Let’s Play Pretend!
At some point in life, we all feel like escaping from this world for a while and traveling to the beautiful world of imagination. That’s why we sometimes tend to hide behind a mask and pretend to be something or someone we are not. The act of imitating fictional characters has many reasons, and this imitation can have advantages and disadvantages.
The reason behind art imitation in general depends mostly on the situation we find ourselves in. In the past, people used to wear masks as a way to worship their gods or to protect themselves against misfortune (The Masks We Wear). Today, kids wear masks on special holidays such as Halloween (The Masks We Wear). Wearing a mask can also have other meanings. For some people, putting on a mask helps them break their shyness and be more confident about expressing themselves and acting in a certain way (Harris). As for children, pretending to be a superhero for instance enables them to feel powerful and invisible at times when they feel insecure (qtd. in pelavin). In addition to that, art is also imitated in real life when we put on makeup in events such as Halloween in order to scare people, where the makeup makes the person look like a real monster.
Pretending to be a fictional character can have dangerous effects on kids. “Life doesn’t imitate art, it imitates bad television” (Woody Allen). It’s known that kids have a very wide imagination and hearing them say “I am superman. I can save the world, fly, and nothing can hurt me” while wearing a red cap tied around their neck isn’t a surprise to anyone of us. But how serious can their words be? In other words, is it possible that they might one day put these words into action? Kids are being exposed to television shows that make them believe that wearing superhero clothes enable them to fly and fight evil. Furthermore, superheroes in video games come back to life after they die. There are some real life stories about kids who died while pretending to...