Over the holiday break, I decided to watch the newest Superman movie and I was certainly disappointed in the silly story, the rebooting of the franchise, and the awful acting of the lead character. Superman should be wily, and funny, and tough. He never preens.
It’s always boring when movie production houses feel they have to re-start a story that’s been never-endingly told for generations. We pretty much know the backstory of Superman and we don’t need to re-live, over and over again, every 10 years or so, just how the star child becomes the Superman on earth.
In my short life, I think I’ve lived through at least a dozen iterations of Superman in film and on television and I would be perfectly fine to have a new Superman just appear in media res. We get it he’s special and Superhuman, so just drop him in and let the story start with no explanation necessary!
When I was a wee lad, I had job at a radio station. I was lucky enough to work on both the AM and FM sides of the dial. The FM station was known as X103 and we were in the prehistoric rotary dial days before the Age of Digital Radio Tuners. One night, I was working on the FM side, and a listener called and told me he’d just spent $5,000.00USD on a new home stereo rig and his FM tuner was digital and our station was coming in clearest at 102.7 and not 103. He asked me why that was, and I told him that the station was actually broadcasting at 102.7, but that the rotary dial methods made 103 close enough for advertising purposes. The caller grunted and told me to fix it. A few years later, “X103” was gone, replaced by: “102.7 FM.”
In the early 1980’s, I was told by the radio station I had to work a weekend car expo for X103. I wasn’t thrilled about it, but I was the low man on the hiring pole and they were going to pay me time and a half, so standing around for six hours handing out X103 car window stickers would at least stick some money in my pocket. I was also told that Adam West, aka Batman, had been hired and flown in from California to appear with me at the X103 van. Adam would be dressed in full Batman regalia. I was surprised that a big star like Adam West would be in Lincoln, Nebraska at a car show standing next to me.
I am fascinated by the manufactured outrage over Christian “The Dark Knight” Bale’s caught-on-tape-on-set cursing tirade during the filming of “Terminator Salvation.”
Batman is dead. His own dead father killed him.
The end of the world is nigh when Batman and Robin comic books include curse words in order to shock and entertain a jaded and bored fanbase.
“The Dark Knight” — the new Batman movie — make $155 million over the weekend. One cannot help wondering what sort of message the movie reflects in us considering its vast amounts of spilled guts, buckets of blood and unmitigated gore. How do we contend with the strange, inhuman, joy found in the shared popularity of public killings?
Heath Ledger is dead at 28. If he were not famous — would he deserve the celebrity mega-media coverage being blanketed upon us in the wake of his wake?