5 Man Cave Lessons from Superheroes
Every boy grows into a man by learning from the best—and by best, I mean superheroes, of course! Reading dozens of comic books over the summer months, you gain an understanding of the troubles of the world in a safe environment, all while learning morals that apply to everyday life. So, how does this involve man caves? Well, these 5 man cave lessons from superheroes work just like the old comics do. They help you understand something basic about creating your own man space. Certain rules govern all sanctuaries, whether they belong to superheroes or an ordinary man!
While some clear differences exist between a man cave and a superhero hideout, the parallels that we can draw end up teaching you about man caves and their true purpose. Read this while you sit in your man cave or before you make your man cave plans and see just how much these lessons impact how you see your man cave. Now, let’s begin!
1) Give it Gadgets (Batman, the Batcave)
It makes sense that our first superhero man cave lesson comes from the inventor of man caves himself: Batman. Bruce Wayne sits upon a huge fortune, so he easily creates the perfect image of a man cave with a wave of his hand. Located underground, his choice of room gives basement man caves something to strive for, but this point covers a separate lesson entirely. Instead, we focus on his huge gadget emphasis. Originally meant to store his confidential information, it expanded into a huge headquarters that remain in the series to this day.
Obviously, the Batcave serves a functional purpose—it is a place of work, a place of secrecy, and a place of solitude. However, Wayne decks it out with all kinds of gadgets to improve his quality of life. It contains several entrances that require very little effort to open despite their hidden triggers. Its main focus, a huge supercomputer, contains state-of-the-art technology that rivals the defense setups of whole countries. A gym provides Batman with a way to improve his body without relying on his gadgets, but a research section ensures that his gadgets stay cutting-edge anyways. It even contains a dedicated crime lab.
So, the moral is? Deck out your cave with the latest and greatest gadgets to improve your quality of life.
2) Give it Solitude (Superman, Fortress of Solitude)
Built deep in the Arctic circle, Superman’s Fortress of Solitude serves as the ultimate separation from the rest of the world. With all kinds of dangerous technology, alien creatures, forbidden scientific knowledge, and even some hazardous materials, of course Superman and Doc Savage would need it as far away as possible from civilization. As an added bonus, he kept a space dedicated to his own accomplishments—something I recommend for every man to keep him centered in life. The only way to go in and out rested in the strength of Superman, and only other Kryptonians and Superman’s most trusted friends could enter or even know of its location.
The man cave functions as a sanctuary, so it makes sense that you need to distinguish it from the rest of the home. While we can’t build a shed in the arctic like Superman did, we can distinguish the space using man cave signs, unique decorations that would never fly in the rest of the house, and things that mark the room as yours. Furthermore, add in some features that increase your comfort. More than anything else, I recommend a good recliner to relax in.
Whether you watch TV, read a book, surf the net, or eat, that recliner will provide you with an incredibly cozy spot to look forward to. The most important lesson to take home is that a man cave should separate you from the stress and the troubles of the rest of the world so you can focus on yourself for a change.
3) Budget Doesn’t Matter (TMNT, Sewers)
I’m not sure if the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles count as superheroes, but I’m counting them anyways, because they are both super and heroes. They hang out in what we might consider the place of their birth (or, at least, mutation), along with their lifelong teacher. Depending on which era of TMNT you watch or play, their sewer contains different amenities. Basic electricity supplies a kitchen, television, lighting, and power tools. While normal sewers flood throughout the year, theirs seems to do just fine. There must be a drought going on.
The Ninja Turtles created their man cave on what amounts to a zero budget. They provide the bare basics for comfort and relaxation—a dojo, workshop, kitchen, and TV room—and manage to do so with sparse wallets. Rather than focus on renovating the area to look acceptable to others, they focus on working with the sewers and making them comfortable…for them alone! As a result, they end up with a neat man cave, and their visitors don’t seem to care about the setting too much.
Even when the world offers you a horrible situation, you can build your man cave in the crappiest of places with the tiniest budget. What matters is that you call it your man cave!
4) Invite Friends Over (Justice League, Hall of Justice)
Appearing all over the DC Universe, but popularized by the Justice League, the Hall of Justice serves as a headquarters for an assortment of heroes. Because it provides expensive specialized equipment—including a supercomputer on par with Batman’s, which makes sense, since he funded the building in some iterations—it helps a whole host of heroes do their jobs. It also serves as an embassy for other worlds and a cover for heroes who teleport across the world. It was based off of a train-station-turned-museum, which certainly inspires people who want to renovate their room into an awesome man cave.
But, rather than focus on the renovation aspect, let’s look at how this place functions. While one man usually builds and maintains his man cave, the Hall of Justice welcomes heroes from all over the world to enjoy its amenities. Opening up your man cave for others to relax in provides a huge benefit to your friends and community. Of course, you need to take precautions to ensure your stuff stays in your man cave intact, but sharing time with your friends in your favorite spot helps you relax in your favorite room and gives it even more purpose. Plus, how can you show off all your trophies and collections without someone else there?
5) Change is Good (Doctor Strange, Sanctum Sanctorum)
Unlike many superhero hideouts, Sanctum Sanctorum looks quite normal on the outside and blends in with other buildings. However, this innocent façade hides a constantly changing interior. As with many hideouts, it’s bigger on the inside. Unlike many hideouts, it contains a labyrinth of hallways, doors, and trinkets collected from across the realms. Many Marvel superheroes walk through its halls, but it truly belongs to Doctor Strange by all accounts. Most importantly for our inspection, the constant state of change creates a truly magical superhero hideout.
Lots of us build our man cave according to a plan, find it to our liking, and keep it like that for years. However, falling into this trap of a static room prevents you from drawing out the full potential of your man cave. Time passes and seasons change the world around us. Similarly, your man cave must move with the times. I’m not saying you need to constantly change the flooring or install new utilities, but I do think that adding new things to the room every now and then improves your man cave experience. On top of that, replacing old things keeps the room from becoming a cluttered mess. Even simple furniture rearrangement helps your room look new.
Using These 5 Man Cave Lessons from Superheroes
Ultimately, the superheroes that the world adores know exactly how to use their sanctuaries to their advantage. These lessons translate easily into how you build and manage your man cave. You add in tons of gadgets to improve your quality of life, keep it distinguished from the rest of the home, change things up every now and then, keep the budget safe for your wallet, and invite friends over from time to time. Superheroes offer far more advice than this concerning their man caves, but I will leave this list as-is for now.
These 5 man cave lessons from superheroes at least help you start upgrading your cave. It’s worth mentioning that the function of their hideouts differ in one huge way from man caves—they provide places of work, rather than relaxation. As you plan and build your man cave, remember that shouldering responsibility is essential to living a healthy life—but so is setting things aside for a moment and enjoying yourself. Rather than work like a hero, look into your hobbies and relax like a hero. Take these lessons to heart and find yourself enjoying your man cave in a whole new way!