Sure you have. I have. I always wanted to be Wonderwoman in those dead sexy hotpants, or Storm from X-Men and able to control the weather.
Why is it part of human nature to wish for things that are beyond our scope of abilities? Who first thought so out of the box that they were most likely branded a heretic or lunatic? Why did that outside of the box thinking sometimes stir civilizations, create rulers of Gods, and sweep the globe with religions?
All these questions are rhetorical, unanswerable, but help give a tiny bit of insight. To our ancestors, Superheros were people like Moses and Buddha, Ra and Horus, Cleopatra and Marc Antony. Did they do anything spectacular, sure, were they loved and hated, revered and disdained...yep. Now bring back our modern concept of the Superhero, and think hard.
I'm betting 9 out of 10 the Superheros are from a world far from ours. Okay, cool. That means the Superhero thought coming to Earth and saving it was worth the trouble. By that reasoning, are we humans trying to convince ourselves that we are worthy of such attention? Sure. Sounds reasonable...but if we have to try to convince ourselves then does that mean that there is a tiny squiggle of doubt in our psyches?
I love a good Superhero story or movie as well as anyone, and I did go see The Avengers. Twice. The second time around we had our kids with us too and to be honest, they were bored until the final battle scene. They didn't get that much of the movie wasn't about battling outside forces of evil, but inner demons that threatened to rip The Avengers apart due to ego and self importance. They got over themselves and gave humanity a great battle to show that yes, we simple humans are worth it. Of course, halfway through a scene near the end that was particularly quiet, my six year old jumped up from his seat and growled at the top of his lungs "HULK SMASH!". We laughed so hard that tears blurred the ending scenes...all because my six year old had declared spectacularly who his favorite Superhero was.
Superheros and humanity go hand in hand, ask any child, or heck any adult. In years of trial and suffering people need to escape from grim reality and believe in something. Superheros will always be around, in books, in film, in world leaders, in the everyday human being.
Now if I could fit into those hotpants....