Superman (Part 1)

-I'm a total Superman mark. 

   Since Saturday morning Super-Friends, in my Superman sleeping-bag, wearing my Superman footie-pajamas with the Velcro-on-cape...  I've never thought he was cheesy, lame, or corny-looking. The only two times in my life I was not reading Superman comics was during the Red/Blue fiasco... and now

   Needless to say I was not a fan of joyless slog that is The Man of Steel movie. No point in really getting into it all here- its faults have been gone over to death on sooo many sites since it came out. It has its fans and it has its haters... I can pretty much sum up my personal problems with it using this one sentence I read from one of the many debates over the film: "Superman is a paragon of heroic virtue- apparently no one involved in making Man of Steel was aware of this fact."  -It just wasn't a Superman movie.

 Anyways- moving on: I recently went back and reread all of the 2000/2001 era issues I have, for fun- and there were just a few random things I picked out that are relevant to the above without really even trying-
Let's call it: Three Things About Superman!

We'll start very simple...

I miss the trunks...
 ~Superman needs his trunks, Raodammit!
(from Superman #160 by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness)


 ~Superman takes battles out of populated areas.  
(The Adventures of Superman #581 by J.M. DeMatteis, Mike Miller, Jose Marzan Jr., & Walden Wong)

"Safer for everyone, he realizes, to keep the battle high..."
-To the desert, to over the ocean, to up in the sky, to outer-fucking-space... on The Moon even!
...And if/when he can't do that- there is always a line about how he checked to see (with his X-Ray Vision) that the building he throws through, or is thrown through, was empty... and even sometimes already marked for demolition anyways!  OR it's not- but he actually saves any/everyone from any damage or debris (and even fixes it!) because he's fucking SUPERMAN!
And if you think that's boring, or stupid- then that's fine.  -There are lots of other Superheros you can read about, or make a fucking movie about, who don't do things like that because they are NOT Superman!

And finally/most importantly:

The Joker kills... because he is a criminally insane "animal". We root for the villain to be as villainous and subhuman as possible because it makes it that much more satisfying when the hero takes them down:

That particular evil kind of took me off guard a little...
 (Superman #175 by Jeph Loeb and Ed McGuinness.)

Hell- even Krypto the Superdog tried to kill- because he does not know any better- he literally is an animal. That's why it was such a cool moment when he crushed/tore out Mongul's throat that one time.  
-Because he could: 

 ...and you can't really blame him for it.
(Superman #170 by Jeph Loeb and Dale Keown)

 However, when you have someone who is not evil... not insane, and who knows and strives for better- someone who is not an animal, and is in fact supposed to be your (super)hero, kill someone?  
-You have failed.   
And if that character happens to be Superman?  -You have failed doubly so... because that third thing about Superman is:


  1. All really good valid points King. I was kinda on the fence about the MoS movie. It was indeed pretty good up until he killed Zod. If they had really stressed that HE HAD TO DO IT, and show more how it went against his upbringing/farmer church values, maybe it would've translated better. But yeah, in the end, Superman doesn't kill. Nor does Batman. That's jiust how it works. No exceptions. They're even more heroic for not killing, Well at least in Superman's case. Batman's villains though is another story altogether. Any real city would've excuted those lunatics years ago.

    Good post King. Nice to know where you stand on things.
    Looking forward to part 2.

    1. Valid points, like I said- without even really trying... David S. Goyer has apparently never picked up a random Superman comic to read before.
      Yeah, Superman did not HAVE to do it. A better writer could have worked around that. -That was just laziness. Laziness as evidenced by the lack of showing that he simply HAD TO DO IT followed by no real consequence or dwelling on it afterwards... One of the only times he smiles in the entire movie is in a scene after all that. Come on...
      Yes: "That's just how it works, no exceptions. Superman is MORE heroic for not killing." -Thank you! "Well at least in Superman's case. Batman's villains, though- is another story altogether..." And that's what makes the entire Joker/Batman dynamic so very interesting... Batman will not stoop down to that level and that fuels The Joker to try ANYTHING to make it happen. The second Batman kills The Joker- then The Joker finally WINS! AND it's the absolute end of Batman. You've heard that theory about Batman: The Killing Joke, right? About how it's meant to be the last Batman story ever... Grant Morrison talks about it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8wQ2x0OKBjU You should check it out- it's only three minutes long...

