Monday, 12 August 2013

It Doesn’t Make Sense

Superman crashing a car into a stone, with people running away.
In 1933 Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster created the comic book hero Superman and in 1938 they sold the character to Detective Comics (DC Comics). The first time that Superman appeared was in Action Comics #1 in June of 1938. In 2010 a copy of this comic sold for 1.5 million dollars. In 2013 a guy found a copy of Action comics #1 in the wall of his house and sold it for $175,000. Kind of makes me want to tear out the walls.

I have been a fan of Superman since I could look at the pictures of a man dressed in blue with a red cape who could fly. How I wanted to be Superman when I was a kid. I guess in some ways I still want to be Superman.

I can remember waking up suddenly feeling that I had dropped onto the bed from a height. I was sure that I had been hovering over the bed and when I was startled I woke up and dropped to the mattress. I could fly when I was unconscious, but not when I was awake. This was a problem for me if I wanted to be Superman. I would wake up in the morning with bruises, so I figured that I wasn’t Superman, I must be Batman. Batman is a poor substitute for Superman, but still he was fighting crime.
 
I have followed Superman in comics, the TV show with George Reeves from the fifties, and Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman in the 90’s. The show “Smallville” took up the gauntlet in the new century and although I watched it for the first few years, it is possible that I have grown out of weekly instalments of the man of steel.
 
I suffered through the silly comic book premises of the seventies with Krypto the Superdog, there was a Super cat, Supergirl, Bizzaro Superman and Jimmy Olsen even became super at one point. This kind of crap is what turned the movie makers to go back to Superman’s roots.
 
I liked the Superman I, II and III movies with Christopher Reeves and Brandon Routh in Superman Returns. I don’t look for a lot of complicated plot lines other than the world is in peril and eventually Superman will save the day. I am looking forward to seeing Man of Steel starring Henry Cavil. It should be a good one.
 
In preparation for seeing it, I decided that I should read the book that has been written from the screenplay. The cost of movies being what they are, I like to know what I am getting into. They say that this movie is a re-imagining of the Superman saga. I’m not worried about spoiling the movie for myself, because it is basically going to be about an alien baby that is sent to earth by his parents when the planet Krypton is going to explode. When he arrives on earth he is raised by a childless farm couple from Kansas. When he grows into adulthood he gets a job at the Daily Planet and fights for truth, justice and the American way.
 
I just finished reading this book and it seems that they are making Superman a little darker and more troubled than he has been in the past. It’s almost as if the writer and director want to straighten out some of the inconsistencies in Superman’s life. Like why no one recognizes him when he puts on a pair of glasses. How he managed not to kill anyone in high school or the day care centre. They are tweeking some of the facts. They explain why he has a big red “S” on his chest. It’s a family crest, but it still doesn’t explain why there isn’t a big red “E” on his chest, since he is from the “El” family.


It’s a fucking comic book! No one really cares about whether this could happen, we know it can’t. We suspended belief when the guy flew. I won’t even go into the heat/x-ray/ magnification eyes that he has, or why a rock from home makes him sick. I could understand if it were a Kryptonian peanut. 

If you read the book or see the movie, just enjoy and don’t worry if it makes sense. It doesn’t make sense.

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