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Old 07-09-2011, 10:53 PM   #26
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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You still didn't adress what a said Kuro. Clark is still going to have private moments. He's not going to be the superhero all the time, so it has nothing to do with his parents being dead.
He did answer you. Superman still has his "private moments," which I take to mean "human moments." And indeed, Superman's thought processes are familiar with humanity, since he lived as a human and as the adopted son of humans.

I think The Batman's delineation speaks to what you're getting at; The Batman is saying that Kal-El is the synthesis of the human and Kryptonian aspects of Superman. This makes more sense than saying "Clark."

It's not that Kal-El has forgotten or discarded Clark, it's that because Kal-El is now Superman (i.e., the fully-realized being with "powers far beyond those of mortal men") he can no longer simply be Clark. That stage of development is now over. He's no longer "just Clark" because his awareness has finally caught up with his abilities and Kryptonian nature. He now realizes he was never really "just Clark."

Like Kurosawa said, Byrne's take was essentially a stronger Spider-Man. That's not who the character was for decades, and that's not what I want to read about. Byrne's Clark basically developed powers, used them for personal gain, then decided to use them to help others. Same basic premise as Spider-Man's origin story. It works for Spider-Man (I guess, but I've long since outgrown that character) who is a fairly limited character with no real mythological underpinnings. But Superman, out of all super-heroes, is the most mythological and iconic. Thus, stripping him of these qualities reduces him to a "poor man's" comic book character, if you'll pardon the expression.

The other way I look at it is that comic book stories should fully exploit the medium. There is no other medium like that of the comic book; there are no constraints or limits save the imagination of the creators. So why take the first super-hero, the greatest super-hero, and the super-hero with the richest mythology, and then do it "low-budget?" Why not embrace the wonderful "super" nature of the character and his world?

That's what's been missing since COIE, and I believe that's why we're where we are now. Hopefully, things will change for the better, but I'm not convinced yet.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:11 PM   #27
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

I think Byrne's take was good. Its just needs to expanded upon and updated. I also feel you could do those superman stories where he's not beating up bad guys and it's just exploring his mind and how he views things where Clark is the real person.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:12 PM   #28
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Ah I get it now. Using Kal EL as the name for that side makes since when you put it that way Red Hood.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:20 PM   #29
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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You still didn't adress what I said Kuro. Clark is still going to have private moments. He's not going to be the superhero all the time, so it has nothing to do with his parents being dead.
Even when he has his private moments, with the Kents gone and with the "Smallville Clark" or the real Clark dead and gone, Superman is still himself.

In Maggin's second novel, Superman's secret identity is exposed for a while, and this exchange about it happened:

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Originally Posted by Excerpt from Elliot S! Maggin's Miracle Monday
"No, I was just—" Jimmy hesitated but saw it was not going to work. "Well, maybe I'm wrong, but she hasn't done anything but try to get Superman's goat, as you said. She's just more unfriendly about it. She hasn't killed anyone, right?"

"Except Clark." It was the first thing Lois had said since she said hello to Reed at the show's opening.

"Clark. Well, yeah, but there wasn't an actual murder involved. Hey, what's with everyone feeling like somebody really died? I mean, Clark was one of my best friends—maybe my best friend—and I'm kind of really happy for him that he turned out to be Superman. It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. I mean, that's confusing, I guess, but I'd really like it if he'd come by sometime for lunch or coffee the way he used to. I don't know why he doesn't."

"What would you call him?" Reed asked.

"Call him?"

"What would you call Clark Kent if he came by for a cup of coffee with you?"

"Oh, I get you, I'd say, 'Hi, Superman.'"

"That's part of the point I was making," Perry White said, picking it up again. "If Superman masquerades as Clark secretly, he's living among us as a natural Earthman. If, on the other hand, he puts on those glasses and we all know it's really Superman, he becomes grotesque, a dangerously schizoid personality. Maybe one of the purposes of this Kristin Wells is to discredit Superman, to drive him past the brink of sanity. Who's to say?"
After the Kents die, the only Clark Kent that was ever real-they boy they raised and guided with uncanny kindness and decency into being a superman-dies as well, leaving only the creation of Superman that carries their name in loving tribute.

