Monday, December 20, 2010

Time For A Makeover....

Earth One and Superman's Makeover

Greetings to all the fellow geeks out there! Up to this point I have been largely ignoring the comic community as a whole. Not on purpose mind you, I just have had a
lot of other stuff to cover. So I thought I would rectify that today and hit the blog with a commentary on Superman.
Now Superman is probably one of the most recognizable superheroes. His distinctive outfit to his boy scout sensibility. But now DC has decided to go in a new direction with him. Why?

Well, for starters when the movie series was brought back after a hiatus of 19 years, it was a planned blockbuster. Superman Returns! A sequal to the first 2 movies. Basically the only good ones! Big promotion, big names actors. Grand story line. But while the movie did decent making over 391 million dollars, it wasn't quite the mega blockbuster that superhero movies are supposed to be now. (Considering the fact the movie had a budget of 209 million, you can see why it wasn't all that impressive money wise) It wasn't close to Batman DC's other titan. So what to do.... Well, DC decided a reboot of the series was in order. A dark reboot....

A Test, Repeat, This is a Test

In Oct 2010, DC released the much hyped Superman Earth One. A graphic novel of Superman's origin with some slight twists. Earth One novels in the DC universe are stories that are similar to the Marvel Ultimate universe. Basically a re imaging of the world without touching the continuity of the normal universe. One change in the book is it's much darker story. Instead of Clark Kent boy scout in his suit and tie, we see a brooding 18 year old guy who is trying to figure out what he wants to do with his life. He has the option open to being Superman, but he also might want to be a scientist or a sports star. He has always felt alone, so now he is trying to find his place in the world.
So does it work? In spades. This is the most human we have ever seen Superman.
When you're a kid and you watch Superman, it was all cool. But then you get a little older, and he's not a character you can relate to very well. I mean he is invincible and kind of aloof. He's always going to be better than you. But not this new Superman. He might have God like powers, but he's not invincible or not problem free. Anyone of us can see ourselves as him. That is what makes him so great. That's what makes the new novel so good.

Now the novel has taken some criticism. IGN says it's turned Superman into an angst-ridden cliche. And Comic Book Resource said that the new villain was boring to say the least. Now while some of this might be founded, overall they are wrong. This is a great read. I especially appreciate the reason why Sup doesn't wear a mask. It might be simple, but it's a powerful reason all the same. But despite whether or not it is loved, enough people put up the moolah that there is already a sequel green lit.

Superman 2.0

So what did it all mean? Well, it definitely gave DC comics a clear sign that a darker Kal-El would be a good investment. But ultimately is it good for Superman? In my opinion it is. While some will protest that this really isn't Superman because he is a lighter character than say the ever brooding Batman. And some might complain we don't need another Dark Knight movie. But I see it from the other side myself. Superman is a character that has lost a lot of relevance with the fans. Smallville in some part has helped bring him back though. Because we see what trials he faced as a teenager. So it's good to pass the torch on to a young adult version of Clark.

So bring it on DC. This is the time for a dark new Superman. Let's keep the legend going. And do it in style.

1 comment:

  1. Good post! I hope they make a movie along the lines of earth one. It would be way better than the same old rehashed plots.