Philosophy, War, and Challenging Conventions: Why Zack Snyder Should Direct an ‘Animorphs’ Movie

From Dawn of the Dead to Legend of the Guardians: The Owls of Ga’Hoole to Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Zack Snyder has demonstrated his skill with both stunning visuals and deeply heartfelt moments. Animorphs beautifully blends action and emotion, as I discussed in this post. A movie adaptation wouldn’t necessarily be a great idea. A lot happens over a period of several years, and nearly all of the books contribute something valuable and meaningful. Even most of the fillers were good character pieces. It would be easy to lose some of that impact by trying to condense the story into one movie. In that regard, another attempt at a TV series would probably be a better adaptation. It would allow for more accuracy, as well as a less rushed seeming story. However, if the series were ever adapted into a movie, who better to take on the challenge than Zack Snyder?

Visual Storytelling

A major part of what makes Animorphs special is the characters and their internal turmoil. Each book is written in first person, and some of the most poignant quotes aren’t dialogue but part of their internal commentary. It’s something that would be really hard to bring across in an adaptation without excessive voiceovers, which is where Snyder would be perfect. He’s a very visual storyteller. His scripts don’t have any wasted words. He doesn’t tell, he shows. He’d be able to bring across all the emotion in those scenes without overusing voiceovers.

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Clark saying goodbye to Lois in ‘Batman v Superman’. [Credit: Warner Bros].
Snyder is the king of a distinctive visual style and subverting common tropes. We know for certain that Snyder’s not afraid of so-called silly topics. He’s made his career on geeky interests and comic book movies, after all. He makes bold choices and tries new things instead of constantly playing it safe. He uses his awesome visual sense and artistic eye to create beautiful, epic, memorable scenes in movies based on comic books. I’d love to see him take on the action sequences in Animorphs. They’re all fast paced, bloody, and almost ridiculously violent. They’re horrifyingly graphic, and Snyder is bold enough to commit to that.

Apart from his visual skills, Snyder specializes in philosophy. I still think Batman v Superman is his best work yet because of that. Animorphs is a masterpiece that beautifully questions right vs wrong and never flinches from discussing the realities of war. Snyder often works with religious philosophy, which isn’t the main thematic element in Animorphs, but the issues stemming from the morality of war would be something a little different that he could pull off beautifully. He conveys complicated issues clearly without oversimplifying them. He has mastered the art of making people take things seriously. A huge part of what makes his work special to me is that he clearly enjoys what he does and has fun working in the superhero genre without making fun of that genre. Adapting Animorphs would be a challenge he’s perfect for.

Most of all, though? Snyder’s strength is embracing all of those issues in the big blockbuster type movies that earn lots of money, in a way that a lot of people just don’t see. That’s exactly what Animorphs was. Everyone has at least heard of them. With the perception of them today, both among fans and people that haven’t read them, it’s easy to forget that they were hugely popular in their heyday. They were one of the best selling children’s series ever.

Prominence of Female Characters

Every movie Snyder has made has featured complex, awesome women that are completely different from each other. And his idea of a strong female character isn’t just one that punches people. No, his idea of a strong female character is a smart, brilliant journalist that isn’t a fighter, but is brave enough to stand between her injured boyfriend and the raging vigilante holding a spear that’s trying to kill him and is so important that Superman considers her his world, and the Flash travels back in time to tell Batman that she’s the key. Is a senator that’s not going to bow down to special interests just because she has somewhat similar reservations. Is a victim that fights back when against impossible odds and rendered almost powerless. They certainly can get into physical fights, but that’s far from all they are.

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Babydoll in ‘Sucker Punch’. [Credit: Warner Bros].
Animorphs has fantastic female characters, and I’d love to see Snyder’s take on them. From Rachel, the smart, talented, beautiful golden girl who got thrown into a war and learned she liked it to Cassie, the perceptive, kind, manipulative killer that hated all the violence but was nonetheless more dangerous than Rachel the Blood Knight to Eva, the mother that calmly walked right back into slavery because it was either that or risk open war that would kill billions of people when her slaver was no longer in power, the female characters were just as fully realized as the male.

