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Old 03-05-2021, 07:00 PM   #181
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Originally Posted by oldmanwinters View Post
Remember, no matter how hard one tries to appease the new cultural orthodoxy, it's never enough:

https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/havi...213818896.html

Gross.

For better or worse, we live in a world where when it comes to recent Superman films, material that's presented and meant to be taken as "poignant, thoughtful and introspective" is erroneously seen as "mopey, angsty, and Emo" by people who will only accept Superman so long as he never expresses any human emotions aside from an abundance of joy. He's either constantly smiling and making bold dramatic speeches, or people don't wanna see it. That's the most vocal opinion, even if it isn't the majority opinion.

And so of COURSE the natural thing to do is to present Superman as an "angry black man" wrestling with what it means to be the most powerful man in the world when that world is "full of inherent systemic racism." THAT is the "hopeful, joyous, optimistic" counterpoint to the "still trying to figure things out" portrayal of the recent movies. Sure.

Snyder's films have already dealt with those themes about feelings of alienation, and people generally hating or fearing those who are "different" just because they are in fact different, in a very real and satisfying way. He doesn't need to be a black guy, with the point being made with the subtlety of a brick to the head, for those themes to be explored. Many people have made the case that "those aren't themes that need to be explored in a Superman movie; we don't want to see a world that fears him or him wrestling with his role and what he represents, or any of that stuff," but the fact is that for those who like Snyder's films, it's their exploration of that very material that gives them so much of their weight. We the audience know that he's the story's hero, because we see him strive to be that; to the world at large, he's just dangerous, an unpredictable loose cannon they can't fully trust or put faith in because he's just so "different" from them - until he gives his life to save the world that had feared and scorned him. He never gave up on the people he was pledged to save, even when they wouldn't accept him. That's the drama. That's the heroism. That's the "hope".

BUT. Some people will still swear that such weighty themes are just "too heavy" or "too dark" for a mainstream Superman movie. I disagree with that sentiment, as do many others, but it helps to explain why the reaction to that presentation of Superman is so divisive, with those who love it REALLY loving it and those who feel it was "wrong" not allowing for any argument to the contrary.

So it completely f*cking baffles me why WB would make this particular choice, when the most overwhelming criticism of their most recent Superman movies has been "Not happy enough." When one of the few things people liked about the theatrical cut of Justice League was "Look how smiley-happy Superman is all of a sudden!" People who leaned away from Snyder's take have been saying since "Man of Steel" that what they want is something lighter and more upbeat, and even people who love Snyder's presentation generally acknowledge that it's about time that Superman take a step away from being "thoughtful and introspective" and more towards the more lighthearted and well-adjusted character he's generally presented as. It was a journey of self-discovery, and I'd forever argue that it was done well, but it would be acceptable now to lean into a more upbeat direction, sure.

But with this... if anything, it promises to be MORE "bleak and dour" than anything Snyder was ever accused of. Some people who hate Snyder's style have said that his exploration of themes is as subtle as a sledgehammer; Superman as an "oppressed, angry black man" fighting to save the world while overcoming "systemic racism", with all the dramatic irony being "But the world will always hate him and never accept him, NOT because he's an alien... but because he's black!" will be about as subtle as an 18-wheeler full of sledgehammers and pianos ramming into a brick wall at full speed.

This whole thing is stupid. The one saving grace, is that the most recent thing I've read was that it's going to be an "Elseworlds" movie with a different character entirely, so it's not like they'll be ruining Clark Kent for this nonsense. But at the same time, it's baffling and infuriating that the next motion picture presentation of Superman, the one that's going to define the character for the next decade in the eyes of mainstream audiences, isn't even going to be the real Superman in any form or fashion whatsoever. That's lunacy.

Typical WB. "We don't know how to market our products, except by the whims of Millennial Twitter. Those are the only people we listen to."

Garbage. This promises to be nothing but garbage. And in the unlikely event it actually turns out to be successful... well, it will just hammer home the point that for all their bluster people just plain don't like or understand the Superman character, if they'd reject Snyder's take but embrace something like this instead.
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Old 03-05-2021, 08:04 PM   #182
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Originally Posted by oldmanwinters View Post
Remember, no matter how hard one tries to appease the new cultural orthodoxy, it's never enough:

https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/havi...213818896.html
This **** was written by retard who most likely never ever read a good Superman story in his life.

Even though I am not big fan of Sups, his overall motivation has nothing to do with serving a country. His conflict is whether or not he should serve humanity as a whole, as imperfect as it is, while he, himself, being almost a perfection himself.