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He did answer you. Superman still has his "private moments," which I take to mean "human moments." And indeed, Superman's thought processes are familiar with humanity, since he lived as a human and as the adopted son of humans.

I think The Batman's delineation speaks to what you're getting at; The Batman is saying that Kal-El is the synthesis of the human and Kryptonian aspects of Superman. This makes more sense than saying "Clark."

It's not that Kal-El has forgotten or discarded Clark, it's that because Kal-El is now Superman (i.e., the fully-realized being with "powers far beyond those of mortal men") he can no longer simply be Clark. That stage of development is now over. He's no longer "just Clark" because his awareness has finally caught up with his abilities and Kryptonian nature. He now realizes he was never really "just Clark."

Like Kurosawa said, Byrne's take was essentially a stronger Spider-Man. That's not who the character was for decades, and that's not what I want to read about. Byrne's Clark basically developed powers, used them for personal gain, then decided to use them to help others. Same basic premise as Spider-Man's origin story. It works for Spider-Man (I guess, but I've long since outgrown that character) who is a fairly limited character with no real mythological underpinnings. But Superman, out of all super-heroes, is the most mythological and iconic. Thus, stripping him of these qualities reduces him to a "poor man's" comic book character, if you'll pardon the expression.

The other way I look at it is that comic book stories should fully exploit the medium. There is no other medium like that of the comic book; there are no constraints or limits save the imagination of the creators. So why take the first super-hero, the greatest super-hero, and the super-hero with the richest mythology, and then do it "low-budget?" Why not embrace the wonderful "super" nature of the character and his world?

That's what's been missing since COIE, and I believe that's why we're where we are now. Hopefully, things will change for the better, but I'm not convinced yet.
What makes Marvel and DC characters so interesting is that Marvel's characters are often more personal in nature. True, there are so big issues, like "With Great Power comes Great Responsibility" and the MLK/Malcom X allegory of the X-Men, but for the most part, Marvel characters are insular, relatable characters. DC's heroes are more iconic and larger than life. And it's been since DC has went away from this that Superman in particular and their characters in general have failed to connect like they once did. Only Batman made that transition successfully because his story and his world was more personal anyway.


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Old 07-09-2011, 11:20 PM   #30
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

I think the three sides would work for comics but I'd like for the movie to simplfy this and just do one is the disguise and one is the true side. I don't want his personality to take up the whole movie.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:24 PM   #31
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

I think over time all superhero's have to become Marvelize a little and give inner problems. It's just doesn't work when their all perfect. And that is what SuperGod is. He's a boring character. My Uncle who's been reading comics a whole lot longer than me, said he found Superman a boring character before Byre and I concur.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:27 PM   #32
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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I think over time all superhero's have to become Marvelize a little and give inner problems. It's just doesn't work when their all perfect. And that is what SuperGod is. He's a boring character. My Uncle who's been reading comics a whole lot longer than me, said he found Superman a boring character before Byre and I concur.
Superman was a big success for almost 50 years with his original characterization and a failure for 25 years with the Byrne characterization. It's a proven failure.

And DC has tried to Marvelize their characters since the early 70's...and its never gotten over. Why read a fake Marvel when you can read the real thing?

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:36 PM   #33
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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I think the three sides would work for comics but I'd like for the movie to simplfy this and just do one is the disguise and one is the true side. I don't want his personality to take up the whole movie.
It wouldn't really take up that much time. Show Kal in the Smallville scenes, then establish Superman as a larger than life extension of Kal, then we have the reporter disguise that we see at his job.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:45 PM   #34
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Do you truly think in today's world The silver age character would work? Seriously? Is that whole he worked for 50 years argument all you got? Cause it holds no ground when take in consideration that this wait for it...2011 and not the 60's. Those perfect characters WONT work. Supergod coming back for good isn't gonna solve his issue and you and I both know that. People think of Superman as lame because of the silver age. Theirs no ****ing need for that to be in comics or in this movie. Yeah it might have worked for 50 years but it won't work now. Wonder Woman was more popular in the 40'a than she is now but should she go back to getting tied up in kinky ways in every comic. Hell NO. Batman was popular in the 60's should he go back being the Adam West Batman? HELL NO. Should Superman go back to being his silly and campy self? HELL NAW. If Batman can evolve into a better character why can't Superman? I understand if you don't like post crisis Superman but him going back to his silver age roots isn't gonna work for this movie.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:51 PM   #35
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Why Clark call himself Kal-EL when he's not Superman. I prefer Kal-EL=Superman. Smallville is the real dude and Metropolis Clark is Smallville Clark toned down a good notch and some clumsiness and mild reservedness added in to make him seem less like Superman.

