Samaritan is a fictional character in the comic book series Astro City. Created by writer Kurt Busiek and artists Brent Anderson and Alex Ross, Samaritan is the premier superhero of the world, much in the vein of Superman and Captain Marvel. Despite his powers, however, the mind of the man called Samaritan is that of a weary and worn time-traveler with little time to himself and no future to return to.
In the dystopia future of the 35th century, a man was selected to go back in time to prevent a catastrophic event whose consequences ultimately ruined the future world. Launched into the timestream, he was caught up in empyrean fire, the strands of energy that make up time itself. Crash-landing near Astro City in late 1985, he spent the remainder of the year learning to master the empyrean forces that had suffused his body, and to alter it to change back to a more normal appearance (the empyrean forces had changed his hair to a bright shade of blue). Desperately working to control his powers, he succeeded barely in time to prevent the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster, the event he had been sent to amend. Upon placing the Challenger on the ground, he was besieged by the media, who pressed him for details on himself. Briefly dismissing himself as just "a Good Samaritan", he departed immediately to better figure things out.
Eventually deciding that he could do a lot of good with his powers, he added a cape to his outfit and took the name "Samaritan", basing himself in Astro City. Additionally, he used his Zyxometer, a living bio-computer shaped like a diamond with tentacle to create a civilian identity for himself as "Asa Martin" (an anagram of "Samaritan"), a fact-checker for Current, a newsmagazine based in Astro City. With the quiet his job affords, Martin has programmed the Zyxometer to do his daily duties at Current, enabling Samaritan to simultaneously continue performing his heroics and protecting the people. Unfortunately, this has caused Asa to appear to his colleagues as standoffish. His sense of duty has led to a similar problem as Samaritan, leading him to attempt to ameliorate it with what he considers non-essential activities. For example, he consents to attend dinners and banquets held in his honor, lest he seem arrogant by those he serves. The plaque and trophies given to him at these events end up in an alternate dimension, nicknamed "the Closet", that he can access.
The stress of his responsibilities have affected Samaritan as of late. With little time to himself, he often (though silently) grouses that the need to fly rapidly to various locations to stop crimes and prevent disasters leaves him little time to enjoy the sheer sensation of flight. He also frets over the fact that he cannot be omnipresent and deal with every problem that warrants his attention. His problems were further compounded when on a time-travel mission back to his home future, he discovered that saving the Challenger changed the timeline (as planned), turning the barren wastelands he'd come from into a prosperous near-utopia. However, this also resulted in a paradoxical future in which he never existed; thus, he has no home to which he could ever conceivably return.
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Links: Wikipedia Herocopia: Samaritan Official Astro City Website