Clark or Superman?

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Clark or Superman?

Post  thecolorsblend on Wed Nov 02, 2011 12:46 pm

Elliot Maggin was one of THE Superman writers of the 1970's and 80's. Homeboy knows his stuff. His perspective is an important one... but I don't think it's necessarily infallible (for reasons I'll skip here). Mind you, unlike one particular stargazing Apologist, I actually HAVE read this guy's Superman work rather than just relying on what "friends" tell me so I'd like to think I have some perspective here.

Anywho. First, I completely reject that trifecta shit Bryan Singer ran with. The character ultimately has two and only two representations- Clark and Superman. One of those is his true identity and the other is an invention, a disguise.

You can credibly argue a case either way. And Maggin certainly makes his. It's a perfectly valid approach to the character. But at the same time, it's not the only way to skin that particular cat. Clark can be the real character and awesome stories can be and have been told based upon that rubric.

All the same, Maggin's mini-essay is relatively brief and definitely worth reading.

Source URL- http://www.forbes.com/sites/quora/2011/11/01/does-clark-kent-put-on-a-costume-to-become-superman-or-does-superman-put-on-a-costume-to-become-clark-kent

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  webhead2006 on Wed Nov 02, 2011 3:09 pm

Personally i always liked it that clark was who he really is, and superman is what he is able to do. So he has the double life so he can have normacly and still be able to go kick butt when needed.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Apologist Puncher on Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:00 am

I've always preferred the "Clark is who I am, Superman is what I do" version best. Because think about it: When a police officer graduates from the academy, and gets a job, he doesn't STOP being the person he was for the previous 20-something years. He isn't POLICE OFFICER, who masquerades as "Joe Nobody" when he is in his civvies. He is who he has always been, just a police officer too.

That's how I see it, anyway.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  thecolorsblend on Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:04 am

Apologist Puncher wrote:I've always preferred the "Clark is who I am, Superman is what I do" version best. Because think about it: When a police officer graduates from the academy, and gets a job, he doesn't STOP being the person he was for the previous 20-something years. He isn't POLICE OFFICER, who masquerades as "Joe Nobody" when he is in his civvies. He is who he has always been, just a police officer too.

That's how I see it, anyway.
Valid interpretation. But I read some dude make one hell of a persuasive argument that Superman is the character based on the fact that he has all those zillions of powers, he sees everything, hears everything, so on and so forth. That would inherently give you a something-other-than-human perspective. You'd see the beauties and the sins, the grace and the foibles, everything mankind has to offer. Whatever else you'd be, you couldn't well call yours a human perspective.

Frankly, I like SUPERMAN. The core mythos need to be there. If that's in place, odds are good I'll enjoy it.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Apologist Puncher on Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:08 am

thecolorsblend wrote:Valid interpretation. But I read some dude make one hell of a persuasive argument that Superman is the character based on the fact that he has all those zillions of powers, he sees everything, hears everything, so on and so forth. That would inherently give you a something-other-than-human perspective. You'd see the beauties and the sins, the grace and the foibles, everything mankind has to offer. Whatever else you'd be, you couldn't well call yours a human perspective.

Frankly, I like SUPERMAN. The core mythos need to be there. If that's in place, odds are good I'll enjoy it.

Imagine being a police officer, or a detective. You see the WORST in humanity, almost on a daily basis. You'd still call your perspective "human", wouldn't you?

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  thecolorsblend on Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:12 am

Apologist Puncher wrote:Imagine being a police officer, or a detective. You see the WORST in humanity, almost on a daily basis. You'd still call your perspective "human", wouldn't you?
You'd see a lot of bad shit, sure. But would you see the absolute very worst? For that matter, the very BEST? I really don't think so. Not to get all United Nations or anything but Superman's abilities would afford him a global perspective on everything. Sure, a cop can tell you a lot about his local area, perhaps, but I don't think he could quite match Superman in terms of seeing and hearing it all ever since he was a kid. Seeing the best of what mankind has to offer is, I think, one reason Superman is so optimistic. He knows what we're capable of... and because of that (not in spite of it), he has hope.

Again, I'm not the one advancing that argument. Frankly, the guy was raised to think of himself as fundamentally human in most continuities (the Silver and Bronze Ages being notable exceptions) and I think he's coming from a human standpoint.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  non_amos on Thu Nov 03, 2011 12:14 am

Apologist Puncher wrote:

Imagine being a police officer, or a detective. You see the WORST in humanity, almost on a daily basis. You'd still call your perspective "human", wouldn't you?

"I'M BATMAN!" Wink

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  webhead2006 on Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:07 am

For me the reason why I go clark is who he is is he was brought up as a human and has had a normal life give or take growing up. He only becomes superman later in life when he decides to do something of value with the amazing gifts he was given being kryptonian and all.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Comicbookfan-V2 on Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:00 pm

webhead2006 wrote:For me the reason why I go clark is who he is is he was brought up as a human and has had a normal life give or take growing up.

Thats the same reason I thought Clark was the real identity but as for Superman's identity... I believe that guise was use to honor his Kryptonian heritage and to fulfill his biological father's wishes and that is to serve & protect the people of his adopted world and this can be due to the fact that Jor-El perfer his son to succeed where else he have failed and that is to prevent a world/planet's destruction!


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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  thecolorsblend on Thu Nov 03, 2011 9:10 pm

^ I have no clue wtf you just said.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Apologist Puncher on Thu Nov 03, 2011 10:04 pm

thecolorsblend wrote:^ I have no clue wtf you just said.

They both pretty much copied my "police officer" allegory. Just, you know, not as "eloquent"?

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  thecolorsblend on Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:20 pm

Apologist Puncher wrote:
thecolorsblend wrote:^ I have no clue wtf you just said.

They both pretty much copied my "police officer" allegory. Just, you know, not as "eloquent"?
I'm not arguing that all my posts always have perfect spelling, grammar, usage, etc, but at the same time... dude, I'm just not fluent in Broken English.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Apologist Puncher on Thu Nov 03, 2011 11:52 pm

thecolorsblend wrote:I'm not arguing that all my posts always have perfect spelling, grammar, usage, etc, but at the same time... dude, I'm just not fluent in Broken English.


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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  non_amos on Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:01 am

And remember, for Jethro Bodine, 2+2=5! Wink

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Apologist Puncher on Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:12 am

non_amos wrote:And remember, for Jethro Bodine, 2+2=5! Wink


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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  non_amos on Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:19 am

But Jethro was indecisive, i.e., he couldn't make up his mind whether to be a brain surgeon or a fry cook! Laughing

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Re: Clark or Superman?

Post  Apologist Puncher on Fri Nov 04, 2011 12:33 am

non_amos wrote:But Jethro was indecisive, i.e., he couldn't make up his mind whether to be a brain surgeon or a fry cook! Laughing

The same problem a few on here also have, no doubt.

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Re: Clark or Superman?

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