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Old 07-09-2011, 11:54 PM   #36
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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Do you truly think in today's world The silver age character would work? Seriously? Is that whole he worked for 50 years argument all you got? Cause it holds no ground when take in consideration that this wait for it...2011 and not the 60's. Those perfect characters WONT work. Supergod coming back for good isn't gonna solve his issue and you and I both know that. People think of Superman as lame because of the silver age. Theirs no ****ing need for that to be in comics or in this movie. Yeah it might have worked for 50 years but it won't work now. Wonder Woman was more popular in the 40'a than she is now but should she go back to getting tied up in kinky ways in every comic. Hell NO. Batman was popular in the 60's should he go back being the Adam West Batman? HELL NO. Should Superman go back to being his silly and campy self? HELL NAW. If Batman can evolve into a better character why can't Superman? I understand if you don't like post crisis Superman but him going back to his silver age roots isn't gonna work for this movie.
Superman wasn't silly and campy in the Silver Age. There were SOME silly stories but there were also some very serious and tragic stories as well. You don't know what you're talking about and at this stage you are unwilling to educate yourself or be educated about Superman and his history. You've bought into the lie that all Pre-Crisis stories were Jimmy Olsen Turtle Boy and Lois snooping to prove Clark was really Superman. And do I have to mention stupid Byrne stories like Superman and Clark as twin brothers, the Big Barda porno story, Superman killing the PZ villains, etc?

And Batman became a better character because he went BACK to his roots. The early Batman was a grim, hardass detective and the modern Batman is an update of that. The best Superman story of the last 25 years-All Star Superman-shows that your claims are completely wrong. That character is essentially the Silver Age Superman. Also, the new Superman in Action Comics looks to be based on the Golden Age Superman.

People think of Superman as lame because of Post-Crisis because DC pounded it into their heads for years that he was an ignorant, naive boy scout and Batman's personal whipping boy, They have chumped him off for 25 years now and that's why people have decided that he's a loser. Never forget: Byrne's Superman and Frank Miller's DKR Superman are supposed to be the same character. And we saw how Batman handed "Clark" his ass in that story.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:04 AM   #37
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

My only problem with post criss Superman is that Superman and reporter Clark are to similar. Why is it so hard for his friends to figure out who he is? At least when Clark is more of a disguise it makes a little more sense.

However, I enjoy both pre crisis and post criss Superman comics for different reasons.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:09 AM   #38
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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Why Clark call himself Kal-EL when he's not Superman. I prefer Kal-EL=Superman. Smallville is the real dude and Metropolis Clark is Smallville Clark toned down a good notch and some clumsiness and mild reservedness added in to make him seem less like Superman.
I'm just rolling with the Kal thing. I pretty much see Kal and Smallville Clark as the same dude. lol

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:13 AM   #39
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

I'll be honest to you. I haven't read every Silver Age Superman stories. But my uncle has and is a walking encyclopedia for comics since he's been readings since the early 60's. Im not gonna lie and act like I know it all. But I do know this I was raised on post crisis Superman and I like it much more than SuperGod. Also, yes their were stupid post crisis stories, but I bet my ass off They've probably been about quaddruaple stupid Superman stories in the silver age. I don't think ALL-Star Superman is the best. I greatly prefer Superman:Birthright. And yes I know it had some Silver Age elements return but it wasn't heavy. I like Golden Age Superman. I love the old cartoons. I like the fact that in the Golden Age he was more aggressive and less of a boy scout. I'd love that Superman to return but updated. You ask any non comic book fan why they dislike Superman and they'll usually say...HE'S TO POWERFUL. Guess where that started?

