Parents of children, 240 children actually, were interviewed about their child’s relationship with superhero characters, and they were also asked about their child’s personality, down to temper and aggression. The study, conducted by Sarah Coyne, a family life professor from Brigham Young University in Utah, discovered that children who are fans of superheros – any of them – are more aggressive, physically (kicking, biting, hitting, etc) and with relationships (more likely to exclude kids from group activities, withdrawing friendship, etc).
The study also discovered that, despite conventional thought that superheros teach children how to include and defend others, kids who are fans of superheros actually are no more likely to defend another child (from bullies) than one who doesn’t watch any superhero content.
To put it into the most simple terms, as Sarah says, “kids pick up on the aggressive themes and not the defending ones.”
There’s a lot of really great information in the study, which you can see here on Science Daily.