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Old 06-12-2011, 07:19 AM   #1
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:19 AM   #2
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Old 06-12-2011, 07:19 AM   #3
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Not really, or at least that's not what I read it for. Superheroes live and act in a world much more like ours than the wizard world of Harry Potter or Middle Earth of Lord of the Rings. This is an important difference to me. This means superheroes can deal with real-world issues far more often than escapist fantasy franchises, which interests me much more than, say, the quest to destroy the One Ring.
Yeah but they really dont deal with every day issues. They deal with alien gods, robots, crazy clowns, clay monsters, plant ladies, ancient witches, etc.

Sure there can be stories about Superman dealing with wife beaters and social stuff like that, but as JMS' run has proved people are not interested for that in a Superman book. So yes there can be some social commentary, but 99,9999% its stories where Superman fights Brainiac, Batman fights Scarecrow, etc which are superhero escapist stories.

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Old 06-12-2011, 09:38 AM   #4
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Yeah but they really dont deal with every day issues. They deal with alien gods, robots, crazy clowns, clay monsters, plant ladies, ancient witches, etc.

Sure there can be stories about Superman dealing with wife beaters and social stuff like that, but as JMS' run has proved people are not interested for that in a Superman book. So yes there can be some social commentary, but 99,9999% its stories where Superman fights Brainiac, Batman fights Scarecrow, etc which are superhero escapist stories.
Superman can fight a giant robot and still have a deeper scope than escapism. It doesn't have to be all about everyday life issues. As I said, good serious story plus super-powers.

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Old 06-12-2011, 11:08 AM   #5
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Yeah, to be honest... I don't mind everyday issues creeping into a Superman story here and there, but at the end of the day, I watch these movies or read comics to escape from reality. The more fantastical the better, just as long as it's not something so asinine that it makes me facepalm (most of the stories with Mxy fall into that category with me, because I hate him).

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Old 06-12-2011, 08:36 PM   #6
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So... has anyone seen those "Return to Krypton" scenes from SR that were released? Just watched the bootleg of it over on CBM. Despite the fact that the person who filmed it apparently has Parkinson's, the scenes were pretty cool, IMO. Not sure why Singer left them out of the film... I think they actually worked really well.

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Old 06-12-2011, 09:10 PM   #7
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Yeah but they really dont deal with every day issues. They deal with alien gods, robots, crazy clowns, clay monsters, plant ladies, ancient witches, etc.

Sure there can be stories about Superman dealing with wife beaters and social stuff like that, but as JMS' run has proved people are not interested for that in a Superman book. So yes there can be some social commentary, but 99,9999% its stories where Superman fights Brainiac, Batman fights Scarecrow, etc which are superhero escapist stories.
Generally, superheroes live in a world like ours. Superheroes, such as Superman, are better categorized as science-fiction. Escapist fantasy is about just that, escaping to a different world, a magical world. While the DCU is quite different from the real world, it still has cities, nations, economic systems, technology, governments, and businesses like our world. There are real places and people in the DC and Marvel universes, and they can often come up in the story. These things don't exist in escapist fantasy. This is a big difference to me. You would never see the US Army being tasked to stop a monster in Lord of the Rings. I don't read escapist fantasy, but I do read science-fiction.

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Superman can fight a giant robot and still have a deeper scope than escapism. It doesn't have to be all about everyday life issues. As I said, good serious story plus super-powers.
Agreed.

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Old 06-12-2011, 10:01 PM   #8
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So I guess you can't classify Harry Potter under that genre either considering all those things can be found in the books.

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Old 06-12-2011, 10:28 PM   #9
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Generally, superheroes live in a world like ours. Superheroes, such as Superman, are better categorized as science-fiction. Escapist fantasy is about just that, escaping to a different world, a magical world. While the DCU is quite different from the real world, it still has cities, nations, economic systems, technology, governments, and businesses like our world. There are real places and people in the DC and Marvel universes, and they can often come up in the story. These things don't exist in escapist fantasy. This is a big difference to me. You would never see the US Army being tasked to stop a monster in Lord of the Rings. I don't read escapist fantasy, but I do read science-fiction.
I think you dont know what escapism means. Just because the DCU is a lot similar to our world than LOTR, it doesnt mean that when you re reading a Superman story you re not reading about a guy in a cape punching alien robots, but instead you re reading social commentary. Cape comics are the epitome of escapism, whether its sci-fi, mythology, or detective stories. You re escaping your daily routine.

