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Old 11-28-2011, 03:04 AM   #26
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

You know, I"m not taking a jab at anyone or any comic book character, but personally, it drives me crazy at some points whenever I keep coming across comments where people say that Superman is totally unrelatable to us.

Granted, the kryptonian origin part and super powers are the things that separate us from him, along with his high morals and great personality.lol, but based on a lot of issues that I've read and heard about, there are a lot more things about the character that people imho, seem to miss out on.

The concept/version where he feels alienated throughout his youth due to his inability to figure out where he's from and who/what he is...is something that I'm fairly sure a good amount of people have felt (though in a different context) in their youth..of feeling alienated from others because they were considered "different' from the majority.

The desire to settle down and have a family of your own is another thing that I'm sure a lot of us have had or still have.

The struggle in not letting your own abilities get the best of you and enlarge your ego in the process.

Wondering if you're doing the right thing for everyone... or feeling afraid that people not accept you for you you are.



And before anyone brings up the whole "this is not how the character was originally conceived" argument as usual.... I'm talking about the interpretations of the character throughout the ages, not just one particular vision...since many iconic characters have been defined based on not only one interpretation of their characters.

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Old 11-28-2011, 04:37 AM   #27
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

IMO anyone who thinks ANY character ever created is 'unrelatable' simply lacks in imagination, empathy and any attempt to understand the character in question.

They are all personalities created by human writers, and so any attributes they have should not be beyond our capacity to relate to.

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Old 11-28-2011, 01:06 PM   #28
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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IMO anyone who thinks ANY character ever created is 'unrelatable' simply lacks in imagination, empathy and any attempt to understand the character in question.
That's a fine belief, but you should probably also come to terms with the fact that the general public lacks imagination and empathy.

Some characters are easier to relate to than others. It simply requires more brainpower, if nothing else, to see oneself in, say, an average high schooler like Peter Parker than a cosmic entity like the Silver Surfer. To relate to the former, we need only to access our recent memory, and perhaps a basic understand of what a Spider is. To relate to the latter, we need to conceptualize things like 'The Power Cosmic' and 'Galactus' If the concept that you are requiring someone to imagine and empathize with is not one their interested in accepting, then you have a character who is 'unrelatable' to the masses.

Also, by saying all characters are equally relatable, you take a lot of credit from amazing creators who make automatons or inanimate objects empathetic and layered and emotionally resonant, and take away blame from bad writers who write non-sensical storylines and characters, by saying Wall-E and Woody are no more relatable than Larry Gigli or Jar Jar Binks.

To be back on topic. Superman requires the understanding and acceptance of a sizable concept: The Ultimate Superhero. He kinda does everything, powers wise, both physically, energy projection, certainly morally and even mentally in some incarnations. Some people don't want 'the ultimate superhero,' they want someone who sucks who has to earn their way to uberness, and so they reject superman, emotionaly, out of hand.

The key, of course, is to show how Superman is the ultimate hero, that he comes from humble origins and such, who just happens to be a superhero. But there's no doubt, illustrating all this sci-fi and space-travel and the new perspective that comes with seeing through walls and moving at the speed of sound constantly... there's no doubt making all that work is *harder* than showing a rich kid getting angry, then humbled, then slowly building his powerbase.

That doesn't mean it can't be done, and I would even argue the payoff is much bigger, but it is harder. The characters are not equally relatable, just because they are both relatable.

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Old 11-28-2011, 01:23 PM   #29
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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That's a fine belief, but you should probably also come to terms with the fact that the general public lacks imagination and empathy.

Some characters are easier to relate to than others. It simply requires more brainpower, if nothing else, to see oneself in, say, an average high schooler like Peter Parker than a cosmic entity like the Silver Surfer. To relate to the former, we need only to access our recent memory, and perhaps a basic understand of what a Spider is. To relate to the latter, we need to conceptualize things like 'The Power Cosmic' and 'Galactus' If the concept that you are requiring someone to imagine and empathize with is not one their interested in accepting, then you have a character who is 'unrelatable' to the masses.

Also, by saying all characters are equally relatable, you take a lot of credit from amazing creators who make automatons or inanimate objects empathetic and layered and emotionally resonant, and take away blame from bad writers who write non-sensical storylines and characters, by saying Wall-E and Woody are no more relatable than Larry Gigli or Jar Jar Binks.

