It's not very often at Starburst that we report on stories that could be described as "heartwarming". Yes, we get stories we get a bit emotional about at times. We'll admit to getting a bit misty-eyed when we saw that photo of J.J. Abrams and everyone's favourite astromech droid the other day (wouldn't be the same without you, R2.) And we definitely had an emotional reaction of some sort when James Cameron announced that he was planning to churn out Avatar sequels until the end of time regardless of whether anyone actually wanted them. But proper heartwarming? Almost never.
Then something like this happens.
Five year old leukemia survivor Miles Scott was heading into San Francisco on Friday with his parents to, he thought, pick up a Batman costume. Before he knew it, he was being called into service as 'Batkid' by the city's Chief Of Police Greg Suhr to help save the city from a pair of pesky super criminals.
What unfolded was an extraordinary day. San Francisco transformed itself into Gotham City, with Miles, in full Batman costume, driven round (in a Batmobile naturally) by Batman, rescuing damsels in distress from train tracks, capturing the Riddler in the middle of a bank robbery and saving the San Francisco Giants mascot from the Penguin.
The day, organised by the charity Make A Wish, involved thousands of volunteers, the city's police department, mayor, chief of police, the US Justice Department (who handily prepared an indictment for the criminals), and the local media, who re-branded themselves with Gotham themed names for the day. Even the White House got in on the act, with President Obama recording a video message thanking the five year old for saving Gotham. More importantly, the event attracted the attention of Adam West, who tweeted "What a wonderful thing. Relieved that Gotham is safe again thanks to Miles"; Christian Bale - "what a wonderful day for the little fella! It’s just fantastic, seeing all those people who were out there to support it”; and Ben Affleck - "Best Batman ever."
The day ended with Miles receiving the keys to the city in front of a crowd of thousands of fans, as well as a framed edition of the Gotham City Chronicle (a renamed for the day San Francisco Chronicle) with the headline 'Batkid Saves City'.
So how's that for heartwarming? Oh Miles, if, at your next birthday party the clown turns up wearing a purple suit and a slightly homicidal look on his face, have a couple of batarangs at the ready.
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