The rest about "systemic racism" and **** is not even worse mentioning. Author lives in his own reality and I don't see much of a purpose to comment on delusions.
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Old 03-06-2021, 02:57 PM   #183
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People who watch movies like to see their characters go on a journey of some form. Who they are when they start the movie is different to who they when they end it. They change and the characters around them change too.

We've talked before about how Man of Steel is basically Objectivist story. Snyder gets Superman enough that he is too earnest and selfless to be an objectivist so the natural journey he goes in proving everyone including Ma and Pa Kent that tells him he must only think of himself his views are right. The movie contrives a scenario that forced the character to choose to murder Zod or have everyone else die, something which if it happened in any other version of this property he'd find another way but here he folds and kills him.

So maybe the journey that Clark/Superman has been on this entire time was the opposite and our protagonist was wrong and everyone else was right. Maybe some evil should be shown no mercy and should be snuffed out on the spot. That's certainly not what I would want for Superman but I'd grudgingly respect the guts of going in that direction...but it doesn't do that either.

Despite being forced to something which goes against his own moral code he does his embarassing scream and just feels bad about it. It doesn't change him or any of the world around him in any meaningful way. The movie poses some pretty important questions it just doesn't answer them. Not because they were saving it for other movies in that same continuity (because they didn't explore this further) or because Snyder wanted the audience to come up with their own conclusions but there isn't really a satisfying answer.

People were iffy on Man of Steel not because it was dark and serious and they are just brainless idiots who wanted the Donner movie version or because it tried explore 'serious' themes (most of which were covered by other hit comic book movies) but because it just wasn't good. An interesting movie for sure but not actually good. To be honest I came away from MOS thinking the movie was made a man who likes Superman's idealism but staunchly doesn't agree with it and wanted to prove the character wrong but if the recent reports on were he would have taken the DCEU if allowed I'm convinced he actually dislikes the character.

As for a black Superman I feel everyone overreacting as frankly it's very unlikely to happen but if it does...

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It is also worthy to note that representation and social commentary aren't the only areas of exploration afforded to a Black Superman, as all aspects of Black culture could and should be utilized to produce a full-bodied character not limited to trite tropes. How do his notions of serving Earth change when raised as a Black man in a systemically racist country? Does he see vigilantes as a welcome alternative to perpetual over-policing, or does he forsake his community to become a hero for every man (aka white men)? These are the questions a non-marginalized hero could never explore onscreen, and should be the driving force of Superman's internal narrative, not overdone stereotypes. (The only trope I will tolerate is a short scene where Superman jokes that he can mask his identity with a simple pair of glasses because all Black people look the same, followed by a wink from a random Daily Planet security guard in on the joke.)

The premise of a Black Superman fighting a canon villain to save society without mention of his thoughts on whether this society is worth saving would fail on all fronts of the story. If DC wants a simple story, stick with a simple character: a white man who has no reservations about serving his country, because when he really thinks about it, the country has always done the same for him.
I have zero problem with this. After all if you're going to make Superman an African American it only makes sense that the movie explores the most likely life he would have led and how differently it would shape him. If you're looking for a Superman movie to explore serious themes you got one right there.
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Old 03-06-2021, 03:41 PM   #184
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Old 03-06-2021, 04:24 PM   #185
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Boy, that's just one big giant bad take, right there. But whatever. "Opinions".

- I think if a person wants to sound like they're making an intelligent point they could start by finding out the difference between "murder" and "manslaughter", just for one thing. Seriously, these things matter a whole bunch, and whenever I hear anyone (and there are a lot of them) bang on about "HE MURDERED ZOD!", I have to just sigh and accept that the person speaking is an ignorant person trying to sound smart, and I confess I mostly just dismiss the rest of their point because if they can't even get THAT right... well....

Despite the fact that we generally agree on nothing, I'd like to think that you're better than the usual nitwits who try and belabor the point about how awful and terrible and whatever that scene was supposed to be. So if you're going to try and make that point, I implore you to at least use the right words in doing so.

- But yeah, as is usually the case I strongly disagree with just about everything you said. Most definitely that "MoS wasn't a good movie". That's just complete nonsense. Maybe it wasn't what you wanted, but to say it's not a good movie goes beyond "opinion" into something else entirely. It's only a "bad movie" to people who think they know the Superman character a lot better than they actually do. Evidence to this stands by the fact that most people who never saw/never cared about the Reeve movies, and/or only saw the character for the first time in MoS, generally say that it is indeed a very good movie. The only "criticism" it gets is from people who swear it somehow mishandled the character, based on their own preconceived notions and biases, and those people are quite simply incorrect. They can have their opinion, their opinion is still not accurate and based on inherent biases. People who HAVE no such biases all generally like the film. There are countless people who openly state that that movie is what made them care about Superman to begin with. I don't think a "bad movie" has such power, quite frankly.