To be back on topic. Superman requires the understanding and acceptance of a sizable concept: The Ultimate Superhero. He kinda does everything, powers wise, both physically, energy projection, certainly morally and even mentally in some incarnations. Some people don't want 'the ultimate superhero,' they want someone who sucks who has to earn their way to uberness, and so they reject superman, emotionaly, out of hand.

The key, of course, is to show how Superman is the ultimate hero, that he comes from humble origins and such, who just happens to be a superhero. But there's no doubt, illustrating all this sci-fi and space-travel and the new perspective that comes with seeing through walls and moving at the speed of sound constantly... there's no doubt making all that work is *harder* than showing a rich kid getting angry, then humbled, then slowly building his powerbase.

That doesn't mean it can't be done, and I would even argue the payoff is much bigger, but it is harder. The characters are not equally relatable, just because they are both relatable.
I'm not saying that you don't relate more to some characters than others. Obviously, I can relate in an obvious way to a character of my gender and age, in similar situations to my life.

I'm just saying that there is no such thing as an 'unrelatable' character.

Even those people in the audience who might find Superman LESS relatable than Spiderman, can relate to him on some level.

He's got desires, emotions, friends, family, a childhood, issues of being an orphan and an outsider.

And he's a hero, on the inside AND in his actions - which I think makes him relatable to everyone who has ever WANTED to be a better person.

James T Kirk isn't unrelatable because of the sci-fi elements of the Star Trek story. Just the same as Luke Skywalker isn't unrelatable because he can 'use the force' and fights with lightsabers.

Relatability is dependant on characterisation and an emotional connection with the audience. Not on how 'far out' the world of the character is.

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Old 11-28-2011, 03:35 PM   #30
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

What would I do if I were superman?....I think that question alone, makes you relate if not ponder how cool it would be to be superman

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Old 11-30-2011, 01:56 PM   #31
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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I'm not saying that you don't relate more to some characters than others. Obviously, I can relate in an obvious way to a character of my gender and age, in similar situations to my life.

I'm just saying that there is no such thing as an 'unrelatable' character.

Even those people in the audience who might find Superman LESS relatable than Spiderman, can relate to him on some level.

He's got desires, emotions, friends, family, a childhood, issues of being an orphan and an outsider.

And he's a hero, on the inside AND in his actions - which I think makes him relatable to everyone who has ever WANTED to be a better person.

James T Kirk isn't unrelatable because of the sci-fi elements of the Star Trek story. Just the same as Luke Skywalker isn't unrelatable because he can 'use the force' and fights with lightsabers.

Relatability is dependant on characterisation and an emotional connection with the audience. Not on how 'far out' the world of the character is.
Well I agree that there's no such thing as a totally unrelatable character. What I'm trying to illustrate is that some characters require a mental step that the audience isn't willing to take. That will cause them to be perceived as 'unrelatable' by that audience. I think we're totally agreeing, but the way I would put it, it's more than just characterization, there is a skill in introducing 'far out' concepts in a way that is anchored in the characterization.

Funny enough, it's superman's morality that is often perceived as not being born out of his characterization... typically by a throng of cynics who simply don't believe in being a better person, even if they wanted to be at one time. The other complaint I hear a lot is that Superman's powers solve the vast majority of personal problems.

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Old 11-30-2011, 02:17 PM   #32
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

The conflict that is interesting here is whether or not Superman should be a savior to a people who will likely never truly appreciate his help, always expecting more, and whether or not he will be able to be (or be willing to be) that symbol of good and hope that can pervade throughout society and help man help themselves. That is the truly interesting story, if told as though Superman had human thoughts, reactions, feelings. I agree with hopefulsuicide that every character can be related to just as well as the next, it just depends how you depict that. In many ways that's what makes a strong work of art - it is the manner of the depiction that is truly impressive, not simply the content. I feel pretty confident Nolan/Goyer found the source of this character's being.

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Old 11-30-2011, 04:31 PM   #33
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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Well I agree that there's no such thing as a totally unrelatable character. What I'm trying to illustrate is that some characters require a mental step that the audience isn't willing to take. That will cause them to be perceived as 'unrelatable' by that audience. I think we're totally agreeing, but the way I would put it, it's more than just characterization, there is a skill in introducing 'far out' concepts in a way that is anchored in the characterization.

Funny enough, it's superman's morality that is often perceived as not being born out of his characterization... typically by a throng of cynics who simply don't believe in being a better person, even if they wanted to be at one time. The other complaint I hear a lot is that Superman's powers solve the vast majority of personal problems.
I think your right actually.

It is hard for people to relate to a good person, with no bad boy streak, no chequered past, no selfishness/arrogance/high school boy style fear/troubles to overcome before you eventually, maybe even reluctantly, become a hero...

