As the most popular streaming service on the planet, it was only logical that Netflix would place a big focus on cinema’s favorite genre to help power the constant bombardment of original content coming to the platform on a regular basis, and How I Became a Superhero has repaid that faith in kind by flying straight towards the upper echelons of the most-watched list despite only premiering yesterday.
Following in the footsteps of costumed, superpowered, or effects-driven bedfellows like The Old Guard, Project Power, Thunder Force, We Can Be Heroes and many more, How I Became a Superhero is the latest surprise smash hit for Netflix, not to mention yet another hugely successful foreign film that continues to cement the streamer’s reputation as a true global behemoth.
Set in Paris, the story has shades of Project Power, in that a drug giving regular people superpowers has been rapidly spreading across the city. Two cops are investigating the case with the assistance of a pair of superheroes, and they’ll do whatever it takes to stop the inevitable crime wave that comes when normal folks get heightened abilities, but there’s naturally a conspiracy to unravel along the way.
There are elements that will feel more than familiar to comic book fans, with How I Became a Superhero borrowing liberally from the tropes and broad strokes of things like The Boys, Watchmen and X-Men to name but three, so it’s hardly going to win any points for originality. That being said, if you can’t get enough of costumed crimefighters in any shape or form, then it’s a diverting and inoffensive entry to the ever-expanding canon, one that’s already rocketed to third place on the Netflix viewership charts in less than 48 hours.