affected by the shutdowns. But how would fictional characters fare in these uncertain times? Let’s check in on some of them.
Superman: “The Daily Planet told Clark Kent to work from home, which gives me more time to patrol Metropolis. Since many people are staying home, there have been a lot of break-ins at jewelry stores, pawn shops, banks, and other places that are normally well-protected. And of course, damsels in distress are still falling from buildings and helicopters. Just the other day, I saved the mayor’s niece after Lex Luthor threw her off a bridge. I was in such a hurry, I forgot my surgical mask. I tried to keep my head turned to the side as I carried her to safety, but when she coughed in my face, I dropped her in a pond. I hope she could swim.”
Bilbo Baggins: “I had to cancel my eleventy-eleventh birthday celebration because Gandalf, that old wet blanket, advised against congregating in groups of three hundred or more. Phineas Fleabottom’s funeral had more numbers than that, and he was the shire’s used wagon salesman. Hardly a popular character. Ah well…at least it will give me time to work on my next book, There and Back Again Again. Please don’t tell Peter Jackson.”
Wonder Woman: “Oh, a virus that is most lethal to old men? Can’t say I’m surprised. I’d love to lasso one of those guys from the CDC and get the real story out of him. But since I’m at home, I’ve decided to take up a hobby. Tae-Bo. Lots of air punches, which is totally my thing. I brought home a Howitzer from the Great Man War and I set it up in the half-mile-long bunker underneath my unassuming suburban home to fire right at me. Tae-Bo makes my bullet-blocking much more graceful. Thanks, Billy Blanks!”
Doctor Leonard McCoy: “The coronavirus? The coronavirus? What is this, the Dark Ages?”
Batman: “Wayne Enterprises took a real pounding in the stock market. I had to lay off a number of workers and close down some underperforming departments. The good news is that this will save Wayne Enterprises a lot of money in the long run. The bad news is that some of these folks might become criminals to put bread on the table. And that would be a big mistake, because I’ve embedded GPS trackers in all of the Wayne Enterprises cell phones that we sent home with the laid-off workers to thank them for their years of service. If they run amok in Gotham, the Batman will make them wish they had never turned to a life of crime.”
Katniss Eberdeen: “I’m a big believer in natural health. Organic everything, essential oils. When they commanded us to line up, I was shocked. I mean, don’t they realize that anyone out there could be a carrier? A girl coughed next to me and I held my breath for at least a minute. I was going to volunteer as tribute, but there was no way I was going to the Capitol of Panem. I heard they had like over a hundred confirmed cases. Going to a crowded city is the last thing I want to do. Sorry, sis. May the odds be ever in your favor.”
How would your favorite characters react to the quarantines and social shutdowns?