Henry Cavill as Superman in “Man of Steel.” Image via filmofilia.com
It’s not that surprising that the latest Superman movie, Man of Steel, had a, well, super opening weekend. With the hopes of fans of not just this franchise but an eventual Justice League movie for DC Entertainment to assemble, the collaboration between Batman producer Christopher Nolan, writer David Goyer and director Zack Snyder had to deliver, and well.
And it did, financially. Critically? That’s another matter entirely. When outlets like Newsarama, which are usually DC-friendly, give the film a 3 out of 10, that points to how split the opinions have been on this movie.
Racialicious is no different, as our panelists came out of their respective screenings feeling differently about it. Heavy spoilers under the cut.
Since the release of the new trailer for Man Of Steel, there’s been increased hope among many Superman fans that the Christopher Nolan/Zack Snyder collaboration will bring luster back to the character’s cinematic incarnation.
But some fans’ idea of how they want the character’s bicultural nature to play out paints yet another disconcerting picture of geekdom’s self-styled “colorblindness.”
Longtime readers will remember the infamous Twitter discussion between Son of Baldwin and Marvel Comics editor Tom Breevort, where Breevort proceeded to demonstrate how limited the comics industry’s thinking can be when it comes to race.
Not that things have gotten markedly better all of a sudden, but it was pleasant to have a good conversation on the subject vis-a-vis DC Comics’ Superman last night with one of the more notable writers in the industry, Mark Waid, who tackled the character in the Superman: Birthright miniseries, and more recently has earned praise for his work on titles like Irredeemable,Insufferable and Marvel’s Daredevil.
I put together a Storify for the chat, which can be seen under the cut. One note, however: the discussion centers around the representations of the character prior to DC’s reboot last year. So, no short cape and jeans talk here. Continue reading →
Reached for comment, a spokesperson for DC Comics gave the official reason for the switch as follows:
“This fill in issue contains a lost classic, Lost Boy: A Tale of Krypto the Superdog, set shortly after Superboy died in Infinite Crisis and Superman went missing.
DC Comics determined that the previously solicited story did not work within the ‘Grounded’ storyline. However, Chris Roberson, will be back for the final two issues of Superman’s year long walk across America. As we near the conclusion, catch up with Superman next month as he makes stops in Portland and Newberg, OR.”
The statement that it “doesn’t work within ‘Grounded’” is vague enough to raise questions all by itself, because — fittingly enough for a series about Superman walking across America — that story has been all over the map in terms of tone. That’s to be expected with a story that has two writers as different as J. Michael Straczynski and Chris Roberson (and a third if you count the fill-ins G. Willow Wilson did before Straczynski’s official departure), but there’s no getting around it. In the past year’s worth of Superman comics, we’ve seen stories about Superman smugly lecturing passers-by about Thoreau, burning down drug dealers’ houses with his heat vision, helping space aliens build a factory to revitalize the economy, visiting the extradimensional headquarters of a team of Superman-inspired heroes from the future and fighting an army in Tibet with Batman.