Last night I decided to watch Superman Returns. I saw it in the theater and absolutely loved it. After watching it last night, I found even more things to like about it, and a few things which kind of bothered me, not just about that movie, but the original movies as well.
First the thing that bothered me: Clark the “reporter.” We never see Clark, in this film, or the first two, really doing any journalism. In the comics, if I am not mistaken, when Superman gives Lois his interview and she turns it in to Perry, she finds out she was scooped by some hick reporter named Clark Kent. Anytime, she would try to get a Superman story, Clark would have it first. This helped to establish a relationship between the two characters.
As of now, Clark just pines after Lois and she basically looks past him at Superman. I always loved the idea of Superman using his powers to help himself get better stories than Lois, which in turn helped Lois want to interact with Clark. What a nice little circle we have there.
The second thing that bothered me was how they portrayed Lex Luthor. This was not Bryan Singer’s fault, but instead Richard Donner’s. But, in reality, it was not his fault either. The comics at the time pretty much showed Lex as some criminal mastermind who spent his time devising schemes to take over Metropolis.
I much rather have the Lex who is super rich, and seen as somewhat of a shady business man, but not evil. He also always believes he is doing what is right for mankind. I thought when he was saying about how Prometheus stealing fire, that his motivation was to help advance human technology, and also make money off it. Instead he was all about creating more land.
Two great stories that show how complex of a character Lex is, were Superman: Birthright and Lex Luthor: Man of Steel.
The first story, which I wish they would have made into a movie, focuses on Clark’s transformation into Superman. How after college he decided to do something amazing for mankind, and he wanted some kind of symbol, so he and his family create the Superman persona. It’s fun watching his mother teach him how to dress as Clark, to wear suits that are a little big, to slouch, to wear thick glasses, and wear his hair nerdy. Anyways, Lex is the richest man in Metropolis when Superman shows up, and he realizes that he is an alien from Krypton. Lex uses Superman’s coming to create a fake Kryptonian army that attacks Metropolis…anyways, I am not doing this story justice, so just read it yourself.
The second story, is about Lex and how he perceives himself. He sees himself as mankind’s savior and he is completely worried that if Superman is allowed to live and keep saving mankind, then man will never rise up and save themselves. During the story, we see Lex doing many things for the common man, giving scholarships to his janitor’s son, or insisting his employees call him Lex. You get to see a real human side to Lex. As I have said in my Heroes posts, what makes a great villain is that he does not believe he is a villain.
On to what I really enjoyed (aside from all the things I have told people about). The Jason angle. I know many people did not like the idea of Superman having a son, but I thought it was excellent. And I also started to think about why Jason may be so sickly.
If we ignore the fact that Kryponian DNA and Human DNA may not be too compatible, then we can have some fun. Jason’s partial human side probably cannot handle his Kryptonian side. The reason he has breathing problems, could be due to his arctic breath, which his weaker human lungs cannot handle. His skin probably does not absorb sunlight the same way as Superman’s, which could make him not as powerful/reliable…
I did not realize the first time I saw it, but after Superman is stabbed with kryptonite, and he flies up above the clouds and re-energizes and pretty much becomes “sun-drunk.” This happens in the comics at times, and is usually pretty funny because he is so powerful he cannot control himself. He usually has to try to come into contact with either Parasite, or kryptonite, in order to even himself out. This definitely helps explain how he was able to lift the landmass full of K-nite into space.
I hope most of you will enjoy this movie or will join in a discussion about the movie.