I guess I just wish it wasn't.

When I look at Superman, in terms of his morality, his choices, his dedication to his 'idea' of being a superhero... I DON'T see something unrealistic.

Because I think, if I were given the chance, I would do the same. Or at least, I hope I would, and I can imagine how it would feel, how wonderful it could be and at the same time what a sacrifice it would be.

I mean, if I was to wake up in the morning with Super Powers, I would try so hard to follow Superman's example... not Spiderman's or Batman's or anyone elses. Because he's the best you can hope to achieve. He is the highest point of heroism a person can get IMO. There is no hero who is MORE heroic than him.

I guess most people just stop at the very idea of being a Superhero that has all that power with no history of abusing it, and think 'Come on... there's no way you wouldn't have used your x-ray vision to have a peak'.

As for his power's solving personal problems... I really don't see how

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I think back to my father. As a farmer, he had a natural understanding for the Earth. I remember him telling me this world is capable of providing for all its creatures. Even now, with so many more people, there exists enough food for everyone.

"The problem," Pa used to say, "is people. As far back as we go, we've always had problems with sharing. Seems everyone's too busy holding on to what they've got to care how their neighbors are doing."


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Old 11-30-2011, 04:38 PM   #34
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

Personally, i think one good internal struggle that they could apply to Superman's character arc through any franchise would be..him having to control himself from doing "too much" for people...in knowing on when he has to place that line that he can't cross in front of him when it comes to using his powers to help people since it could be so easy for someone with his powers to later become corrupted into thinking that they should do more in a dictator type of way as a means towards helping humanity from their perspective.

And given that we're not handling a complete messiah-Christ-Golden Age version of Superman here where his mindset is absolutely flawless like some would say.lol, it'd be natural for superman to have to struggle with something like this

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Old 11-30-2011, 04:48 PM   #35
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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Personally, i think one good internal struggle that they could apply to Superman's character arc through any franchise would be..him having to control himself from doing "too much" for people...in knowing on when he has to place that line that he can't cross in front of him when it comes to using his powers to help people since it could be so easy for someone with his powers to later become corrupted into thinking that they should do more in a dictator type of way as a means towards helping humanity from their perspective.

And given that we're not handling a complete messiah-Christ-Golden Age version of Superman here where his mindset is absolutely flawless like some would say.lol, it'd be natural for superman to have to struggle with something like this
Agreed.

Which I think Zod as a villain provides the perfect way of showing.

With him giving us the very example of what happens when you DON'T have that control, it's much easier to see why Superman makes that decision.

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I think back to my father. As a farmer, he had a natural understanding for the Earth. I remember him telling me this world is capable of providing for all its creatures. Even now, with so many more people, there exists enough food for everyone.

"The problem," Pa used to say, "is people. As far back as we go, we've always had problems with sharing. Seems everyone's too busy holding on to what they've got to care how their neighbors are doing."


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Old 12-02-2011, 01:13 PM   #36
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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Agreed.

Which I think Zod as a villain provides the perfect way of showing.

With him giving us the very example of what happens when you DON'T have that control, it's much easier to see why Superman makes that decision.
Yeah, I'm not at all a fan of the Christ-like portrayal of Superman. If anything, I'd have to agree with Grant Morrison (as he described the character in the Action Comics # 2 behind the scenes interview) that Superman, as originally conceived by his creators, is more of a Herculean classical hero. Flawed and human. Hercules is actually a great comparison for Superman. Half Human/Half God - child of two worlds, not sure which one he fits in and how. And its a portrayal I don't think anyone can claim is deconstructionist since it's truly CLASSICAL.

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Old 12-02-2011, 02:31 PM   #37
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I was just reading the last page and the whole Superman should feel bad/ Superman should laugh it off argument and I think Hopefulsuicide has got the right idea going on. In fact I think you have maybe have got one of the best insights into Superman on here. It's always good to see someone else who actually knows the character and knows what would and wouldn't be appropriate for him.

About the laughing thing... Superman isn't Metro Man, he isn't a caricature and he isn't a cartoon. He is a real life example of what could happen if a man was born on a different planet and was raised and a morally good person by his adoptive parents.

To me the whole thing should feel as real and 'realistic' as possible. That this is what would really happen if a Krytonian was on earth and was raised by good people. I would find Superman less easy to relate to if he didn't care at-all. If having the powers means getting one up on everyone else and he uses his status simply to scare people.