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Old 06-12-2011, 11:23 PM   #10
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I think you dont know what escapism means. Just because the DCU is a lot similar to our world than LOTR, it doesnt mean that when you re reading a Superman story you re not reading about a guy in a cape punching alien robots, but instead you re reading social commentary. Cape comics are the epitome of escapism, whether its sci-fi, mythology, or detective stories. You re escaping your daily routine.
I never said that superheroes are social commentary by definition. By your defintion, nearly all of fiction is escapism. Anyway, I don't read superhero comics for escapist fantasy, I read them for the characters. I don't read Superman to see him punching alien robots, I read Superman because Superman is an interesting character and concept. I don't read Batman to see Batman punch some douchebag in the face, I read Batman because his character is interesting. I would not be interested in a superhero comic that are just about the hero punching things, because if there's no meaning, no significance to any of it, it just bores me in the end.

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Old 06-12-2011, 11:52 PM   #11
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So...Godzilla, I think you are taking the term escapist or escapism a bit too personally. I understand what you are saying in that there is more depth to superheroes and comics. Its more than just the action, it poses deep philosophical questions about human nature and the nature of right and wrong. The themes in comics can spark the soul (if that exists), they can inspire one to be a better person.

However, I would argue that fantasy fiction such as Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter can do the exact same thing. At least, they have for me. They've had a deep and personal impact on me. They've made me question my beliefs about what it means to be human.



Escapism doesn't make you do that. Doesn't make you think on that deeper level. It just allows you to half pay attention, to shut part of your brain down and enjoy the ride.



Ok, I know that I walked the fence on both sides of the debate. So to sum up, I agree with Godzilla. Its not escapism, from my own personal perspective.

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Old 06-12-2011, 11:53 PM   #12
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when the hell did we start talking about Houdini??? that's escapism!

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Old 06-12-2011, 11:55 PM   #13
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when the hell did we start talking about Houdini??? that's escapism!
No, those are escapades.

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Old 06-12-2011, 11:59 PM   #14
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No, those are escapades.
no I'm pretty sure Houdini was an escape artist/magician...one of the best might I add. And all this fuss about movies being escapist or whatever...any movie is escapist. You go to a movie to escape from REAL LIFE. Now some movies are based on true life but unless it happened to you then you are going to escape from real life and to have a good time...

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:18 AM   #15
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Kal-el.9859, What is real life? If I were to spend time thinking about the issues that were covered in a movie (such as Inception and the nature of dreams), would that time be an extended aspect of the time I spent in the theatre escaping from my real life? What do we do on here. Is all this another form of escapism?

Sorry, I think about stuff like this too much...its my gift and my curse.

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:23 AM   #16
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Kal-el.9859, What is real life? If I were to spend time thinking about the issues that were covered in a movie (such as Inception and the nature of dreams), would that time be an extended aspect of the time I spent in the theatre escaping from my real life? What do we do on here. Is all this another form of escapism?

Sorry, I think about stuff like this too much...its my gift and my curse.
I guess some people need an escape from fantasy then?

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:42 AM   #17
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Sorry, was just thinking about this some more...I think the real truth behind this discussion is that everything we do and think about is ultimately a way to keep our minds off of our own death. We are constantly trying to not think about our own mortality. From that point of view, everything else is escapism from the real truth...from true reality.

So, in that sense what we do here is extremely important. We argue and discuss, postulate and nitpick, agree and disagree...because for some strange reason the stuff on here is important to us.

Maybe I'm only speaking for myself here...but on a deeper level I think I love superheroes so much because they remind me of gods...like the Roman and Greek gods only they actually have morals...I have a hard time believing in the God (or gods) of the major world religions, but I don't have a problem believing in Superman, or Batman, or the X-Men. They mean something more to me than just characters in a movie or comic book. To me, they represent the good that we are all capable of.

End of rant.


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Old 06-13-2011, 12:44 AM   #18
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So...Godzilla, I think you are taking the term escapist or escapism a bit too personally. I understand what you are saying in that there is more depth to superheroes and comics. Its more than just the action, it poses deep philosophical questions about human nature and the nature of right and wrong. The themes in comics can spark the soul (if that exists), they can inspire one to be a better person.

