The End of Superheroes is Fast Approaching. Finally.

In the new digital world, we all can be heroes for more than one day.

Erik P.M. Vermeulen, PhD


Photo courtesy of author

“Disney will soon overtake and, ultimately, squash Netflix. So, I’m going to switch to Disney shares. And I would recommend you all do the same.”

My co-panelist at a business and innovation conference in Singapore four years ago said this, and I still remember my response.

“If I were you, I wouldn’t do that.”

But my co-panelist was insistent. “Netflix can’t survive the loss of the superheroes,” he said smugly. “Do you want to make a bet?”

“Sure,” I responded.

I am back in Singapore this week, gazing out my hotel window overlooking the picturesque Marina Bay.

As I enjoy the scenic view, I can’t help but wonder if the person who confidently predicted the demise of Netflix will also be attending tomorrow’s conference. His name escapes me, although I am sure I would recognize him if I saw him again.

I wonder if he remembers our bet.

I want to ask him what happened to all his superheroes after they left Netflix.

We Built Our World on Heroes

The reason why the panelist was so sure about the end of Netflix was the announcement that Netflix and Marvel’s superheroes would be parting ways because Disney, the parent company of Marvel, prepared to launch its own streaming service, Disney+.

Fast forward to today, and it’s clear that I am winning the bet. We grow tired of superheroes, not just on TV and in the movies but in our everyday lives.

We used to adore our heroes, as they physically embodied our values, dreams, and aspirations. They were our role models, influencing us to strive for greatness by emulating their example. Whether they were fictional characters, athletes, actors, musicians, or successful colleagues, we all had someone who inspired us to be the best — or at least a better — version of ourselves.

Although not everyone could achieve their level of success, our heroes continued to push us to reach our full potential.

Who Needs Another Hero?



Erik P.M. Vermeulen, PhD

Prof (law) exploring the collision of life, work, and technology, with a current project in the works - a sci-fi novel.