  2. eh, we've had this debate before but i stand by what i said about Superman killing Zod. there's a great line in the movie Kingdom of Heaven, " . . . there will come a time where you will wish you had done a small evil for a greater good". Wonder Woman killed Maxwell Lord while he had Superman under his control and he literally dared her to do it. was Lord bluffing? does it matter? he put someone who had his life in their hands in an impossible situation, i say he had it coming and so did Zod. unlike Robocop or the Federation from Star Trek superheroes don't have a Directive 4 or a Prime Directive but even in those cases those directives have been broken on occasion. i don't want to see it be a regular thing nor do i have a problem with a superhero having a troubled conscience over it but once in a great while there are just some mother fuckers that gotta be put down. especially when you know for a fact it's gonna save innocent lives in the long run as well as in the immediate situation.

    1. And in the next Batman movie- Batman will be running around alleyways shooting criminals down with a Liefeld-ian amount of guns and ammo... because THAT'S not a violation of the character's principle core-beliefs or anything... *cough*

      Like I said; you wanna do THAT story- there are other characters to do it with who are not Superman. Wonder Woman for instance. -That was an awesome moment with Maxwell Lord. To me that made a great story... Wonder Woman is NOT Superman- she understands war. She is a brilliant tactician. She comes straight out of Greek myth and an entire island of warrior-women trained from birth to stab the enemy to death... with swords and stuff... not a stretch at all to see her actually kill someone. And the aftermath of that makes for a great story, with great potential for further character development and all of that...

      No, superheroes do not have a no-killing-parameter or prime-directive... but guess what? SUPERMAN DOES. That's the ENTIRE POINT of Superman! Killing is never the answer. There is always another way. Because we're better than that. We HAVE to be BETTER than that.

  3. you raise some good points about ethics as they apply to Wonder Woman as opposed to Superman. but at the end of the day here in 2014 I'm ok with Superman killing the piece of shit who murdered his father and was about to murder in cold blood a helpless family by burning them to death. that's just where I come up.

    1. That's fine and all- but people who are okay with that are obviously not fans of the character. And I guess that's just who they were making the movie for- this time around... I just think it's sad- because they could have done THAT move in another film with another character for all of you to like, and then made a more true Superman movie for the rest of us.
      -The biggest fault in Hollywood is their unnecessary reliance on name-recognition.

    2. you and shlomo bring up excellent points on one hand superman shouldnt kill with all the power he has he should be better than that but on the other hand Zod was gonna kill innocent people superman had to act fast and also where were they going to put Zod anyway in jail? IMO i think MOS was as is (with the sequels) going to show a man turning into that paragon of greatness that we all know and love and i think thats a better move in the long run P.S. great blog you got going on here

    3. Hey there, Thomas! Thanks for stopping by, and commenting!

      Yes, the way the movie was set up; that was the easiest out. I'm just saying it's bad writing. It's a complete misunderstanding of the character in general. Superman ALWAYS finds a way. (Just like Doctor Who!) And sometimes it comes at a cost, sometimes he will pay the price for it- but it's a price worth paying to be better than your villains, to not sink down to their level.

      As for where they could have jailed Zod? In a DC Universe/Zack Snyder film??? -Phantom Zone, space jail, underground plastic prison (no, wait- that was Magneto...), Star Labs designed prison cell with artificial red sunlight, The Pipeline, The Fortress of Solitude, Stryker's Island, Army-something-special-something... any would/could work.
      Hell, I would not have even minded if Superman straight up lobotomized Zod with his heat-vision. Something, anything other than out-of-character primitive murder!

      True, Superman Vs. Batman COULD save it. Especially if Superman is dealing with his killing, and maybe Batman comes in to lay some smack-down on him for that villainous action (as well as saving... no one? And endangering... EVERYONE in that battle.) Superman damn sure made himself look like a potential threat more than a symbol of hope! So... Only time will tell.

