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  1. #31
    Ultimate Member Ascended's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Which is a good thing. Does anyone want Grounded back in canon? There was a lot of junk that’s better just left behind.
    I'd be quite happy to get the Superman Squadron back, but other than that and a very brief appearance by an interesting concept for Super-Chief......no, I'm happy to pretend that never happened. Though I'll be pretending that whether DC says its in continuity or not.

    If it did happen, it happened very differently since now Clark was a father during that time. We're not going back to post-Crisis just the way it was, ever.
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  2. #32
    Death becomes you Osiris-Rex's Avatar
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    Jonathan and Martha Kent were alive on the TV show Lois & Clark and that seemed to work out pretty well.

  3. #33
    Spectacular Member mikelmcknight72's Avatar
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    SiegePerilous02: I'm not saying it made him dark. What I am saying is that the loss of his birth world is more than sufficient tragedy for a character like Superman. I also think you gain far more opportunities for character development & story with them alive than you do with them dead. Plus, their deaths are generally not hardwired into his origin.

  4. #34
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikelmcknight72 View Post
    SiegePerilous02: I'm not saying it made him dark. What I am saying is that the loss of his birth world is more than sufficient tragedy for a character like Superman. I also think you gain far more opportunities for character development & story with them alive than you do with them dead. Plus, their deaths are generally not hardwired into his origin.
    Not as long as they’re going with the “Human first” characterization for Clark. Clark really has no personal connection whatsoever to Krypton and thus its loss fails to be really meaningful for him outside of “what could my life have been like?” This is especially true when his life on Earth is so great with both his adopted parents alive and well, and he’s married to Lois with Jon. There’s no meaningful internal conflicts for him at that point.
    Quote Originally Posted by Osiris-Rex View Post
    Jonathan and Martha Kent were alive on the TV show Lois & Clark and that seemed to work out pretty well.
    That show got cancelled after three seasons due to viewers losing interest, so it didn’t work out that well.
    Last edited by Vordan; 06-15-2019 at 09:56 PM.

  5. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Not as long as they’re going with the “Human first” characterization for Clark. Clark really has no personal connection whatsoever to Krypton and thus its loss fails to be really meaningful for him outside of “what could my life have been like?” This is especially true when his life on Earth is so great with both his adopted parents alive and well, and he’s married to Lois with Jon. There’s no meaningful internal conflicts for him at that point.

    That show got cancelled after three seasons due to viewers losing interest, so it didn’t work out that well.
    Clark has had meaningful internal conflicts since Jon was born.

  6. #36
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikelmcknight72 View Post
    SiegePerilous02: I'm not saying it made him dark. What I am saying is that the loss of his birth world is more than sufficient tragedy for a character like Superman. I also think you gain far more opportunities for character development & story with them alive than you do with them dead. Plus, their deaths are generally not hardwired into his origin.
    The loss of Krypton is a tragedy, but since he was an infant when it exploded, he's going to be more attached to his Earth parents and life and not have a clear recollection of the species he lost. That's more personal for Kara than him. And like Vordan says, it was even less a big deal in the post-Crisis canon when his mentality was being a human first and cold, sterile Russia-stand in Kryptn was viewed as being better off blown up.

    He has more nuanced hardships in the classic setup: he learns he is not only adopted, but not of our species as well, but has two loving adopted parents. His developing powers make him feel like an outcast to his peers, but he still has Pete, Lana and the Legion of Superheroes as his friends. His adopted parents die, but they die when he's a man and can take of himself thanks to what they taught him and he doesn't let his grief own him. If both his adopted parents are alive into adulthood and his powers don't create a sense of isolation and he's one of the most popular jocks in school, his life becomes a bit more ideal than it should be. I don't think it's a coincidence that these changes being put into place in the 80s started the "Naive Farm Boy" trend that the poor bastard can't seem to shake.

    What character development do the Kents typically get? Much like most old school characters, they seem pretty static.

