ByOlivia van der Will, writer at

Around the world there are real-life superheroes who walk amongst us. (Hey, you might have even just passed one on the street). They are genuine heroes who bridge the gap between fantasy and reality to do their best for the world and to inspire others. Dressed in their own costume designs to complement their big hearts, it would be easy to spot one if you saw one at work.

Many of the superheroes listed identity remains top secret but some have spoken about transforming into their alter-egos at night time, after their day job is complete. These people have allowed the real world and comic world to fuse together through their work for the places that mean the most to them.

Some may call them vigilante's but for the most part these superheroes are just trying to do the best for their cities.

1) China: Zijing Woman aka The Chinese Redbud Woman

“The Chinese Redbud Woman” has appeared in Beijing and Hong Kong causing a stir in her foxy and noticeable outfit. She has been spotted in Hong Kong and Beijing handing out food and cash to the poor and those in need, never revealing her identity during her acts of kindness. One of her most known appearances was on Christmas Eve in 2012, when she handed out clothing, gifts and food to beggars by Xidan Subway station in Beijing. She always takes her time to talk to homeless people whilst handing out the food that she brings and has received lots of media attention in Hong Kong.

In an interview with China Hush the Redbud Woman was asked if what she does is just a publicity stunt she answered :

'I just wanted to help these people who are in need'

2) France - Alain Robert

Alain Robert from France is also know as 'The French Spider-Man'' and also ''The Human Spider''. This daredevil has climbed some of the tallest buildings in the world with his bare hands, often not using any equipment, aside from his trusty shoes and a small bag of chalk. Some of the buildings he has climbed include the 818 metres (2,684ft) building Burj Khalifa in Dubai, The Eiffel Tower 313 metres high, New Yorks' Empire State building which is 228 metres high. In total Alain Roberts has climbed around a phenomenal 70 of the worlds tallest buildings

So you are probably wondering why this man risks his life and climbs these buildings.. well... he is a political activist and has released many banners at the top of his climbs with messages on. After climbing the New York Times building in 2008 he let open a banner saying 'Global Warming Kills more people than 9/11 every week. Through his climbs Alain inspires others that they can reach any dream and that not limitation or height is to great for others.

''I see myself as a climber and an activist. As a public figure I know I can deliver a message because when I climb, the media follow. Spiderman is my nickname, but I have no supernatural powers. When I climb skyscrapers, there’s no special effect. No safety net ! "

3) Australia - Captain Australia

Captain Australia is based in Brisbane. He also patrol's the major capital cities of Australia, sometimes taking the law into his own hands. His method is preventing crime through patrolling the more seedier areas of the cities that he goes to. If Captain Australia see's any criminal activity he quickly acts to stop it. This vigilante wants to inspire normal people to be better citizens and wants to set a good example to those who he comes across to stay away from crime.

This Real Life Super Hero has claimed that he has the following skills on his website:

Photographic memory, iron will, genius level IQ (intelligence quotient), extraordinary physical strength, extraordinary physical agility, Master of Judo, Master of Ju-Jitsu, Master of Kung-fu, Master of Karate, Champion amateur boxing, Expert in Criminal Psychology, Expert Parkour (Street Running), Self-trained expert in hostage negotiation, Toxin-resistant (ninja training), Master of Escapology, Counter-insurgency

He definitely sounds like a vigilante that you would not want to mess with thats for sure...

4) Italy - Entomo

This masked man goes by the names 'Entomo' and also 'The Insect Man' he is likely the first recorded Italian Real Life Superhero. His aim is to help the environment, stop vandalism and protect the people of Naples. Entomo is part of a real-life super hero Italian group, which he himself created. Through his own actions he has been the inspiration for others to get involved and to help the cities that they live in.

In Entomo's own words this is why he chose to do what he does:

''To be a Real Life Superhero is truly the greatest deed a man can accomplish in a backwards world like this, where fiction is truer to reality than reality itself. On the other hand, the chance to fight for such a stunning planet is too significant to be turned down. Hear my buzz, fear my bite: I inject justice.''

5) Canada- Lightstep

The streets of Montreal have their very own super hero who's mission for a safer Montreal began three years ago. Lightsteps' look is post apocalyptic , styled but practical, his outfit contains a stab vest for safety. Lightstep' method to keeping the streets of Montreal's neighbourhoods safe is to providing techniques that could prevent future crimes. He hands out first aid kit's to addicts, cleans up used drug paraphernalia from the streets, and steps into situations where things may go wrong talking and reasoning with people. Lightstep is a fearless Real Life Superhero who's priority is to protect others, he inspires addicts to get better and also to seek help and has a watchful eye on his home town.