Deconstruction of Conventions

Animorphs embraces a lot of dark topics. It’s a complete deconstruction of everything you’d expect from a kids’ series about aliens and saving the world. It’s also hysterically funny – made doubly so by how ridiculously nineties it is – with an underlying theme of hope. One book featured the lead characters staging an incompetent rescue of an android from a mall using a Bill Clinton mask, a misspelled sandwich board sign, a lava lamp, and Tommy Hilfiger underwear. One of the books was an extended reference to Yeats’s The Second Coming. The entire series is very reminiscent of Kafka. The last book was dedicated to the aftermath of a three year war and the ways in which the characters recovered – and didn’t – from the trauma of being child soldiers. It refuses to ever be pigeonholed as just one thing. It’s a science fiction war story about slavery and morality that’s told as the story of a bunch of idiot kids trying to save the world.

Snyder is fantastic at deconstructing tropes. Batman v Superman is a political drama on top of an action movie with superheroes. He has directed all sorts of cool, kind of trippy takes on classic genres. I wrote about how Batman v Superman and Man of Steel deconstructed the superhero genre here, and I think the ways in which it does are similar to the ways in which Animorphs deconstructs the sci-fi adventure genre. If Animorphs were better known, I’m sure a lot of people would decry it as “grim-dark”, like they did with BvS. It’s not. It’s grounded. It’s not dark for the sake of being dark, it’s dark because it’s a war story. And Snyder could do it justice better than anyone else.

Implementation

Animorphs shouldn’t be compressed into just one movie. It would need a series to do it justice. If I had to choose just one book for Snyder to adapt, though, I’d have to go with a combination of The Andalite Chronicles and The Hork-Bajir Chronicles, two of the prequels to the main series.  I’d have to sacrifice his take on the main protagonists of the series, but the Chronicles are some of my very favourite books in the series, and it would suit his directing very well.

These two books are set on multiple different planets, which would make full use of his skill with world building. They have a wide range of characters from different backgrounds – the idealistic scientist whose greatest wish was for the sentient species of the universe to explore the stars together; the person who had never known war or violence but found himself forced in the position of leading an army to defend his people’s freedom; the jaded, cynical warrior that had lost friends and becoming willing to do whatever it took to win.

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Krypton, depicted in ‘Man of Steel’. [Credit: Warner Bros].
Ethical issues galore, the difficulty of doing the right thing, complicated and well developed character dynamics – these two books capture a lot of the essence of what Animorphs is while being more self contained than any part of the main series.

Animorphs the book series was geared towards children, just like the TV show. But if a movie were to be made, and made accurately, it couldn’t be. I love the books, but even so, they probably traumatized me for life. There’s a scene in one of them where one of the characters loses an arm, then uses said arm as a club. The first book opens with an alien being eaten alive. Those are things you can apparently get away with in books. Not so in film. So even if Snyder – or any director that would commit to an accurate adaptation – were interested, it seems highly unlikely that any studio would go for an R-rated adaptation of a children’s series.

If more people gave Animorphs a chance, they’d love it. These books are dark. They never, ever shy away from discussing trauma. They’re so clearly an anti-war message that deals with slavery and the ethics of combat and intergalactic politics. But they’re also hilariousEven today, years after I read them for the first time, when I reread them, I still laugh, because the teammate is a slacker who mainly paid attention to girls and sports while in class and loves cinnamon buns and soap operas and caused a scene in a movie theatre because he’d never eaten chocolate before. A Snyder adaptation of it would open a lot of people’s eyes to how fantastic a series it is.

Zack Snyder is a perfect fit for an Animorphs movie because of his grasp on how to present philosophical ideas, his distinctive style, and his treatment of women. This movie will probably never happen, but if it did, it would have the potential to be one of the best science-fiction adaptations ever made.

Superman and the Übermensch: Morality in the DC Extended Universe

I’ve talked before about how Batman v Superman counters Nietzsche’s philosophy in this post. In it, I briefly mention Nietzsche’s idea of the Übermensch. In a similar fashion to how it subverted the concept of the death of God, BvS subverts the concept of the übermensch.

Nietzsche considered the übermensch the ideal, superior man, someone who could rise above conventional morality to define and impose his own values on the world. He believed this to be what humanity should aspire to. This idea partially inspired the creation of Superman, and it was explored very interestingly in the DCEU.

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The übermensch is a scary concept. The idea of someone that can and will do whatever he wants to is terrifying. That’s the perspective from which a lot of people regarded Superman in BvS – their fear of the übermensch overrode their sense of reason and stopped them from considering the fact that the only thing he had ever demonstrating wanting to do was help out and save lives.