  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vordan View Post
    Not as long as they’re going with the “Human first” characterization for Clark. Clark really has no personal connection whatsoever to Krypton and thus its loss fails to be really meaningful for him outside of “what could my life have been like?” This is especially true when his life on Earth is so great with both his adopted parents alive and well, and he’s married to Lois with Jon. There’s no meaningful internal conflicts for him at that point.
    How does his parents being dead necessarily give him 'meaningful internal conflict', as you put it? And how does their being alive take away from any 'meaningful internal conflict' he might have?

    If you're looking to add internal conflict to Superman, you can go with the fact that he's this God-like figure regarded as a savior by most of the world, and sometimes he feels crushed by the weight of that expectation. You can go with the fact that he feels like with his powers, he should be changing the world more, but at the same time, he doesn't want to become a tyrant (and in the process, he lets other tyrants continue to exist).

    The deaths of the Kents doesn't really teach him anything. The classic version of the origin had Clark promise Pa Kent on his death bed that he'd use his powers to help people - but he does that in versions where they're alive as well. Hell, in the versions where he's already Superboy, Clark's deathbed promise is just a promise to keep doing what he's already been doing. I know a lot of people are attached to that part in the Donner movie where he goes "All my powers, and I couldn't save him". But in the context of that movie, it still isn't a major turning point in the origin story - especially since in that version, its Jor-El's hologram who has the most influence in terms of shaping Clark into Superman.

    Hell, I'd argue that the only time Jonathan's death really gave Clark some internal conflict and/or inspired his transformation into Superman was his much-maligned death scene in Man of Steel!

  8. #38
    Extraordinary Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bat39 View Post
    How does his parents being dead necessarily give him 'meaningful internal conflict', as you put it? And how does their being alive take away from any 'meaningful internal conflict' he might have?

    If you're looking to add internal conflict to Superman, you can go with the fact that he's this God-like figure regarded as a savior by most of the world, and sometimes he feels crushed by the weight of that expectation. You can go with the fact that he feels like with his powers, he should be changing the world more, but at the same time, he doesn't want to become a tyrant (and in the process, he lets other tyrants continue to exist).

    The deaths of the Kents doesn't really teach him anything. The classic version of the origin had Clark promise Pa Kent on his death bed that he'd use his powers to help people - but he does that in versions where they're alive as well. Hell, in the versions where he's already Superboy, Clark's deathbed promise is just a promise to keep doing what he's already been doing. I know a lot of people are attached to that part in the Donner movie where he goes "All my powers, and I couldn't save him". But in the context of that movie, it still isn't a major turning point in the origin story - especially since in that version, its Jor-El's hologram who has the most influence in terms of shaping Clark into Superman.

    Hell, I'd argue that the only time Jonathan's death really gave Clark some internal conflict and/or inspired his transformation into Superman was his much-maligned death scene in Man of Steel!
    I don't know if "internal conflict" is really the thing we need the Kents dead for, but it does help give Clark a little more adversity for him to overcome in his path to becoming the world's greatest superhero. No, not all heroes need to be shaped by tragedy or difficulty to want to be heroes and we don't want to go overboard with that, but most heroes are not Superman, who has the perception of being too powerful, too perfect and not have much challenges, big or small. If the desire is to have this insanely powerful figure be inspirational, to be a heightened metaphor for overcoming insurmountable odds, you need to give him some downs to go along with the ups in his life that he overcame. An at times difficult (but by no means miserable) adolescence and dealing with the death of a parent/both parents are not crazy OTT tragedies for him to deal with. He learned the same lessons the rest of us do, just on an exaggerated scale.

    What do the Kents really offer while being alive beyond the occasional pleasant family scene? It all just seems like fluff.

  9. #39
    Astonishing Member Vordan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bat39 View Post
    How does his parents being dead necessarily give him 'meaningful internal conflict', as you put it? And how does their being alive take away from any 'meaningful internal conflict' he might have?