However, I would argue that fantasy fiction such as Lord of the Rings and Harry Potter can do the exact same thing. At least, they have for me. They've had a deep and personal impact on me. They've made me question my beliefs about what it means to be human.



Escapism doesn't make you do that. Doesn't make you think on that deeper level. It just allows you to half pay attention, to shut part of your brain down and enjoy the ride.



Ok, I know that I walked the fence on both sides of the debate. So to sum up, I agree with Godzilla. Its not escapism, from my own personal perspective.
You said it even better than I did.

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Kal-el.9859, What is real life? If I were to spend time thinking about the issues that were covered in a movie (such as Inception and the nature of dreams), would that time be an extended aspect of the time I spent in the theatre escaping from my real life? What do we do on here. Is all this another form of escapism?

Sorry, I think about stuff like this too much...its my gift and my curse.
Me, too. Furthermore, what about if a film influences the way you think about things in real life?

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:45 AM   #19
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I'm not worried about death...

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:47 AM   #20
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I'm not worried about death...
Neither am I.

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Old 06-13-2011, 12:51 AM   #21
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Neither am I.
glad to hear it

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Old 06-13-2011, 01:04 AM   #22
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Me, too. Furthermore, what about if a film influences the way you think about things in real life?
Isn't that the point of good film? To make you look at things from a new perspective, to get inside that characters head for 2 hours or so. Sometimes this happens on a subconcious level. Sometimes conciously.

For example, just watched Memento again the other day (got Nolan on the brain).

Natalie: But even if you get revenge you're not gonna remember it. You're not even going to know that it happened.
Leonard Shelby: My wife deserves vengance. Doesn't make a difference whether I know about it. Just becuase there are things I don't remember doesn't make my actions meaningless. The world doesn't just disappear when you close your eyes, does it? Anyway, maybe I'll take a photograph to remind myself, get another freaky tattoo.


And...

Leonard Shelby: I have to believe in a world outside my own mind. I have to believe that my actions still have meaning, even if I can't remember them. I have to believe that when my eyes are closed, the world's still there. Do I believe the world's still there? Is it still out there?... Yeah. We all need mirrors to remind ourselves who we are. I'm no different.


I love the themes of memory. Do actions having or not having meaning depending on one's memory of them? Did something happen if you don't remember it? And just the fragile nature of our own memories. Why we block out certain events in our past, and how they still affect us to this day even though we may not realize it.

Anyway...Good films should make you question the nature of your own reality and your philosophy...in my opinion.

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Old 06-13-2011, 01:08 AM   #23
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Isn't that the point of good film? To make you look at things from a new perspective, to get inside that characters head for 2 hours or so. Sometimes this happens on a subconcious level. Sometimes conciously.

For example, just watched Memento again the other day (got Nolan on the brain).

Natalie: But even if you get revenge you're not gonna remember it. You're not even going to know that it happened.
Leonard Shelby: My wife deserves vengance. Doesn't make a difference whether I know about it. Just becuase there are things I don't remember doesn't make my actions meaningless. The world doesn't just disappear when you close your eyes, does it? Anyway, maybe I'll take a photograph to remind myself, get another freaky tattoo.


And...

Leonard Shelby: I have to believe in a world outside my own mind. I have to believe that my actions still have meaning, even if I can't remember them. I have to believe that when my eyes are closed, the world's still there. Do I believe the world's still there? Is it still out there?... Yeah. We all need mirrors to remind ourselves who we are. I'm no different.


I love the themes of memory. Do actions having or not having meaning depending on one's memory of them? Did something happen if you don't remember it? And just the fragile nature of our own memories. Why we block out certain events in our past, and how they still affect us to this day even though we may not realize it.

Anyway...Good films should make you question the nature of your own reality and your philosophy...in my opinion.
when I watch The Hangover or Dude, Where's My Car? I don't question my own reality or philosophy....I just laugh my ass off

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Old 06-13-2011, 01:30 AM   #24
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Those weren't the kind of...oh well. I like a good brainless comedy now and again just like the next guy. To each his own Kal-el, to each his own.

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Old 06-13-2011, 01:32 AM   #25
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Those weren't the kind of...oh well. I like a good brainless comedy now and again just like the next guy. To each his own Kal-el, to each his own.
Bravo

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