Batman v Superman takes on the übermensch in the style of Crime and Punishment. Superman is the übermensch in a very literal way – he’s the man from above, the alien sent to Earth. Kal El wasn’t born on Earth. He had immense powers that enable him to do things no human can. There would be no way for humans to stop him from doing whatever he liked. A major theme in Batman v Superman is the fear that people have about how it would be impossible to force Superman to comply. He could impose his will on the entire planet – the Knightmare sequence made that very clear. But he doesn’t. He provides a sharp contrast to Zod and the other Kryptonians in Man of Steel. They acted as colonialists, seeking to change the world they found to suit them, whereas Clark was an immigrant and refugee that understood and cared for both the planet that had become his home and its inhabitants.

Even when he disagrees with humans – General Swanwick, Senator Finch – that want him to be accountable to someone, he doesn’t disagree with their position on accountability. He lets the military handcuff him because it would help them feel more secure. He goes to a Senate hearing because he knows the people have a right to the truth. Clark doesn’t use his powers to interfere in politics or international affairs or to stop people from making their own choices. He uses it to help people, to inspire them and give them hope. Throughout both Man of Steel and Batman v Superman, the majority of his actions weren’t to do with fighting anyone – he was saving people, rescuing them from fires and natural disasters.

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Clark is constantly second guessing himself. He could do just about anything, but he worries about what he should. He spends all of BvS asking himself what the right thing to do is. From questioning whether he was causing more harm than good to saying, “No one stays good in this world” when he finds out Lex has his mother but still choosing to talk first, not fight. He could do whatever he felt like. But he doesn’t. He carefully considers his actions, doubts himself, and ultimately does what he thinks is right according to the morality instilled in him by his human parents.

Batman takes steps towards becoming something akin to the übermensch when he ignores morality. He brands people; he doesn’t care about collateral damage; he goes so far as to appoint himself judge, jury, and executioner and attempt to murder an innocent man. It’s immoral, but he’s decided it’s necessary and doesn’t care any more. His sense of right and wrong, of justice, is warped, but he can justify it to himself and he doesn’t feel guilty about any of it. Unlike Clark, he doesn’t question what he’s doing at all, not until Clark used what he thought were his dying breaths to ask him to save Martha Kent. And when that happens, Bruce realizes what he was doing was wrong, that no one should be making unilateral decisions like that.

Clark brings Bruce back. He doesn’t impose his own values on others – he inspires them to uphold the values he was taught, that he believes in, because he believes in them so sincerely that other people see hope when they look at him. And the reason he can do this is because despite his physical superiority, he never considers humanity inferior to him. He sees people worshipping him as a god, and he’s saddened and feels alienated. He sees a statue of himself and worries about the people he couldn’t save.

BvS makes it clear that morality isn’t something to rise above, distinguishing it from Nietzsche. At the same time, Clark is depicted as what we should aspire to be. But what makes him worthy of that isn’t his strength, his intellect, or any such thing – it’s his decency. His goodness. His belief that everyone around him is valuable and worth saving, that he isn’t a superior being just by virtue of his powers. It’s a beautiful exploration of philosophy, and a wonderful study of humanity in a world of superpowers.

DC, SDCC, and Awesome Trailers

DC puts out an amazing show for Comic Con every year. Last year, they managed to put together the special footage for Justice League, a movie that was a year and a half away at the time, while they were in the middle of filming. I had expected a few stills, or maybe a snippet of a scene. Nope! They put together an incredible first look.

Now, we’re only a few months away from the movie, and the trailer was confirmed before SDCC. I was so excited for this trailer, and it didn’t disappoint at all. It’s not that we needed to see it at all – the material we got before this did its job and hyped us up and left us wanting more – but we did want it, and I’m certainly not going to complain about DC giving me exactly what I wanted.

I have a soft spot for last year’s Comic Con footage, because that was the first look we got at the movie, and it looked great, and it started to hit me that this movie is actually happening, but everything we’ve gotten has been amazing. This trailer was no exception.

Going into this, knowing that we’d already gotten a mostly lighthearted official trailer and Comic Con footage that was essentially a trailer, I was hoping for something a little more serious, a little more thoughtful and introspective, like that gorgeous Man of Steel trailer with Jonathan Kent’s voice over, because as great as Snyder’s bombastic action sequences are, he’s at his best with the slow, quiet, beautiful scenes. I’d wanted more Cyborg, because it seemed like we’d gotten less of him than we had anyone else, and perhaps just a hint of Superman – a flash of his cape, a shot of the S, a mention of his name.

