Interview with Andrew Bean, aka the Sensationalist... as Imagined by Andrew Bean
**Special thanks to author John David Anderson for this amazing interview with his character, Andrew Bean!**
Okay, Drew. This is it. This is your moment. Don't be nervous. Your hair looks fine.
"Welcome back to Heroes Among Us! We are here with the Sensationalist, one of the newest members of H.E.R.O. And, I'm sorry, but I just have to ask.... Can you tell me what I had for lunch?"
"An everything bagel, Matt. With a tomato basil spread and a Mr. Pibb chaser."
"That's remarkable. And I sucked on a breath mint before doing this interview."
"A tic-tac, actually. Peppermint. Only one and half calories."
"Fantastic. So tell me, what made you want to become a superhero sidekick?"
"Well, Matt, I've always wanted to give back to the community. You know...go out there and really make a difference in the world."
"No. Not really. I just joined H.E.R.O. to meet girls."
"Ha ha. And have you? Met any girls, that is?"
"Well, there is this one. But we actually met before. She gave me a bloody nose."
"She sounds absolutely charming. So you're saying, though, that you aren't interested in saving the world."
"Not at all. I'd love to save the world. I mean, it's not like we've got extras...ha ha ha."
"Ha ha ha."
"Heh...ahem. It's just, I'm only a sidekick, you know. And not exactly your savior-of-all-mankind type."
"Because of your rather limited powers?"
"And your skinny biceps..."
"I have free weights in the basement."
"And the fact that you've never actually thrown a punch in your life..."
"I've thrown them...they just didn't land anywhere."
"And still you insist on being a sidekick."
"Matt—have you ever opened a box at Christmas and gotten something that you don't recognize? I mean, you have no idea what it is or what it's good for? Maybe it's a kitchen utensil or some new fangled kind of screwdriver. But you just look at it and think, wow, this is cool. I'm sure I could do something with this."
"Yeah. Whatever. The point is, I know I can put my talents to good use. I just have to be paired up with the right Super, you know. Someone who complements me, who makes up for my weaknesses."
"You mean someone strong and powerful and good at fighting crime?"
"Yeah. Something like that."
"Got it. And what do you say to all the recent naysayers who claim that sidekicks are more trouble than they are worth?"
"I say they suck."
"But I have this quote here, from John Reagan, an expert on supernormal history who says, quote, 'The litany of failures, from the Sparrow to Impulsive Girl to The Friction Kid, prove that superhero sidekicks are, in fact, a bane to the crime-fighting community, hobbling the heroes who are now additionally burdened with saving one more lost soul."
"Her name was Impulse Girl, not Impulsive Girl. And it wasn't her fault that The Clobberer's heart exploded. She was just trying to make him punch faster. How was she supposed to know he had arteriosclerosis?"
"Still, you have to admit: Sidekicks don't exactly have the best reputation."
"And that's exactly what H.E.R.O. is for. To train us to become skilled crime-fighters in our own right. Heroes who fight alongside our partners, not drag them down."
"And speaking of which: Have you gotten your assignment yet? Do you know what Super you will be teaming up with?"
"Well, it's classified, of course, but...what the heck, I think I can tell you. I'm paired up with the Titan. I actually have the letter in the back pocket of my jeans."
"The Titan? But nobody's seen or heard from in ages."
"I know, right? I'm just fortunate to have the opportunity to work with such a great hero. He was always my favorite growing up. I have his first edition holo card."
"So jealous. So do you think we will be seeing you and the Titan out on the streets anytime soon?"
"I still have a lot to learn, Matt, but, yeah, I'm sure we will save the world eventually."
"If the Fox doesn't beat you to it, that is..."
"Yeah. She's pretty awesome, too."
"Pretty awesome? Have you seen that thing she does with her eyes? My god! You don't think someone like that, and someone like me?"
"Right then. Sensationalist, it was great talking with you and we wish you the best of luck in your future heroic endeavors."
"Thank you, Matt. It was a pleasure talking to you."
"And you keep an eye on that girl of yours."
"I sure will."
I paused and wiped the fog from the bathroom mirror to get a better look at myself, setting down the toothbrush I had been pretending was a mic. My face flushed pink from embarrassment, though there was no one around to hear me. Downstairs my parents were still trying to figure out how to use their new coffee grinder. They'd spilled the beans. Still, it was stupid, standing here in my underwear, talking to myself. Who was I kidding?
I wonder if he ever did this. The Titan, that is. Did he ever stand in front of the mirror and interview himself. Probably not. More the strong silent type. I couldn't wait to meet him in person. Soon, Mr. Masters said, though with him time was especially relative. Still, it made me nervous, knowing he was out there. My hero.
I walked to my room and picked out a shirt to wear. I briefly considered stuffing my mask in my pocket, but I didn't think I would need it. I was just going to hang out with friends.
It was bowling tonight.
To find out what happens when the Sensationalist and the Titan get together, pick up a copy of Sidekicked. You can also learn more by visiting www.johndavidanderson.org or on Facebook at JohnDavidAndersonAuthor.
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