Okay. I've been slowly but surely throwing a lot of shade towards Batman v Superman the past few years, and with it coming out on Friday I've amped that up a lot. I LOVE both those characters and I have NO desire to see that movie. It look like garbage.
But here's the thing: go
back in time to me from high school? That kid would probably be WAY into
Batman v Superman. And that's the whole deal -- it's a very... teenager
way of looking at those characters, and this will seem weird
to say about a bunch of tights wearing musclemen fictitious power
fantasies, but its an interpretation of them I feel I've grown out of.
When you're a child, I think, Batman is Adam West and Superman is
Christopher Reeves. They are safe, protective, competent, kind, father
figures. And then you become a teen, and that's lame. You're cynical,
rebellious, and you want badasses who don't take shit for your heroes,
because you're learning for yourself how not to take shit. So you fall
in love with angry brutal asshole Batman and you want to see Superman
really let loose for once and stop smiling all the time.
But I think
when you reach adulthood, you kind of settle into recognizing the value
of morality. The value of heroes and principles and all of a sudden
that teenage rebelliousness seems really selfish and pigheaded and
*immature*. Because nothing is more immature than that stubborn desire
to seem mature.
And in the 1980s, DC comics wanted to seem mature,
so they put out a lot of grim, violent, "mature" comics that appealed to
teenagers who still enjoyed the power fantasy but didn't want to seem
like babies for reading a superhero comic. And to their credit, those
comics are WELL done, by any artistic or literary standard. And they
sold WELL. But now they've poisoned the entire aesthetic of heroism for
DC until in a movie about the greatest fictional hero of the 20th
century and also Batman, it feels nothing like the aspirational morality
tale it should be, and everything like adolescent macho posturing.
The teenage answer to "Superman is lame" is to make Batman punch
Superman because Superman is lame. The adult answer to "Superman is
lame" is to tell a story that shows you he never was, and neither were
the ideals he stood for.
THE DARK KNIGHT, an excellent Batman
movie, centres around a villain driving Batman again and again to come
to the conclusion that murder is the best solution to his problems and
Batman finding the strength to say no.
MAN OF STEEL, a terrible
Superman movie, centres around a villain driving Superman again and
again to come come to the conclusion that murder is the best solution to
his problems and Superman reluctantly agreeing and doing it.
We're done here, Zack Snyder.