What we got was more serious than the others, and it was great. It wasn’t the MoS level, but it was heartfelt and wonderful. There were still a few jokes, and it wasn’t BvS level heavy, but we got references to Clark and how he’s a beacon of hope, Alfred talking to someone that probably was him – there was a flash of red at the bottom that could have been his cape, more Victor, references to the Green Lantern Corps. It was stunning, and I adored it.

Alfred Justice League SDCC trailer
Credit: Warner Bros.

I hate the word fun to describe movies, especially because of how it’s been used as a criticism of Batman v Superman being a serious movie. But I kind of have to use it with this anyway. This movie is going to be fun and entertaining and enjoyable. It’s still going to be a DCEU movie, a Zack Snyder movie – thoughtful, emotional, meticulously made – but it’s going to be lighter and gentler than Batman v Superman. We’ve seen that in the trailers. And that’s great. The varying tones and amount of emotional weight in the DCEU movies mean that I’m always going to have one of them I can watch, no matter my mood.

Justice League is obviously the conclusion to a story arc. It’s the lightness that comes after everyone has hit their lowest, darkest point and worked through it. And to me, that makes it a very satisfying, cathartic concept and a much richer story than had we just gotten this movie without Man of Steel and Batman v Superman preceding it. However, it’s undeniable that this movie is going to be much more in line with what critics and the general audience wants – lighter, more jokes.

I loved Man of Steel and Batman v Superman because every time I rewatch them, I catch something that I missed before. Because they’re layered and gorgeous and wonderful. They’re clever and detailed without ever being pretentious. These are movies that were clearly made by a director that loves movies, loves superheroes, loves stories. Zack Snyder doesn’t take our intelligence for granted at all. In Man of Steel, he gently guided us in the direction he wanted to go. After people apparently thought that was too subtle, he made aspects of BvS very pointed and direct, while never sacrificing the artistry or being overly in your face, and even then, he’s probably giving most viewers too much credit. Like other people have said – it’s probably the world’s most expensive indie movie. How people think his movies are just dumb action flicks where things blow up is beyond me.

I know I’m going to love Justice League. It’s going to have all the heart, emotion, beautifully written characters, and incredibly shot action sequences that the previous DCEU movies had, while never feeling like the same old thing rehashed again. The people involved with making it – Snyder, Terrio, the producers, even DC and WB – are clearly willing to take risks. They make movies that are anything but generic. Even the trailers show that off. When Justice League is great, it’s not going to be because Snyder capitulated to what critics wanted. It’ll be because he stayed true to his vision and carefully guided it through a story arc to create a smooth, elegantly developed, well paced trilogy. He earned his lightness because he went to a dark place with BvS.

 

You know the “reaction videos” that are always on Youtube? The ones where people watch trailers and sometimes talk about them? I know they’re kind of stupid, and it’s not like most of the people reacting are saying anything interesting or unique, and their reactions are almost always over the top and unnatural, but I find myself watching them anyway, just because I love the sense of companionship stemming from watching a trailer while someone else does and getting excited about it together. It’s such a cozy feeling. I’ve finally found a few people that can talk about how they’re excited for a different DC movie without complaining about Batman v Superman, and it’s amazing. I can’t wait for more of those videos uploaded, I need to watch like ten.

What did you guys think? Let me know!

Justice League, Anticipation, and Geeking Out A Ridiculous Amount

When Wonder Woman came out, it felt surreal. It didn’t feel like it was actually happening until I was sitting in that theatre. It felt like a movie I’d been waiting for forever that I was in shock I was actually getting to see. Justice League? It’s going to be that feeling times ten.

The movie isn’t coming out until November. That’s five months.  That’s still a long time to wait. But compared to how long I’ve been waiting to see it, it’s no time at all.

Don’t get me wrong, I was incredibly excited to see Wonder Woman. And I loved it. But that was just Wonder Woman. Justice League is going to have her, Superman, and Batman together again in the same movie, like in Batman v Superman, except there’ll be more, because she’ll be more than an extended cameo, she’ll be a character. It’s going to have Aquaman and the Flash and Cyborg, for the first time ever on the big screen. It’s going to have Mera. The League is going to fight Parademons together.

Thinking about this movie – and the fact that we’re getting another trailer in a month – makes me grin like an idiot. It’s going to come out on the anniversary of the Justice League cartoon first airing. The Justice League is finally going to come together, and we’re going to get to see all of them together. I’m going to be there opening night.