- And yes, most people who hated it ARE just Donner/Reeve acolytes, if you actually pay any attention to the Superman fanbase and the things they actually say. They hold up that movie as if it were The Last Word (rather than the first) on the character, and any interpretation that veers away from it is "wrong". That's not me saying that, that's Those People saying that. And it is a very asinine opinion to have, but it doesn't stop those people from saying it, over and over and over again.

- The one thing you got right was that MoS was a rather overtly Objectivist take on the material... but that's because ALL super-hero stories are inherently Objectivist. They ALL rely on the notion that there are "special people" who exist to show the "normals" how to better behave, and that the world only functions properly when you unshackle these "Special People" and let them do their thing, not try and handcuff them and force them to conform to the standards of the common rabble. Yes, we do see a lot of that in Snyder's movies, but that's a feature, not a bug. Snyder simply understands that ALL super-heroes are inherently Objectivist and isn't shy about shining a light on it. Case in point, "The Battle of Smallville" where at every turn, the Army's interference only makes the situation worse whereas Superman more or less has things under control against Faora and Nam-Ek until he has to keep stopping to clean up whatever mess the soldiers are making. Like sure, they were only doing their job, but the scene also sends the message of "Boy, maybe things would be alright if people just got out of Superman's way and let him Be Superman" (which is also the entire point of BvS, as well, only illustrated to much larger degree).

The entire concept of super-heroes is Objectivist. They are the "special ones" who get to operate outside the laws of society because we the audience know and understand that they're stronger, faster, smarter, and more noble than we are. What keeps them (and Superman specifically) heroic, however, is their humility, the fact that THEY don't see themselves as inherently all that much better than anyone else. They are, in their minds, "Just trying to do the right thing", whereas a character like Lex Luthor openly sees himself as superior, and that's why he's the villain. But if Batman (the most openly Objectivist of all the super-heroes in both thought and deed) were real? We'd all want him locked up for being a lunatic vigilante. We only cheer for him as a fictional character because we see his thought balloons, and are privy to his thoughts and motivations. We know he's inherently selfless, and so we cheer for him despite the fact that his entire raison d'etre is because "I get to do this job because I'm better than everyone else." Which is pretty bluntly Objectivist.

But yeah, there's nothing wrong with a super-hero story leaning into those themes so long as the heroic characters maintain their humility. By definition, the idea that people are allowed to act outside the law without any sanction because they're "better" IS an Objectivist idea. All Snyder did was rip away any veneer to the contrary. But anyone who would claim that Objectivism and super-heroes have nothing in common simply doesn't pay any attention.

- And I stand firmly by my point that if people think Snyder's take was "dour and joyless", and if those same people want something more "hopeful and optimistic" from the property... "Oppressed, Black Superman Fighting Systemic Racism" is NOT the way to get there. We'll see, but I don't see any way that happens. I don't see anything "hopeful" or "optimistic" in being beaten over the head with "White people treat Black people bad" for two hours and change. "His disguise only works because white people can't tell black people apart." Such intelligent and witty social commentary that would be. Give me a break.
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Old 03-06-2021, 04:42 PM   #186
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I actually enjoyed Man of Steel, it's just I strongly feel we really REALLY needed a Man of Steel 2 before all this crossover business. IMO the world barely knew Superman so no one, including the audience should care he dies in BVS. That whole scene in Justice League where he was talking to some kids... ********. At that point kids wouldn't know or care who Superman is, let alone know he's this big hero they're supposed to look up to.

If we were to compare this to the Dark Knight Trilogy where BB was his beginning, TDK was his prime and TDKR is his retirement, it feels like we're missing an entire movie between MoS and BVS. It's like if they only made BB and TDRK. We really needed that movie in between where Superman saved the world from idk... Braniac, Metallo, Parasite, someone before we just up and killed him off.
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Old 03-06-2021, 04:50 PM   #187
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I can see why people feel that way, but I don't think it's all that necessary. The story they chose to tell was that only his sacrifice to save a world that hated and feared him would ever make those people accept him as a hero, which makes perfect sense in context. Before that, for all anyone in that world knew he was just another alien invader like Zod, and he was a very polarizing figure with some people hailing him as a hero and others (like Batman initially) only seeing him as a loose cannon or villain-in-waiting.

