One Month til Superman Returns!

One month from today, Superman Returns will be released. By now most people who are interested have seen the trailers, they are available on the official site. I’m not going to give another in depth analysis of these trailers, as there’s really no point. The film is out in such a short time that I might as well just wait. I will say however that I am still woefully unexcited about this movie, and every day that passes that nothing happens to make me say ‘Wow! I can’t WAIT to see this film!", another little piece of me dies inside.

What I would like to talk about however is Brandon Routh. As I have said since the first promotional material for the film was released, I don’t think he is right for the part. Granted, I haven’t seen the film yet and I could be wrong, but I really don’t believe he is right to play Superman. He looks far too young, especially for a Superman who has been away from earth for five years (he can’t have been a day older than 20 when he left, as an already established Superman – it just doesn’t work), he doesn’t have the right physique, in fact he just doesn’t look impressive or inspiring at all. But worst of all, nobody knows whether or not the guy can actually act. The trailers show NO dialogue of him as Superman, and only a painfully small amount of dialogue of him as Clark. Why so secretive, especially about the one wildcard in the film, the one unknown, and the one the entire movie hinges on? What the trailers do show is a lot of Kevin Spacey’s Luthor. Why? Everyone knows Spacey can act!

So, is Routh right to play Superman? Maybe, I’ll wait and see. But he sure as hell aint no Chris Reeve. I’ve been having arguments with fanboys on internet forums about this (yes, I’m that much of a geek) for a while, and it amazes me how swept away in fads people become. People who had the same opinions as me a year ago now not only bang on about how awesome Routh is going to be, but even go so far as to say how wrong Reeve was. These are die-hard Superman fans, who last year couldn’t believe what a travesty the new Superman suit was, who now can’t get enough of it and make a point of saying how wrong it can be in the comics.

I find it really upsetting. One of the arguments I’ve heard used over and over again is the comparison to James Bond. A lot of people say that audiences accept new actors playing Bond all the time, and no one of them is better than any other. Well, this is complete nonsense for two reasons. First of all, Bond is not a visual character to the extent that Superman is, but secondly, everyone knows that Connery is considered the definitive Bond by the majority of fans, and even those who prefer Moore, Brosnan, Lazenby or Dalton will admit that Connery is the people’s favourite.

Reeve is considred Superman in popular thought. When he had his accident, and then when he died, nearly every newspaper headline across the world (that’s right, I collected them all! – Ok so I didn’t but I’m sure you get the point) announced not news of Christopher Reeve, but of Superman. In Chris Rock’s Bigger and Blacker show, he says "Superman can’t walk! What sort of a @!*&ed up world do we live in where Superman can’t walk! That’s like finding on the news that Aquaman drowned in the tub!" Reeve is not mentioned by name once!

In fact, so sure am I that Christopher Reeve is the one, true Superman, that if Superman was suddenly real and made his debut in the ‘real’ world to prevent some huge disaster, not only would he look like Christopher Reeve, but the Superman: The Movie theme music would start playing out of thin air because the very fabric of the universe would recognise the presence of the real Superman himself!!! 

written by Matt Goldman 

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