    If you're looking to add internal conflict to Superman, you can go with the fact that he's this God-like figure regarded as a savior by most of the world, and sometimes he feels crushed by the weight of that expectation. You can go with the fact that he feels like with his powers, he should be changing the world more, but at the same time, he doesn't want to become a tyrant (and in the process, he lets other tyrants continue to exist).

    The deaths of the Kents doesn't really teach him anything. The classic version of the origin had Clark promise Pa Kent on his death bed that he'd use his powers to help people - but he does that in versions where they're alive as well. Hell, in the versions where he's already Superboy, Clark's deathbed promise is just a promise to keep doing what he's already been doing. I know a lot of people are attached to that part in the Donner movie where he goes "All my powers, and I couldn't save him". But in the context of that movie, it still isn't a major turning point in the origin story - especially since in that version, its Jor-El's hologram who has the most influence in terms of shaping Clark into Superman.

    Hell, I'd argue that the only time Jonathan's death really gave Clark some internal conflict and/or inspired his transformation into Superman was his much-maligned death scene in Man of Steel!
    What the death of the Kents give him is the ability to say “I know what it’s like to suffer a loss, to feel helpless, to struggle with despair, and I know how to overcome all that in a positive way”. Bendis isn’t wrong when he says the Superman fan base doesn’t want Clark to suffer any adversity or hardship in his life. But if Clark doesn’t have at least one moment in his life where he loses really badly and suffers severe consequences for it, then he becomes what his critics always say he is: too perfect. Clark’s bit about Hope rings hollow if he’s never had to suffer loss and felt the urge to give in to despair. The perfect guy with the perfect life telling people “chin up sport it will all work out” just comes off as very condescending and out of touch with people.

  10. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Soubhagya View Post
    What are the chances that only Martha is alive?

    In the panel its said As Ma Kent says.

    A question to fans of New 52 action run by Morrison. Can that Superman, T-shirt wearing, social crusader work with Martha being alive? I think we can all agree that Pa Kent was stellar. He informed Superman's worldview. He had the deathbed speech. But Martha wasn't as memorable. What if she were alive? I would really like Morrison's origin to be the origin. But i love the Kents. Both of them being dead makes me sad. I really liked Martha in the recent films. Man of Steel film had the tragic death. As well as the warmth which Kents bring by being alive.It looks like i am powering the Doomsday/Superman at the end of that Action run. Thinking of ways to improve Superman.
    I agree that the Super-Moms tend to get shafted in the larger Super-Mythos. Martha basically struggles to get outside of being generic farm mom character, in the Donner movies you had Lara do some stuff but that was as a hologram A.I. and other than that she was largely left in Jor-El's shadow. IIRC the N52 tried to do some stuff with Lara in making her associated with the military but that was swept under the rug with the continuity reshuffling that reinstated the Post-Crisis Superman.

    Like I said it's my preference that both his biological parents and his adopted parents stay dead. But its not a deal break though but I don't suspect Jon and Martha will ever amount to anything other than farmhand stereotypes. Jor-El's back as a morally ambiguous character with a tense relationship with his son. I don't think Supes parents living into his adulthood actually has any positive benefits to the character it just helps reinforce the "feel good" rockwellian nature people associate with Superman in the modern era.
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  11. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikelmcknight72 View Post
    I truly hope so. Here's why:

    1. Clark has enough tragedy built-in to his origin. He's not a dark character, and it should stay that way. Same way I feel about Jay, Barry, Wally, & Bart. Legacy and a desire to good are all those characters need for motivation. Barry's mom's death and the incarceration of his father should be retconned ASAP.
    2. The occasional interactions with his parents were great, and the parts with them during the whole Death/Return arc were some of the most heartfelt.
    3. The relationships with the Lane side of the family have enough strife for Lois & Clark. Jor-El on top of that adds more. A functional, healthy side to the family is good, particularly for Jon.
    4. Jon with his grandparents would be great fun.
    5. It gives Connor a badly needed home & family. He's another member of the Superman family that has plenty of tragedy built-in to his origin.