The only way to decisively prove that he was none of those things was to make the ultimate sacrifice. Because if he wasn't as pure and goodly as he'd claimed then he wouldn't have so readily given his life for the greater good. The fact that his sacrifice would be what ultimately won his detractors over makes perfect storyline sense. And I think it would have been a bit diluted if he'd been more accepted or popular before that. Like yeah, he could have stopped some alien but would that have really been enough to change those people's minds? I'm not so sure. People would still have doubts. Giving his life to save the world, though? There's no longer any argument about whether or not his motives were pure or altruistic.

I mean look at it like this; Jesus wasn't "JESUS" until he went up on the cross; before that he was just a polarizing figure who some saw as the New Messiah and others saw as a heretic. And the films have always framed Superman's story as a Jesus metaphor going back to the first Donner film. Taking that bit of authorial intent into account, it all makes perfect sense. It's all about the context.

Again, I get why some people would have rather done it the other way, but I disagree that it was fundamentally necessary, and I think it actually does work better for the way they were trying to tell the story.
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Old 03-06-2021, 05:21 PM   #188
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I don't really know much about superhero stuff in general and I don't normally watch superhero movies either. I haven't watched any of all the 500 billion movies that Marvel had pumped out in the last several years.

I watched Man of Steel because I had heard very good things about it, even though the movie had some detractors as well. But you gotta know how to filter what you read and hear about things to determine whether it's worth checking out or not. And my gut instinct told me MoS was worth watching.

And I don't regret my decision one bit. I thought it was a pretty well made movie. Leo656 and possibly other users already stated all the reasons why it's a great movie, so I'm not gonna bother listing those reasons again.
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Old 03-06-2021, 05:38 PM   #189
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Well, there is the whole "Truth, justice, and the American way" thing that everyone in charge has been trying to forcibly downplay since Singer had his rapey little fingers on Superman.
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Old 03-06-2021, 05:58 PM   #190
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To be fair, a lot of that was kinda shoehorned in during WWII to sell war bonds. He was never an uber-patriotic character before that. Then the live-action George Reeves show popularized it but I'd argue that it's not the be-all end-all. "The American Way" is a very vague term, anyway. I know what it's supposed to mean in relationship to Superman, but to be fair it's undeniable that a lot of people have very conflicting opinions about what "The American Way" really means.

I get that it's his catchphrase by default, but... he's always stood For Everyone and he's not beholden to a flag. I'm fine with the phrase being used but I don't really complain if it's missing, either.

Come to think about it... it was always a bit problematic of a phrase, even in its inception. I mean, if we're being completely honest, back in WWII it could be argued that "The American Way" meant "Ignore atrocities on a global scale until they affect you personally, at which point you do get involved but in victory you take all the credit despite the fact you had lots of help." And that's when the phrase first became linked with Superman. So yeah, always something of a questionable message from the beginning.

I'm fairly patriotic so I don't take any specific issue with the phrase, but playing Devil's Advocate I can see why it would annoy or upset some people. Ultimately, the ideals Superman represents are greater than the shifting morality of any one country anyway.
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Old 03-06-2021, 07:38 PM   #191
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To be fair, a lot of that was kinda shoehorned in during WWII to sell war bonds. He was never an uber-patriotic character before that. Then the live-action George Reeves show popularized it but I'd argue that it's not the be-all end-all. "The American Way" is a very vague term, anyway. I know what it's supposed to mean in relationship to Superman, but to be fair it's undeniable that a lot of people have very conflicting opinions about what "The American Way" really means.

I get that it's his catchphrase by default, but... he's always stood For Everyone and he's not beholden to a flag. I'm fine with the phrase being used but I don't really complain if it's missing, either.

Come to think about it... it was always a bit problematic of a phrase, even in its inception. I mean, if we're being completely honest, back in WWII it could be argued that "The American Way" meant "Ignore atrocities on a global scale until they affect you personally, at which point you do get involved but in victory you take all the credit despite the fact you had lots of help." And that's when the phrase first became linked with Superman. So yeah, always something of a questionable message from the beginning.