To me, I think the fear of who he is should be something that is always deep inside him but that he constantly tries to hide. That becoming Superman is one of the scariest things he could do, but also one of the most liberating.

I think if he found people were scared of him and wanted him gone he wouldn't go off to brood, he wouldn't start crying, he wouldn't laugh in their faces, he would be hurt inside but not let it show then he would continue to try and win over support.

That he shouldn't expect them to accept him straight away but he is willing to wait however long he has to before they accept him.

This has nothing to do with his sense of humor. He still has a good sense of humor, obviously. It's just his acceptance is quite a delicate subject to him.

Anyone can relate who has had something different about themselves and are afraid people won't accept who they are. You don't run off and cry if they don't, but you don't just stand there laughing either (I mean you might, it depends on who you are.) But Superman is a sincere person, he always has been the most sincere hero of all.

He just wants acceptance.

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Old 12-02-2011, 07:27 PM   #38
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I was just reading the last page and the whole Superman should feel bad/ Superman should laugh it off argument and I think Hopefulsuicide has got the right idea going on. In fact I think you have maybe have got one of the best insights into Superman on here. It's always good to see someone else who actually knows the character and knows what would and wouldn't be appropriate for him.
Thank you

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About the laughing thing... Superman isn't Metro Man, he isn't a caricature and he isn't a cartoon. He is a real life example of what could happen if a man was born on a different planet and was raised and a morally good person by his adoptive parents.

To me the whole thing should feel as real and 'realistic' as possible. That this is what would really happen if a Krytonian was on earth and was raised by good people. I would find Superman less easy to relate to if he didn't care at-all. If having the powers means getting one up on everyone else and he uses his status simply to scare people.

To me, I think the fear of who he is should be something that is always deep inside him but that he constantly tries to hide. That becoming Superman is one of the scariest things he could do, but also one of the most liberating.

I think if he found people were scared of him and wanted him gone he wouldn't go off to brood, he wouldn't start crying, he wouldn't laugh in their faces, he would be hurt inside but not let it show then he would continue to try and win over support.

That he shouldn't expect them to accept him straight away but he is willing to wait however long he has to before they accept him.

This has nothing to do with his sense of humor. He still has a good sense of humor, obviously. It's just his acceptance is quite a delicate subject to him.

Anyone can relate who has had something different about themselves and are afraid people won't accept who they are. You don't run off and cry if they don't, but you don't just stand there laughing either (I mean you might, it depends on who you are.) But Superman is a sincere person, he always has been the most sincere hero of all.

He just wants acceptance.
Couldn't agree more, especially with the bolded parts

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I think back to my father. As a farmer, he had a natural understanding for the Earth. I remember him telling me this world is capable of providing for all its creatures. Even now, with so many more people, there exists enough food for everyone.

"The problem," Pa used to say, "is people. As far back as we go, we've always had problems with sharing. Seems everyone's too busy holding on to what they've got to care how their neighbors are doing."


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Old 12-05-2011, 10:43 AM   #39
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I've nominated this thread for Thread of the Year! Let's get some support behind it. This is one of the best out there.

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Old 12-05-2011, 11:19 AM   #40
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I've nominated this thread for Thread of the Year! Let's get some support behind it. This is one of the best out there.
It truly is krumm....I wouldn't be surprised if Henry pops his head in here every now and then.....

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Old 12-05-2011, 12:02 PM   #41
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I've nominated this thread for Thread of the Year! Let's get some support behind it. This is one of the best out there.
I was literally just about to do this, was just checking the date of it!

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I think back to my father. As a farmer, he had a natural understanding for the Earth. I remember him telling me this world is capable of providing for all its creatures. Even now, with so many more people, there exists enough food for everyone.

"The problem," Pa used to say, "is people. As far back as we go, we've always had problems with sharing. Seems everyone's too busy holding on to what they've got to care how their neighbors are doing."


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Old 12-05-2011, 01:07 PM   #42
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Hmm I didn't think about that. Is it eligible?

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Old 12-07-2011, 11:53 PM   #43
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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I was just reading the last page and the whole Superman should feel bad/ Superman should laugh it off argument and I think Hopefulsuicide has got the right idea going on. In fact I think you have maybe have got one of the best insights into Superman on here. It's always good to see someone else who actually knows the character and knows what would and wouldn't be appropriate for him.

About the laughing thing... Superman isn't Metro Man, he isn't a caricature and he isn't a cartoon. He is a real life example of what could happen if a man was born on a different planet and was raised and a morally good person by his adoptive parents.