      But Man of Steel was still an awful movie overall, in general, in my opinion. My nerdy gripes about it notwithstanding- it was just boring... terrible dialogue and character development, bland story... joyless... cluttered... meh. And I like Zack Snyder!

      Anyways- hope you still enjoy the blog, and thanks again!

  4. @King: I did, and only people like Morrison believe that Batman killed the Joker at the end. He didn't. Clearly. As much as he was pushed, he didn't do it. They just shared a laugh, and Batman placing his hand on Joker's shoulder, was like to old friends joking around, having a moment. Hell, if they want further proof, look at the script. Nowhere at all, is it mentioned or hinted at. Even the artist, Brian Bolland says it didn't happen, and he should know since he drew it.

    As for the Superman debate.....well you can say Byrne made asuperman kill back in '86. It was preented that there were NO alternatives, not even a Phantom Zone to put em in, thus why he did what he did. But Suprman works best as the purist type of hero. I'm more a Batman guy myself(of course;) but yeah. Superman shouldn't kill. Period. Did Zod deserve to die? Fuck Yes. But that doesn't mean Supes had to be the one to do it. Could've found another way. I guess the excuse was that since he's so new at that point, to the gig of a superhero, he didn't have prior experience in those situations. Regardless, there were plenty of outs, but with today's audience, they wanted Superman to be grim and kill bitches. Or at least one.

    To each his own at the end of the day on this one.

    Speaking off tragedy, you still watching Arrow? It's getting damn good. Can't wait to see who makes it to the next season, 'cause people are dropping like flies.

    1. Oh, you're no fun!!! Hahaha! -I think it's fun to think about- it's ambiguous... and it makes a lot of sense. The "old friends- sharing a laugh, joking around- having a moment" aspect of the end NEVER sat right with me. Even Alan Moore has said it's "One of the worst things I've ever written."

      As for that Byrne issue you're talking about- Part 2, my friend... Part 2...

      But, yeah- Superman and "grim" or "dark" just does not compute! As for the lack of experience or being new- how he was raised should have helped him with that. That's another thing they horribly fucked up, though. Even if Superman did not kill Zod at the end- in my opinion- it was still a horrible movie anyways...

      Absolutely; to each their own with this- I just wanted my opinion on it finally down somewhere, and not in a random comment section someplace... Plus, just reading some random Superman comics- I found little things to illustrate my point, so I figured- well, that's a post!

      Yeah, I'm watching Arrow! Why didn't Diggle ask Skinny-Waller for The Squad's help with Deathstroke? Do you still think that will happen?
      I'm kind of hoping we get team Arrow, The Squad, Canary and whoever she brings in (The League, Merlin?), and The Flash- all in the last episode to defeat Deathstroke! I doubt it will happen- but how cool and comic-booky would that be?

  5. Did yo watch this week's episode? 'Cause that's exactly what happened, albeit him asking her to find Ollie. But trust me, the Squad/Team Arrow vs. Deathstroke and family is coming. In fact from the previews for next week, even Malcolm Merlyn's getting in on the act. Oh his reaction to Slade killing Moira should be damn interesting.

    I'm interested in how Part 2's going to go....

    Funny quotes about your site so far. Hey, no press is bad press, when they're talking about you right?;)

    1. Yeah- I saw it. That's exactly what happens except that's not what happens at all... sure.
      -That's why I'm saying: Why not ask her for help fighting him? Priorities much?
      Oh, and were you totally disappointed that Ollie's other base was just a shitty abandoned building basement and not cool looking at all? Because I was.
      But yeah- can't wait to see Merlyn back! -That will be an interesting reaction, for sure.
      Even though, over-all, I think it's a worse show; I've been enjoying the final episodes of S.H.I.E.L.D. more than I have been Arrow's...

      Feel free to give me a quote for the site- I'll use it!
      I have not forgotten about that guest-post either... I just have not had the time lately.