The Watchman didn’t arrive in a Batmobile but drove a tan, four-door Pontiac. He was in costume, of course — a trench coat, motorcycle gloves, army boots, a domino mask, and a red hooded sweatshirt emblazoned with a W logo. Journalist Tea Krulos had spoken to him over the phone but never face-to-mask. By the end of the interview, he wasn’t sure if the Watchman was delightfully eccentric or completely crazy. But he was going to find out.
Heroes in the Night, out now in the UK, traces Krulos’s journey into the strange subculture of Real Life Superheroes, random citizens who have adopted comic book-style personas and hit the streets to fight injustice. Some concentrate on humanitarian or activist missions–helping the homeless, gathering donations for food banks, or delivering toys to children–while others actively patrol their neighbourhoods looking for crime to fight. By day, these modern Clark Kents work as dishwashers, pencil pushers, and executives in Fortune 500 companies. But by night, only the Shadow knows. Well, the Shadow and Tea Krulos.
Through historical research, extensive interviews, and many long hours walking patrol in Brooklyn, Seattle, San Diego, Minneapolis, and Vancouver, British Columbia, Krulos discovered what being a RLSH is all about. He shares not only their shining, triumphant moments but some of their ill-advised, terrifying disasters as well. It’s all part of the life of a superhero.
As the Watchman explains, “If everyone made little changes in what they did, gave a little more to charity, watched out for their neighbours, we wouldn’t have the problems that we have”.
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.