I'm fairly patriotic so I don't take any specific issue with the phrase, but playing Devil's Advocate I can see why it would annoy or upset some people. Ultimately, the ideals Superman represents are greater than the shifting morality of any one country anyway.
Plus you really... REALLY don't want to know what 'the American way' is nowadays. No way Superman, or Captain America for that matter would stand for the ****ed up mess we represent nowadays.
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Old 03-06-2021, 08:11 PM   #192
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No way Superman, or Captain America for that matter would stand for the ****ed up mess we represent nowadays.
Since the latest election? Yeah, I suppose so. "The American way" is now to hate America.
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Old 03-06-2021, 08:21 PM   #193
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Well, there is the whole "Truth, justice, and the American way" thing that everyone in charge has been trying to forcibly downplay since Singer had his rapey little fingers on Superman.
Dang, until now I hadn't even thought about the creepy moment of Superman spying on his ill-legit son at night being exponentially creepier on account of the director's own history.
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Old 03-06-2021, 08:22 PM   #194
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Since the latest election? Yeah, I suppose so. "The American way" is now to hate America.
Oh it's been like that since 2016. Obviously before that, but it's gotten worse since then.
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Old 03-09-2021, 06:07 PM   #195
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I post on many boards that discuss comic books and comic book movies and converse with many big Superman fans and maybe I'm looking in the wrong places but I've never gotten the impression that Man of Steel is that popular. Maybe it's observational bias but frankly the idea that the movie is held up as the holy grail or even that good within the Superman fan community seems to be more than a little overstated.

I consider myself a fan of the character (although not a devoted one) and while I do like the '78 movie and it's sequel it's not really what I want to see from a modern Superman movie. I've yet to speak to anyone who wants that. Not liking Snyder's take on Superman doesn't mean you want cheesy, happy go lucky Donner movie anymore than not liking any of the newer Batman movies means you want the Adam West version back.

Since we agree on barely anything it wont surprise you when I say that I disagree that superheroes are inherently objectivist concepts. Conceptually you can argue that most comic book superheroes are way too selfless to be described as such, most work within the system of laws some even with governments and law enforcement and usually what makes them 'better' than regular folk is usually a complete accident. A radioactive spider bite, an alien crash lands on earth and gives you a magic ring, an infusion of mongoose blood. Even Superman who is naturally better than humans only gets to be so because his father was a pre-eminent scientist of dying world. You can re-imagine all these superheroes with an objectivist lens but I'm not sure Superman was quite the right choice to do it.

For my money Snyder handled Clark Kent/Superman well enough. It's the world and situations he put him in that were botched. That's why I put so much emphasis on that scene were he kills Zod. I have little issue with Superman using lethal force, Golden Age Supes did it all the time and even modern does it very grudgingly but from a creative stand point if you're going to contrive a situation were a lot of thematic weight rests on his decision whether to kill Zod or not...and other than that scream nothing about Superman's character really changes due to his decision.

The nice interpretation is that the character is too humble to act like a super powered Mr A but if you strip it down the point of Man of Steel is Superman should be that but wont unless pushed to his absolute limit and will never change. That just doesn't sound like a very satisfying message. Like I said I used to think that Snyder likes Superman but thinks he's misguided but all this stuff about Bruce and Lois and de-brainwashed Clark having to raise their child after Batman saves the world seriously has me questioning that. I don't know if I want a black Superman tackling racial injustice but it's certainly a more interesting and no more un-Superman than what Snyder had planned.

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Old 04-06-2021, 08:28 PM   #196
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So it looks like the new Superman movie writer, Ta-Nehisi Paul Coates, is working on Captain America comics and now did a big SJW hit job on Jordan Peterson... making him into the Red Skull/a nazi, basically:

https://variety.com/2021/digital/new...ca-1234945126/
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Old 04-06-2021, 09:01 PM   #197
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Hard to believe there are NINE volumes of Captain America. Seems like that series gets re-launched every 5 years or so.
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Old 04-07-2021, 04:46 AM   #198
Sumac
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Originally Posted by Andrew NDB View Post
So it looks like the new Superman movie writer, Ta-Nehisi Paul Coates, is working on Captain America comics and now did a big SJW hit job on Jordan Peterson... making him into the Red Skull/a nazi, basically:

https://variety.com/2021/digital/new...ca-1234945126/
He is a bit too late - Peterson is not much relevant today anymore.
But whatever makes him feel better, I guess.
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Old 04-07-2021, 04:53 AM   #199
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew NDB View Post
So it looks like the new Superman movie writer, Ta-Nehisi Paul Coates, is working on Captain America comics and now did a big SJW hit job on Jordan Peterson... making him into the Red Skull/a nazi, basically:

https://variety.com/2021/digital/new...ca-1234945126/
He's been writing Captain America since 2018, shortly after Waid had a fun time tidying up the mess left by Secret Empire, only for Coates to tackle some of it's aftermath and tell yet another story of Cap trying to earn back the trust of a a disillusioned American populace, only to be overwhelmed by the rise of alt-right propaganda.
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Old 04-07-2021, 08:41 AM   #200
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Guess some people find the harsh truths that Peterson spits out very hard to swallow.


Also the thought of supervillain Red Skull being some sort of podcast youtuber or whatever is just so incredibly stupid, he might as well be running around stealing kids' homework like the Joker.
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