Spider-Man Al Masri

Spiderman has reached Egypt, but the tale is even darker than the version set in the New York. Photo: AP
Spiderman has reached Egypt, but the tale is even darker than the version set in the New York. Photo: AP

As superhero stories go, Spider-Man’s has a dark side: Peter Parker gets his amazing powers after being bitten by a radioactive spider in New York. He only becomes a do-gooder after the murder of his uncle. But the original seems like a utopian fairy tale compared to the version based in Cairo.

Hossam Atef, 20, an Egyptian photographer, depicted a man in a Spider-Man outfit going about life in Egypt. He takes public transport, drives a tuk-tuk, hangs out his washing and even kicks back on a rooftop with shisha. Mr Atef’s offerings have gained a cult following with young people in Egypt and throughout the Arab world.

What resonates is probably the depiction of the everyday struggles in countries like Egypt, where life has become complex and often, downright difficult in the years since the Arab Spring uprisings. As Mr Atef explained: “Superheroes would not be able to survive here.”

Published: December 14, 2014 04:00 AM

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