METRO CITY – Costumed adventurer the Crimson Revenger is at a loss to explain why he thought a masked child would be any help in fighting the city’s violent criminal underbelly.
The child sidekick, Sparky, aka Jacob Tillsonburg, 11, was legally adopted last year by costumed hero, the Crimson Revenger. The elusive superhero detailed how the addition of Sparky initially offered a light counterbalance to his vigilante crime fighting and rooftop brooding. However, the arrangement quickly presented several problems.
“Well, first off, an 11-year-old is not very strong. Like, even a kid who’s above-average tough is no match for an adult henchman, or a bank robber with an AK-47,” explained the shadowy protector of Metro City. “I guess I just pictured a lot more colorful adventures, and a lot less of me and a child combing through grisly murder scenes,” the caped do-gooder added before sighing deeply. “Oh, and let’s not even get into my supervillains. Yikes.”
Reached for comment, the Crimson Revenger’s arch nemesis Berserko, 38, was similarly uncomfortable at the thought of facing a preteen adversary. “Sure, people get mad when I blow up a building, but I look like such a huge dick when I kick an 11-year-old.”
“Plus I’m not exactly legally supposed to be within 100 feet of children, so it’s basically just problematic all around,” Berserko concluded.
Back at the Revenger Cave, The Crimson Revenger outlined several unexpected challenges in bringing on a child sidekick: preparing nutritious snacks for late night stakeouts; restrictive child labour laws; sourcing and ordering child-sized body armour. “And after all that,” the Revenger added, “I’m still just being helped out by a literal child. Other than that one case where the Puzzler’s nefarious questions required knowing a lot about Call Of Duty, Sparky hasn’t been much of a help at all.”
Asked whether he had considered reaching out to a more age appropriate crime fighting partner, the Crimson Revenger opened up. “It’s hard to make friends at this age, you know? Plus, now I got a kid, so, you know.”
Upon realizing that his youthful sidekick was at best negligibly helpful and at worst an outright liability, The Crimson Revenger admits he began scaling back the child’s involvement in his nighttime escapades. “When we’re out on missions, I’ve mostly taken to leaving Sparky in the Crimsonmobile to watch YouTube clips on my iPhone. It just gives me some peace of mind to know that he’s safe, and not out fighting a dozen armed goons in some filthy warehouse at 3 am.”
“What the hell was I thinking,” lamented the city’s champion.
The scourge of Metro City’s criminals has reported begun investigating options for returning his youthful ward to the orphanage where he first adopted him. “Look, I get how it sounds,” the vigilante explained. “But you read all the time about kids ‘growing up in the system’. So sure, it’s not ideal, but it’s not like it’s unprecedented.”
Reached for comment, Sparky the boy dynamo was running around practising “cool ninja kicks” after having eaten an entire box of Fruit By The Foot.
At press time, the Crimson Revenger was scanning the Humane Society website for potential dog sidekicks.