To me the whole thing should feel as real and 'realistic' as possible. That this is what would really happen if a Krytonian was on earth and was raised by good people. I would find Superman less easy to relate to if he didn't care at-all. If having the powers means getting one up on everyone else and he uses his status simply to scare people.
Metro Man is just a well meaning, but egotistical, fame-obsessed dork. There's nothing unrealistic about his personality. The only thing cartoonish about him (his powers) applies equally to Superman.

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To me, I think the fear of who he is should be something that is always deep inside him but that he constantly tries to hide. That becoming Superman is one of the scariest things he could do, but also one of the most liberating.
Why? So we'll pity him? I personally am getting extremely tired of this seemingly mandatory requirement that every character, especially heroes, be made pitiful.

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I think if he found people were scared of him and wanted him gone he wouldn't go off to brood, he wouldn't start crying, he wouldn't laugh in their faces, he would be hurt inside but not let it show then he would continue to try and win over support.

That he shouldn't expect them to accept him straight away but he is willing to wait however long he has to before they accept him.

This has nothing to do with his sense of humor. He still has a good sense of humor, obviously. It's just his acceptance is quite a delicate subject to him.

Anyone can relate who has had something different about themselves and are afraid people won't accept who they are. You don't run off and cry if they don't, but you don't just stand there laughing either (I mean you might, it depends on who you are.) But Superman is a sincere person, he always has been the most sincere hero of all.
There's a great action sequence in Action Comics #21, where Ultra-Humanite sends Superman to rob a jewel from a museum in order to save the life of a doctor Ultra has kidnapped. The police and National Guard attack Superman with everything they've got, from cannons to bomber planes. And throughout it all, Superman is nothing but caustic bravado and mocking wisecracks at their expense. Far from there being many signs that his feelings are hurt at the idea that they think he's a menace that must be stopped or the terrible destruction being wrought over the evil schemes of Ultra, he seems to be enjoying himself a good deal.

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He just wants acceptance.
I'd stick with him just wanting the triumph of truth, justice and the American way.

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Old 12-08-2011, 05:15 AM   #44
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There's a great action sequence in Action Comics #21, where Ultra-Humanite sends Superman to rob a jewel from a museum in order to save the life of a doctor Ultra has kidnapped. The police and National Guard attack Superman with everything they've got, from cannons to bomber planes. And throughout it all, Superman is nothing but caustic bravado and mocking wisecracks at their expense. Far from there being many signs that his feelings are hurt at the idea that they think he's a menace that must be stopped or the terrible destruction being wrought over the evil schemes of Ultra, he seems to be enjoying himself a good deal.
That IS great. In the context of a comic in the 40's.

And as I've said before, Superman responding to people being afraid of him by chuckling and saying 'Ha Ha, oh let's not be silly, I'm nothing to be afraid of' very much sounds like something that would have been at home in George Reeves 'Adventures of Superman'.

But it doesn't fit in a modern re telling on the big screen.

Storytelling has evolved beyond that kind of innocent frivolity even in the comics, let alone the films.

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I think back to my father. As a farmer, he had a natural understanding for the Earth. I remember him telling me this world is capable of providing for all its creatures. Even now, with so many more people, there exists enough food for everyone.

"The problem," Pa used to say, "is people. As far back as we go, we've always had problems with sharing. Seems everyone's too busy holding on to what they've got to care how their neighbors are doing."


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Old 12-08-2011, 06:18 PM   #45
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

^Then my role shall be to champion and revive that innocent frivolity.

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Old 12-08-2011, 11:09 PM   #46
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

In my own opinion, it's my belief that in the interpretations that deal with Superman wanting to inspire hope amongst humanity with his actions, that he would be concerned at first if people were afraid of him...well the good people at least.lol, because how can a person inspire hope if people are constantly afraid of you due to your alien heritage?

And, if you put a modern and realistic take on it as well, you could say that this fear also stems from having grown up in his life feeling a bit alienated from people because of how no one else was like him.

It doesn't have to be played in a angst way at all.

I've said it many times that they could approach giving Superman's/Clark Kent's character inner but realistic struggles that doesn't involve him going all Peter Parker...Bruce Wayne like.

And you know what, the thing that still makes Superman great is that even if he were to be met with such harsh criticism from people..that wouldn't stop him from wanting to help people. Whether it be out in the open or doing it in super speed fashion, he'd still go out and help people if he thought he could make a difference because he has a good innate heart.