Even aside from the this is so awesome geeking out, it’s going to be so satisfying to watch this movie. It’ll be the epic conclusion to a three part story. We’ll finally get to see the entirety of Zack Snyder’s vision brought to fruition. Wonder Woman was excellent, and Suicide Squad was entertaining, even if it was a bit messy compared to the other entries in the DCEU, but Man of Steel, Batman v Superman, and Justice League are/will be the core of this universe. Superman is the heart, and he was the catalyst for the formation of the League.

…Can it be November yet?

Zack Snyder and Comicbook Fan Entitlement

Zack Snyder has always been a controversial director to say the least. I personally adore his work, but a very vocal aspect of the audience detests everything he’s ever made, and oftentimes, the line between what’s fair game – film related opinions and criticism that isn’t “this is stupid and terrible and people who enjoy it are dumb fanboys” – and what’s just mean spirited personal attacks. Not liking a movie is one thing. Treating a director like garbage over it is an entirely different issue.

Some of the responses to his announcement that he’s stepping down from Justice League to be with his family as they recover from his daughter’s death have been absolutely repulsive. There are people that have taken the opportunity to reiterate the fact that they hate his movies. People that have delighted in the fact that he’s not going to be finishing the last bit of the movie that remains to be done and celebrated his departure, even though he’s mourning a tragic loss. There have even been people making jokes about how his movies were the reason for his daughter’s suicide. It’s horrific. A young woman died. He lost his child. This is so much more important than a movie.

Something I’ve noticed is that a huge number of people felt the need to show sympathy for Snyder by prefacing their statement with something along the lines of, “I don’t like his movies, but…” It’s so unnecessary! It’s so uncalled for!

Comicbook fans have gotten so, so entitled. Of course not all of them – all of us – but a not insignificant part. These people refuse to let a movie be for someone else. They refuse to accept that someone else’s perception of seventy year old characters can be just as valid as their own. And so instead of accepting that, accepting that Snyder’s version isn’t for them, they claim that he’s wrong and his work is awful and attack him for “ruining” their childhood favourites, so much so that Snyder felt he had to divulge something this incredibly personal because people on the Internet would start pushing narratives if he didn’t explain.

But superhero comics have been going on for decades. Through comics and television and film, through every sort of medium imaginable, they’ve become an essential part of pop culture. I started reading comics when I was six, but even before that, even before I saw any DC movie, I knew about Batman and Robin being partners. About Superman loving Lois Lane. These characters are a part of our public consciousness. They belong to all of us, and there’s not just one way they have to be.

In addition to the attacks on Snyder and the refusal to express condolences without adding on that they don’t like his movies, there’s another subset of people out there that I find just as abhorrent at the moment, and those are the ones worrying about the movie and complaining about Joss Whedon, saying he’s going to ruin it. A man lost his daughter and stepped away to grieve. Justice League is just a movie. I’ve been looking forward to it for a long time, too, and I’m still excited to see it, but it’s just a movie. It’s nothing compared to a human life.

But aside from all of this, there has also been an outpouring of support for him and his family, both from fans and people decent enough to not bring up the fact that they don’t like his vision while expressing condolences. It’s a reminder that even when there are people out there that don’t care about others and treating people with respect and kindness, there are still decent people out there. It’s a reminder that men are still good. Thank you, Mr. Snyder. Best wishes.

Superhero Movies and Lifelong Favourites

On Thursday afternoon, I was in class, taking a quantum physics quiz. I had an hour long gap between the end of that quiz and the start of a robotics meeting. I checked my phone once I got out of class and found out we’re getting a Nightwing movie. Needless to say, I freaked out.

adore Nightwing with all my heart. The first comic I ever read was about him. He was the reason I got into comics at all. It was through him that I discovered the rest of the Batfamily. I’ve been wanting a movie about him for years. And I also love the DC Extended Universe. I used to claim that I’d go see every single Batman movie in theatres until one was done right. And Zack Snyder brought me that Batman in Batman v Superman, a Batman that’s unbelievably accurate to the character I love from the comics. This Bruce is obsessive and driven and paranoid, while still being dedicating to protecting the world and the city he loves. Snyder brought me a Clark Kent that’s more than just unrelenting optimism and cheerfulness and a caricature of a person – he brought me the story of an immigrant that’s never known another home. A person that’s forced to confront a world that he loves that’s afraid of him. A man that’s not an god, nor a devil, just a guy trying to do the right thing. Someone that’s flawed, deeply human, and fundamentally good. Someone that just loves his mom and his girlfriend and believes in using his powers to help people.

