The new Superman movie Man Of Steel came out in theatres last week, giving many of my friends and the city of Pittsburgh a collective Super-boner. The movie was promised to be incredible, beautiful, and something to rival other recent superhero franchises; however, despite the steely gaze of Henry Cavill, the movie has thus far received a lukewarm 57% on Rotten Tomatoes. Critics have called it beautiful-looking for the most part, but sad and brooding with too slow a start to overcome the tepidity. It sounds like the director, Zack Snyder, is suffering from a bit of the ol’ Nolan bug. Now, I haven’t seen the movie, nor do I have any intention of seeing it, but if you have and want to leave a long angry rant in the comments, go for it.
To be upfront and fair — I’ve never liked Superman. When I was a kid, I would watch every cartoon, including Superman, but even then I only did so reluctantly because it was on TV and I sure as hell wasn’t going to go outside. I’ve since come across many friends who are vehement Superman fans, all of whom are baffled by my lack of love for one Clark Kent. To be doubly fair, I’ve only done a moderate amount of research for this post, so I’m sure someone out there will have answers to my many questions. To that person I say: “I do not care… at all.”
So without further ado, I give you my twelve reasons why Superman sucks.
1. The suit. What originally began as a slim fit snuggie with red undies on the outside has transformed into a Kevlar scuba suit. Joan Rivers will tear you apart.
2. Why does he need a super suit? He’s supposedly indestructible, so why doesn’t he just wear a t-shirt and jeans, Hulk-style? Seems more cost effective…
3. Supposedly the “S” on his chest has stood for Superman (duh), some Native American snake symbol (pandering?), his alien family’s coat of arms (Game of Thrones?), and the Kryptonian symbol for hope. That last one is my favorite. Look Clark, if you want to be associated with hope, why not just wear an H? It seems considerably simpler. You know why that Obama sign was so popularly associated with the word “hope?” Because it said HOPE on the goddamn sign.
4. The cape. So far as I can tell, Superman’s serves no serious or easily deduced purpose aside from looking majestic. If it were, say, bulletproof that would perhaps make some sense until you think, “Wait, isn’t he invulnerable already?” Just seems like a liability and waste of cloth to me. Go clothe a small homeless orphan with it instead.
5. You’re from Kansas. I’m from Kansas. I love Kansas. Stop associating with me. I don’t want to be your friend.
6. Why are you all mopey about Krypton being destroyed? You were there for a few days tops–days that you don’t even remember–before your parents (to their credit) blasted you off into space. They even chose a planet that coincidently had organisms that looked exactly the same as you. Seriously, you didn’t even know about Krypton until you were like ten! To top it all off, you were blessed with a loving, white, middle-class family from the Midwest who have been kind enough to keep your secret. Take some Xanax, bud.
7. According to Wikipedia, Krypton was 50 light years away from our solar system. In a galactic sense, that’s next door. In a human sense, that’s really far away. Now assuming that somehow Superman’s magic baby rocket can move at the speed of light, he would still land on Earth as a middle-aged man. Also according to Wikipedia, Kryptonians had found a way to slow aging, but from what we’ve seen, this hasn’t happened to Superman so he still should have landed as a grown man rather than an infant. Finally, if Krypton didn’t explode that long ago, how come no one ever said anything about that giant explosion in the sky? Get on your game, NASA.
8. Kryptonite may be my favorite reason to hate on Superman. Kryptonite is little chunks of Krypton that have fallen to Earth that glow green for whatever reason. Whenever Superman is near it, he loses his powers. Fine, I get it, all superheroes need a weakness, but seriously? A rock is your weakness? To top it all off, this stuff is supposed to be crazy hard to obtain and yet it seems like EVERY villain (and Batman) has a piece of the stuff. Seems a bit too convenient for my tastes.
9. Superman was more or less the first modern superhero. Superheroes are strong, righteous, and good. Except Superman takes it a step or seven further. He’s too perfect. Essentially, he’s the Jesus of superheroes. No one likes to hear about Mr. Perfect. Readers like conflict, inner struggle, and some darkness. #teambatman
10. In addition to that, he has too many superpowers. To quote Cracked.com, “Superman can do anything except stuff he hasn’t tried yet.” Kind of strikes me as one hell of a deus ex machina.
11. Clark Kent gives the working class a bad name. He disappears on a regular basis without any explanation. If I did that, I’d get fired in a heartbeat and I just work in a café. He and Peter Parker should bond over what terrible (and somehow still employed) journalists they are.
12. Most superheroes drastically alter their appearance and/or put on masks when switching from their “mild-mannered” selves to their super alter egos. Clark Kent has no mask and uses a phone booth. Perhaps everyone in Metropolis is just stupid but I think I would still recognize my friends if they took their glasses off and put mousse in their hair. Also, why on earth would you pick a phone booth to change in? Phone booths are transparent. People would see you take your suit off. What does he do with all his clothes? Just leave them? Is there is a Goodwill out there with just dozens of nice suits exclusively for broad 6-foot-something men?
In conclusion, don’t see Man of Steel.