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Old 12-09-2011, 06:07 AM   #47
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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^Then my role shall be to champion and revive that innocent frivolity.
Hey I'll back you up on that, don't get me wrong. Especially in kids tv shows/cartoons.

Everythings just gotten so dark and serious... If superheroes can't even be innocent and frivolous in something aimed at children, there is something very wrong with the world!

I just think that tone should be avoided in this reboot specifically.

MOS needs to be as thought provoking as BB/TDK, as successful at introducing as to the hero's 'home world' as Thor, as succesful at portraying a born hero as Captain America, as current events relevant as Iron Man, and the most visually stunning superhero film to ever grace our screens (without being too dark or weirdly filtered).

Hmmm, maybe I'm expecting a bit too much

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Old 12-12-2011, 01:50 PM   #48
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

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I think your right actually.

It is hard for people to relate to a good person, with no bad boy streak, no chequered past, no selfishness/arrogance/high school boy style fear/troubles to overcome before you eventually, maybe even reluctantly, become a hero...

I guess I just wish it wasn't.

When I look at Superman, in terms of his morality, his choices, his dedication to his 'idea' of being a superhero... I DON'T see something unrealistic.

Because I think, if I were given the chance, I would do the same. Or at least, I hope I would, and I can imagine how it would feel, how wonderful it could be and at the same time what a sacrifice it would be.

I mean, if I was to wake up in the morning with Super Powers, I would try so hard to follow Superman's example... not Spiderman's or Batman's or anyone elses. Because he's the best you can hope to achieve. He is the highest point of heroism a person can get IMO. There is no hero who is MORE heroic than him.

I guess most people just stop at the very idea of being a Superhero that has all that power with no history of abusing it, and think 'Come on... there's no way you wouldn't have used your x-ray vision to have a peak'.

As for his power's solving personal problems... I really don't see how
Exactly. I'm not too mad at the masses though. I'd wager most people nowadays don't know real life moral people personally, so Superman's choices, which they haven't been exposed to nearly as much as his power set, don't resonate.

I think, Smallville, though, *did* get some things very right, especially in the early seasons about Clark's journey from someone with high school boy-like fear, who has a very rational reaction to a hefty destiny. The plotting of the show was meh, but the early character arc was good. He did abuse his powers, and he learned, the hard way not to, and I think that's good for the character. He's not Jesus. He doesn't have to be sinless all his life, he just has to learn by the time he becomes an adult.

But even the cynics have some kernel of truth in their madness. Everyone has flaws, even good people, and in order to be relatable to the rest of us, who have flaws, one has to have them. I suspect that if we create an easily relatable character without flaws, people will find flaws in the character so that we can relate to them. And they will find them, because the character itself is created/written by flawed individuals. Superman is overprotective. Superman is sensitive on certain issues. Superman is loyal to a genuine fault. There are others you can add on without him being a 'bad boy' or having non flaws like 'works too hard' or external problems like 'lonely,' or worse, flaws an audience derives like 'Arrogance' or 'Aloofness.'

Without those genuine flaws, Superman is well equipped to handle mundane day to day stressors. Money constraints, time constraints, legal consequences, in and of themselves all meaningless for the Man of Steel.

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Old 12-19-2011, 05:40 AM   #49
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

Curious to ask folks;


Given that from what I've seen of the Nolan Batman Franchise so far, it seems like Bruce Wayne in that given world had only created Batman with the notion that he would hang up the cowl and cape once he was able to liberate Gotham from the factors that were plaguing it in crimes and injustice.

So, if we go by that notion, do you guys think that Superman in this franchise will start off thinking that there will be a "end" to his career as a hero and that he'll be able to settle down in a "normal" life at some point?

Or do you guys see this being a different case because, unlike Batman, Superman won't have the misfortune of feeling battered and bruise after several years of crimefighting, and should his goal be towards changing just Metropolis or the entire world itself?

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Old 12-19-2011, 07:53 AM   #50
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization - Part 1

It's definitely different.

I mean, a massive part of being Superman is simply saving innocent people - whether from criminals or natural disasters. And it's not like he goes in thinking that is one day going to stop happening... there will ALWAYS be natural disasters, even if you get rid of all the criminals.

So people will ALWAYS need his help.

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I think back to my father. As a farmer, he had a natural understanding for the Earth. I remember him telling me this world is capable of providing for all its creatures. Even now, with so many more people, there exists enough food for everyone.

"The problem," Pa used to say, "is people. As far back as we go, we've always had problems with sharing. Seems everyone's too busy holding on to what they've got to care how their neighbors are doing."


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