And all of that? That’s why the idea of a Nightwing movie terrifies me just as much as it excites me.

I love the DCEU. I love the representation of the iconic characters we’ve gotten so far. I love that we’re getting a Wonder Woman movie in June that looks incredible. I’m super excited to see Justice League. All the announced movies make my inner nerd scream.

I love Dick Grayson. He’s a character that’s been called the heart of the DC Universe. He’s topped lists of comicbook readers’ favourite heroes before – above Batman, above Superman. I’m so excited to see him in the DCEU, finally getting the treatment that he as an iconic character deserves.

But there is so much that could go wrong.

One of the difficulties in making a DC movie is that all of the characters are so iconic. Everyone has a set image of who they are, even if it’s not always accurate to what’s there in the comics. Even if what’s there in the comics has changed a lot over the years and in the hands of different writers. It makes it hard to try something new and unexpected – people are going to object and scream about it not being their version of the character.

Dick is an incredible character. He was the original sidekick, and he became his own hero. Even became Batman. He’s Batman’s most trusted ally. He’s Bruce’s oldest son. He’s the lynchpin of the DC Universe. All the other Robins came about as an attempt to fill the void he left. Bruce has described him as the only thing he’s ever done right. He’s so much more than just Batman’s sidekick, than just lighthearted comic relief. He’s a full fledged character in his own right.

If this movie doesn’t encompass all of that, it’ll break my heart.

I haven’t seen Lego Batman, and the director of that is supposedly going to direct this. I would trust Zack Snyder with it completely, but I’m so nervous at my favourite character being put into the hands of someone who hasn’t done anything else like this before.

But I’m still going to be there opening night. Don’t let us down, Chris McKay!

In Defence of Man of Steel

A repost from my deleted blog.

Seeing as Batman v Superman is coming out next month and I’m indescribably excited about that, I think I’m going to take a few minutes to defend Man of Steel as a movie, because I think it gets a lot of unfair criticism.

The first complaint is that Superman killed Zod. Yeah, I get why people complain about Superman, the quintessential hero, killing someone. But I disagree – in the context of the movie, it makes a lot of sense. Clark wants to do what’s right. He doesn’t want to hurt anyone. But he also wants to protect the people that need him.

Clark killing Zod was him making a choice. It was him choosing humanity over the memory of Krypton, his adoptive family over his birth family – both literally and symbolically. That’s something that’s always been a part of Clark’s story. He’s an alien, but he’s also a Kansas farmboy. Clark’s only way to save that family was to kill Zod, because Zod wasn’t going to stop, no matter what. To Clark, it wasn’t even a choice – no matter how much he wanted to not have to use his powers to hurt, he’d do it if it meant saving more people.

That’s what makes him a hero. Obviously, killing in itself isn’t a heroic thing. But Clark was the only one who could have stopped Zod, and he did what he had to in order to defend people that couldn’t defend themselves. He put their needs ahead of his own sense of morality, his mental and emotional health.

The other main complaint I see is that he didn’t try to prevent collateral damage. I think the amount of damage that happened was actually really important to the story they’re trying to tell, and I really appreciated it. One problem that I’ve always had with superhero movies is that they’re ridiculously unrealistic. Not in the sense of a person having Superman’s powers, I don’t mean that. What I do mean is in terms of the reactions people have to someone with those powers, the reactions someone has to an alien invasion. It’s one of the problems I’ve always had with Avengers – it never acknowledged the damage caused to New York. An army of aliens, all with Superman’s powers, would absolutely have a huge impact. I love that the DCEU isn’t shying away from that.

I like that while Superman inspires hope, he also draws criticism and fear. I like that the damage caused is actually being addressed. I love that Superman’s role in the destruction played a role in Bruce’s mistrust of him.

Even beyond the role the destruction plays in the story and how it grounds it in reality, it also makes sense. On the side of Earth, you have an army and you have Superman, who despite his strength and his powers, isn’t a fighter – he’s spent his life trying to control them. He’s a new hero. The army didn’t help matters in terms of the amount of destruction at all. They were opposed by trained soldiers with all of Superman’s powers. Clark really didn’t have much control over the situation at all.

Man of Steel was a great story, and a fantastic take on Superman. It acknowledged Clark’s limitations, as well as the fact that he’s never going to stop defending humanity. The combination of bold story choices, stunning visuals, and a new perspective on classic ideas make it a beautiful and memorable addition to the genre.