Sunday, 12 May 2013

Why I finally 'get' Superman

Image credit: DC Comics
 If you'd asked me two weeks ago what I thought of Superman I'd have made a sound like 'pffft' and a series of sounds that resemble 'he's a bit boring, isn't he?" Past me is a moron. I've had a change of heart in the last week and I'll tell you for why.

 It's actually pretty simple - I read a Superman book. Several actually, and I watched some films. I'd read one or two issues before- hell, I used to watch Lois and Clark religiously when it was on back in the hazy 90s, but for some reason as I got older I didn't really think much of Supes. After all, he's overpowered right? Also, his weakness is a bit of rare rock that seems to crop up everywhere - that's a bit lame.

I check out the internet and I see these arguments all over, which reinforced my opinion that the Big Blue was just really lame. Batman's cooler, right? He growls and shit.

Then I watched a video by internet videogame critic Angry Joe, who launched into an argument about how Superman would win in a fight between Batman. I didn't really care about the argument (although, he's probably right), but he did tell me some really cool things that I didn't really consider about Superman. So I thought 'what that hell' and watched All-Star Superman. Holy crap was that a big ball of insane awesome. After that I went on to read the first volume of Grant Morrison's run on Action Comics (another slice of the awesome pie) and watch Superman vs The Elite, which was fantastic.

I was realising that I was completely wrong about Superman. He's so much more than just an overpowered muscle-dude. His need to help anyone, no matter who they are, is admirable. Even though he is the post powerful being on the planet he never contemplates taking over the world, yet he could so easily do it. He's the guy that you want to be - not who you are now, which speaks to me and is the same reason I love Captain America. He's an ideal, and he's completely positive. While Batman protects the people of Gotham through fear, Superman does it through hope and teaching people to be better humans. He sees the potential in people to strive to be better and sets a great example for the world.

Even down to a purely superheroics level, Superman is just plain badass. In All-Star Superman he literally bashes out suns on an anvil to feed to his hungry star-eating alien. His fights are insane and remind me of the bits of Dragonball Z that I enjoyed (namely the parts where they aren't charging their attack for several weeks). Yet, after all that, he goes off to be a reporter and an all-round nice guy.

So, I think Superman is awesome. Some of his stories are cerebral and I love that - it wasn't something I was expecting. Now I'm totally pumped for Man of Steel.

What do you think about Superman? Lame or awesome? Let me know in the comments.