"People identify instantly with the idea of a superhero, someone who's anonymous, but public, doing good deeds, for whatever reason," LightStep said in an interview with Vice. "But that's not what I'm doing... For me, LightStep is a philosophy of being at the right place at the right time.''

Here he is on patrol in Montreal, this video was posted by the man himself and you can see the perils he faces:

6) UK - Shadow Ninja

This self-styled ''ninja'' and father-of-two takes to the streets of Yeovil Town (UK) at night time. His aim is to patrol and to protect his beloved home town so that it can be a safe place for all. His real name is Ken Andre and he is a martial arts expert. His efforts for public safety have given him lots of media within the UK and around the world. He does not let any kind of nonsense pass him by and has stopped troublesome youth in their tracks, he breaks up trouble when he can and calls the police when necessary. This modern day super hero inspires people to do the right thing and not cause crime in his home town.

Here is what drives him to prevent crime:

'When I was seven or eight I used to see my mum being beaten up by various boyfriends. I vowed not to let it happen again to my friends and family. So I grew up from a little child into a weapon. Even today when I hear cries, it sets something off inside – like a trigger. Something calls me.''

If you know more have a listen to this interview:

7) Sweden - Väktaren

Väktaren's journey began after being inspired by another RLSH who goes by the name Pheonix Jones and who hails from Seattle. His aim is to make Malmö a safer place to live in. He also hopes to deter crime just by his scary looking appearance and hopes that it will act as a distraction to people. This brave RLSH dresses head to toe in black and wears elbow pads, knee pads, a ''V'' on his chest standing for “Väktaren” and a white mask. The streets of Malmö, are now somewhat safer thanks to this Swedish Real Life Superhero.

8) Mexico - Superbarrio

It would be difficult for this masked crusader to walk around without being spotted with the striking colours he wears. His super-hero costume looks like its been pulled straight out of a comic book in the style of luchadores. Superbarrio Gómez is a Mexican superhero and used his fame for rallying people for political demonstrations, drawing attention to labor, to housing problems, and immigration issues. He proudly carries his initials on his chest and is proud of the work that he does. Superbarrio inspires others to stand up for what they believe in and to stand against crime.

"I opened my eyes and found myself as you see me with a voice telling me, 'You are Superbarrio.' I can't stop a plane or a train single-handed, but I can keep a family from being evicted."

Although now retired Real Life Superhero his legacy lives on...

9) USA - Pheonix Jones

Pheonix Jones is the leader of the Rain City Superhero Movement who are a Seattle crime fighting Brigade. Underneath the mask is the famous MMA fighter Ben Fodor, several years ago an event set this super-hero's transition in to motion. His son Freedom was cut by glass after his car was broken into and this father was not going to stand aside, he was compelled to help and went out to seek the culprit responsible. Ben then set out to make a change, a change to help his son, and a change for Seattle and his alter ego Pheonix Jones was born. Pheonix takes it on himself to fight crimes and enable arrests of criminals, through his crime-preventing actions he has often ended up in hospital but he carries on seeking out the next criminal. This vigilante has inspired many other newer RLSH to become who they are now and help fight for a safer world.

"I got tired of people doing things that are morally questionable," he says. "Everyone's afraid. It just takes one person to say, 'I'm not afraid.' And I guess I'm that guy."
"We are basically a citizen eye witness group. If we see a crime, we run to the victim, see if they want to press charges, at that point we'll go after the bad guy, catch him, and either hold them in position or dial 911 and wait until the cops arrive," Seattle 'superhero' Phoenix Jones says.

10) Africa- Lion Heart

Here we have a Real Life Super Hero who's story is heart warming and who does not use physical methods for change but his voice and a kind heart. Dressed in street clothes and a simple mask he is here to really make a change. Lion Heart lives in a nation torn apart by war and unrest.One billion people worldwide do not have access to clean water, imagine, thats three times the population of the USA. Here is where this Real Life Super Hero steps in. In Liberia, Africa where he is from people are dying every day from unclean water. Children lose hours each day of their education carrying water supplies from distant places. This guys aim is to educate people about water, he travels tirelessly from village to village educating people about sterilising water to prevent disease. He wants people to be responsible for saving their own lives and the lives of others, their children.

These people provide an inspiration for the world, you do not have to be someone who takes on criminals, but any small responsibilities taken on can make a huge impact for yourself and for those around you.


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