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:18 AM   #40
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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I'll be honest to you. I haven't read every Silver Age Superman stories. But my uncle has and is a walking encyclopedia for comics since he's been readings since the early 60's. Im not gonna lie and act like I know it all. But I do know this I was raised on post crisis Superman and I like it much more than SuperGod. Also, yes their were stupid post crisis stories, but I bet my ass off They've probably been about quaddruaple stupid Superman stories in the silver age. I don't think ALL-Star Superman is the best. I greatly prefer Superman:Birthright. And yes I know it had some Silver Age elements return but it wasn't heavy. I like Golden Age Superman. I love the old cartoons. I like the fact that in the Golden Age he was more aggressive and less of a boy scout. I'd love that Superman to return but updated. You ask any non comic book fan why they dislike Superman and they'll usually say...HE'S TO POWERFUL. Guess where that started?
The first person that actually started pushing the idea that Superman was too powerful was Stan Lee..and guess why he did that? Because DC was the competition, that's why.

By the way, no 60's Marvel title outsold Superman.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:23 AM   #41
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

TheIncredibleSK,

I think you're missing the fact that Kal-El, despite your label of "Supergod," still had weaknesses. He knew his limits. He struggled with feelings of alienation and the realization that he was different and would always be so. He knew that no matter what he did, people would still suffer and die. He also struggled with the realization that by helping so much, he might actually be hurting human ingenuity and self-reliance.

Read this very brief story, "Must There Be A Superman?," and you'll understand one of the greatest struggles of Superman: is he doing more harm than good by helping? Does being a "Big Brother" to humanity diminish what it is capable of accomplishing on its own?

One of the other things you're overlooking (or perhaps are unaware of) is that Byrne/DC went out of their way to make Krypton a place that was cold, alien, and ultimately inhuman. The goal was to free Superman from the longing he had for the life he missed.

In the Silver Age, Kal-El knew a great deal about his heritage, he visited Krypton's past, he knew about its customs and traditions, and he had relatives in the form of Kara and Krypto. He also had the inhabitants of the Bottle City of Kandor. All of this created a mourning within Kal-El for the loss of the world he truly belonged to.

I don't know how much more identifiable that can be. How human is it to long for the past, to wonder what might have been or to dream of what can never be? This was all taken away by the Byrne reboot.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:26 AM   #42
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

While you're there, SK, check out some of the other Silver and Bronze Age comics available. You'll find that your misconceptions about Superman's characterization are just that. Perhaps you'd benefit more from making your own judgments based on the material instead of "inheriting" your uncle's take? And it seems that he's more of a Marvel fan from what you say. This would explain why the Byrne era Superman would be so appealing to him.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:29 AM   #43
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

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Superman was a big success for almost 50 years with his original characterization and a failure for 25 years with the Byrne characterization. It's a proven failure.

And DC has tried to Marvelize their characters since the early 70's...and its never gotten over. Why read a fake Marvel when you can read the real thing?
That's another one of your opinions purposely worded to fool people into thinking they are reading facts, like pretty much everything else you write.

As a consistent reader of Superman comics since 1978, I can tell you frankly that prior to the Byrne revamp, the stories were mostly garbage.
Name five good non-imaginary stories from the pre-Byrne Superman era, besides the Superman Sandman saga (Denny O'Neil's failed reboot of the character).

Other than the rare issue here and there, most of the stories sucked.

Superman's sales were in the toilet for many years and Byrne came and gave the Man of Steel a new lease on life.

The only "proven failure" is your attempt to fool readers into believing that the pre-Byrne comics were spectacular.

