We sit down with Greg Hatcher and Sam Mulvey to continue our talk on vigilante justice, including our feelings about the anti-terrorism torture-sploitation action show that was 24.
We dig into the sad exploits of local “real life superhero” Phoenix Jones and why he turns the superhero-loving Mike into a J. Jonah Jameson.
And we dive into Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and how Zack Snyder’s vision of these characters is equal parts stupid, pretentious and insecure.
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It is kinda Ironic isn’t it, You have a perfect template for a modern day Lex Luthor In the real world. He’s Arrogant, Self-righteous, Owns most of the city he lives in, He is Even Running for PRESIDENT. You could have made Luthor in BVS. A perfect place for a Trump Critique. You didn’t really have to Make new dialogue for him, just use quotes. And yet that did NOT take it. That is how I knew that this movie no longer stood any chance. They just didn’t dare to play out the “Real world” idea to its natural conclusion. That is why I say they stuck their head up their Rear, and be quite content that they could no longer hear the criticism. That is how the house of ideas and good intentions fell for the second time. First, it was Marvel, And now DC. Is it wrong to hope that this will drive them into Bankruptcy as well?
It’s a shame that the gang at Warner can’t see the strength in Superman, when the Marvel folks have shown there is an audience for a virtuous hero, in Captain America. The really sad thing is Superman has always been a beacon of light holding back the darkness of the world. He was born during the Great Depression, saving people from wrongful execution, lynching, slumlords, and those who drive for war for profit. Even as he became less politically daring and reflected more the protector of the status quo, it was an illusion of impartial justice for everyone and the ideals of good government. You can have a dark Superman story; but, he needs to be the vessel of hope. He’s the one who says, “It stops now and I am going to do it; but, I won’t sink to your level to do it. I will find a better way.” That’s the whole point; he’s an ideal. It’s okay for him to falter; but, he keeps trying. Elliot Maggin handles it wonderfully in his second novel, Miracle Monday. Superman is confronted with a demon, a supernatural force against which he has no power. He figures out how to stop the demon: he tells it that he will devote his entire existence to undoing everything the demon does. It’s a completely selfless act and the demon is shown to have no power over Superman. He is defeated and Superman forces him to release the hold he has on an innocent person. The worst kind of darkness is defeated by an act of virtue.
My biggest problem with these films, including all of the Batman movies since Tim Burton, is they have lost any sense of the hero using his brains more than his brawn. The heroes of my Bronze Age youth more often than not out-thought their opponents, rather than out-fought them. Batman uses little or no deductive reasoning to catch the villains r even track them. Adam West portrayed more detective skill than all who followed. Christopher Reeve employed strategy (though not as much as Maggin wrote, in his novels). He saves a train full of people by becoming the collapsed rail, rather than just grabbing the train and lifting it up. Why? because if he did, the cars would probably separate under their own weight. It was a better solution. These modern versions just punch and punch. For all of the psychoses they give Batman, the aversion to guns seems to have slip past their minds. If they wanted Batman to be mentally unstable, he should go ape-shit when someone points a gun at him or an innocent person. Only the first Burton movie even touched on that, at the beginning. After that, he seemed pretty cool about killing and weapons,.
Maggin also wrote the perfect Luthor. he was a genius who was so far beyond everyone else that he was above petty things like laws. The ends justified his acts. He had a deep hatred of Superman, not because he is an alien; but, because he caused the death of his artificial creation, when a fire breaks out in young Lex’s lab. Superboy uses his breath to blow out a fire, but pushes toxic fumes into the protoplasmic lifeform and kills it. That is what sets Luthor off, not the loss of his hair. After that he wants to destroy Superboy/Superman for killing his “child.” However, deep inside, he knows that it’s his fault; he caused the fire through his own negligence. he also knows that if Superman knew the truth he would try to atone and Lex would be forced to forgive him and let go that hatred. It’s that hatred that gives him focus and purpose. And yet, he also accomplishes great good, through various false identities he uses for research or to disguise his creations. One identity is a globetrotting doctor who cures major illness. It’s a complex Lex, which only Smallville, at its best, came close to approaching. The animated series had a nice mix of the corporate billionaire and scientific genius; but, went with the Byrne arrogance and jealousy, rather than the idea that Superman is an alien threat. That was better explored via the Cadmus Arc, in Justice League Unlimited.
What a supplement to the last episode – great conversation all around, gentlemen, I thoroughly enjoyed it.
at least we are getting lego batman