    So my vote would be bring them back and KEEP them alive and relatively well.

    You know I remember seeing an interview where Jon Byrne used a similar line of reasoning about why he brought the Kent's back. It went something like "Well I didn't think he should be sad and depressed like Batman" but Superman already wasn't sad and depressed like Batman when he first got his hands on him. He'll Batman in the 70's wasn't nearly as depressed as he would end up being once he was under the thumb of future writers. So Byrne as far as I can tell was trying to fix and problem that didn't really exist with the bringing back the Kents.

    But Byrne is a modern day writer and I think from his perspective the idea that Superman could maintain a strong state of mind and resilient personality in the face of such tragedy was absurd. From the perspective of the modern day writer I think the potential pathways in human development are fairly simple thus you get the modern day formula of tragic origin story equals a sad, angry, depressed individual and explains why the modern villain always has the same uniform backstory explaining their villainy through some quagmire of tragic events. Like wise if the modern writer believes sad backstories fuel negative traits in characters then good wholesome backstories must fuel good characteristics in character and since Superman is a character with a bend toward the optimistic side of things they thought it only made sense to scrub his back story of anything that made his backstory less than ideal including anything fantastical or whimsical. Clark Kent "Superboy" replaced with Clark Kent "Farmboy".

    My general viewpoint of all this is that in the Pre-Crisis days Superman was the model for heroism and all heroes were thus built in his image. Pre-Crisis Superman had dead parents and dead adoptive parents and the theory as to why varies , some believe it was just to help with the general heroes journey feeling, maybe it was because of the inspirations for Superman, or possibly it was because the writer Jerry Siegel's dad had been murdered. Whatever the exact reasoning may have been I never saw the concept of death presented the way it is these days. Yes Krypton blows up but from it's destruction and Jor-El's quick thinking we get young Kal-El's journey to Earth which produces the bedrock for the greatest champion since the Greek Heroes. Likewise in Superman #1 when we're given a more fleshed out backstory for Superman that went deeper into the passing of the Kents it showed that Clark while saddened by his second parents death wasn't depressed or darkened by it. Rather the death of the Kents hardened his resolve to become a Superhero and fight injustice. In the Pre-Crisis era I think death was simply a part of life and it wasn't necessarily something you had to fear obsessively.

    Post-Crisis imo was more defined by Batman; especially as time dragged on and Batman's popularity continues to skyrocket. Batman defined what the model of strength, capability, and heroism. Batman styles logic dictates that death is the single most destructive event that can occur and has only bad things in store for anyone. Its also more human perspective on something like death thats ultimately a giant mystery other than our bodies breaking down into nothing.
    Last edited by The World; 06-16-2019 at 10:44 AM.
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  12. #42
    Mighty Member Adekis's Avatar
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    Superman got along just fine for nearly fifty years with his parents dead. I don't see what's so necessary about having them around. It doesn't differentiate him from Batman, like he's already really different from Batman. But I'm sure after three pages of long posts there's little I can say that hasn't been said, so I'm just going to throw my hat in the ring and vote for "keep 'em dead."
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  13. #43
    Astonishing Member superduperman's Avatar
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    I want his folks alive just because I want him to have as many allies as possible. I don't see the problem with this. No, he doesn't have to go running home every time he has a problem. But it would be nice to have as many people in his corner as possible.
    Now listen to me, Clark! This great strength of yours--you've got to hide it from people or they'll be scared of you!

  14. #44
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    Ideally I'd like Pa dead and Ma alive but I do love them being alive during his Superman career. Some of Funeral for a Friend best stuff was Ma and Pa IMO.

  15. #45
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    The Kents are to Superman what Alfred is to Batman. They are his link to humanity. It's stupid to kill them off. When Superman was most successful was during Dan Jurgens early 90s Death of Superman period, the Kents are alive. And for those who say he needs tragedy, hello....HIS WHOLE PLANET BLEW UP lol, that's plenty of tragedy.

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