FYI the reason Superman comic sales (and DC comic characters in general) declined in the seventies was due to the growing awareness and appeal of the superior art and writing found in Marvel Comics.
Marvel Comics raised the bar.
It's that simple.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:33 AM   #44
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

On the first page I already said that he should feel different but even then theirs no reason for him to give up his human side. I also knew that made Krypton a cold and inhuman place something they took from the Donner films. While I feel any person would want to know where they come from, I do feel that Clark should be torn over his human and alien sides but I still don't see a true for giving up his human side as Clark since he raised as Clark not as Superman. Why would any person give up who they are to become something their not. Thats the problem I see with Superman being the real person. Any of things you said you can do as Clark being the real person. I feel as if Clark and Superman just need to be written better not truly changed.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:40 AM   #45
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

I just don't see the point of Superman being the real person when theirs truly no story that can't be told where Clark is the real person. Tell me one story where he can't be the real person. Any story where Superman is the real person can be told where Clark is the real person. Clark being the real person is more relatable than than somebody trying to relate to guy who's human side is just a act and his powers are god like. Its that simple to me.

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Old 07-10-2011, 12:40 AM   #46
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Yeah, I agree that it doesn't make sense to give up his human side.

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Old 07-10-2011, 01:16 AM   #47
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Clark Kent is more than just a façade; but Superman is also more than just a suit and an obligation. When he is in Superman mode, there is no acting going on. He really is like that, he really worries about everybody, his vocation actually does lie in helping others. That's also the case when he's in Clark mode. Superman the hero never ceases to exist, whatever the wardrobe.

Then again, Clark is how he sees himself. His identity - his sense of self - goes back not to when he first wore the suit and saved someone, but to the farm, with his parents, with Lana and Pete, doing chores. That's what's so great about him. From the second he donned the cape and became a hero, there was no way back; he was now Superman. Superman 24/7, no matter what he's wearing. But for Superman to exist, a foundation is needed, and that foundation... is Clark Kent. None can exist without the other.

The Clark of the farm will always exist, it will always be the dominant force in his personality. That's what he owes himself. But his powers, his principles, his sense of duty compells him to be more than that. To be Superman. That's what he owes the world.


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Old 07-10-2011, 01:26 AM   #48
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Given how we've seen Nolan/Goyer handle Bruce Wayne's character within the last two films, I think we'll be getting Clark in the form of:

1. Clark Kent-The Real Man

2. Clark Kent- The Mild Mannered Reporter that most people see in Metropolis

3. Superman/Kal-el: The last son of Krypton and Earth's greatest hero

If anything, I would assume that the persona of Superman itself is created by Clark to represent more of an idea to humanity, than just a heroic persona. To represent the best of us, the things that we can accomplish if we conquer our own insecurities in order to help others, etc.

That's why imho, Superman is best remembered in the future of his universe, and why I believe his character has endured for as long as he has in the real world.

In any case, I personally prefer Clark being the real man, especially since for the LAST 5 FREAKING FILMS, we've HAD Superman being the real persona, and that was one of the MAIN issues that A LOT of people had with the film.

I've read enough to know that a good amount of people want to MOVE on from those days, and have a modern day interpretations of Clark (like he's been written in the comics for the 90's and from 2000-2011)

You don't have to angst him up like characters such as Spiderman or Batman, but in the same time, I honestly don't think they should place so many standards for how Superman should (the perfect person), or the god/Christ like figure as well.

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Old 07-10-2011, 01:36 AM   #49
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Exacty herolee. Superman is a symbol and reporter Clark is a disguise.

Smallville Clark is the true person.

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Old 07-10-2011, 04:23 AM   #50
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Default Re: Superman/Clark Kent/Kal-El Characterization

Yep, especially considering Goyer's forewords to Secret Origin where he comments on how much he likes this particular origin:

“There is a heart breaking moment halfway through the first chapter in which young Clark is told the truth about his heritage. He races out into the night, sobbing, stumbling through the cornfields. Eventually, his foster father, Jonathan, finds him.

‘I don’t want to be someone else,’ says Clark. ‘I don’t want to be different. I want to be Clark Kent.’

‘I want to be your son".



Definitely sounds like Smallville-Clark Kent will be the real Kal-El. That might also make for the bigger drama onscreen at least.

Then of course later on Smallville-Clark and Superman will probably merge into the same person more or less.

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