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  1. #31
    I'm at least a C-Lister! exile001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by manwhohaseverything View Post
    It's not that they were dead or alive in the original origin.It was that they were insiginficant..Weren't basic ingredients to make a superman.It was'nt suger,spice,earth parents ,skyparents and everything nice ...boom you got perfect(whatever that is) little boy.
    The origin was kid fell from sky.Kid is super in an orphanage.gets parents(named only).Boom! smashes car and scares jackasses/bullies..It was like a minute detail in the original story.It was really the most uninteresting part of superman.The origin i mean.
    I agree. That's understandable for a time when comic stories were 10 pages and intended to be disposable one-offs. It's not important to that origin which was only there to give context to the setting and powers.

    But as comics have increasingly been about long form storytelling since the 60's (at least) they have more room to explore a supporting cast which is where I'm coming from. Comics now need more characters to remain interesting, flesh out a world and give main characters more people to interact with and show different sides to add depth. They see Clark, the boy they raised, and offer the reader that unique perspective on him as a character.

    They don't need to be in every story. They could not appear for a year at a time (and have), but with them alive that option is still open to the writer should they choose to use it.
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  2. #32
    The Man Who Cannot Die manwhohaseverything's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exile001 View Post
    I agree. That's understandable for a time when comic stories were 10 pages and intended to be disposable one-offs. It's not important to that origin which was only there to give context to the setting and powers.

    But as comics have increasingly been about long form storytelling since the 60's (at least) they have more room to explore a supporting cast which is where I'm coming from. Comics now need more characters to remain interesting, flesh out a world and give main characters more people to interact with and show different sides to add depth. They see Clark, the boy they raised, and offer the reader that unique perspective on him as a character.

    They don't need to be in every story. They could not appear for a year at a time (and have), but with them alive that option is still open to the writer should they choose to use it.
    That's another thing.Superman was built to be newspaper strip.Also,that's not true either.Superman had his fare share of support characters.But,the parents were really pointless.I mean,he has family moments with them,talk about his feelings and whatnot.There wasn't much need for that.It didn't really matter to the stories told..You build a world according to the requirement of stories being told .You don't through useless information out.If you are willing to do that,it needs to be interesting.Pa and ma aren't interesting characters themselves for me.In fact,the emphasis on them and sky parents have always been boring for me..Either it goes human(byrne) or it goes jesus(donner).
    Last edited by manwhohaseverything; 06-18-2021 at 03:11 AM.
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  3. #33
    I'm at least a C-Lister! exile001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by manwhohaseverything View Post
    That's another thing.Superman was built to be newspaper strip.Also,that's not true either.Superman had his fare share of support characters.But,the parents were really pointless.I mean,he has family moments with them,talk about his feelings and whatnot.There wasn't much need for that.It didn't really matter to the stories told..You build a world according to the requirement of stories being told .You don't through useless information out.If you are willing to do that,it needs to be interesting.Pa and ma aren't interesting characters themselves for me.In fact,the emphasis on them and sky parents have always been boring for me..Either it goes human(byrne) or it goes jesus(donner).
    Cool, you don't find them interesting and so think they're unimportant. I disagree.

    However, I completely agree that Jor-El and Lara should just be a plot device to get Kal-El to Earth.

    I feel that making Jor-El a revolutionary hero in his own right outside of just saving his son goes down the path that heroism is hereditary,which I find contrived and takes away from Superman's own agency. See also: Thomas Wayne as the 'first' Batman, Peter Parker's parents as super-spies, etc.
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  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by exile001 View Post
    Cool, you don't find them interesting and so think they're unimportant. I disagree.

    However, I completely agree that Jor-El and Lara should just be a plot device to get Kal-El to Earth.

    I feel that making Jor-El a revolutionary hero in his own right outside of just saving his son goes down the path that heroism is hereditary,which I find contrived and takes away from Superman's own agency. See also: Thomas Wayne as the 'first' Batman, Peter Parker's parents as super-spies, etc.
    It's not that they're unimportant, it's that when Superman grows up it's time for him to stand on his own two feet. No running to Jor-El and Lara and no running to the Kents. He has to rely on his own wits now. Which for 50 years was a thing and then the Post-Crisis writers seemed shaken up by Superman being that independent for some reason or another.
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  5. #35
    I'm at least a C-Lister! exile001's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The World View Post
    It's not that they're unimportant, it's that when Superman grows up it's time for him to stand on his own two feet. No running to Jor-El and Lara and no running to the Kents. He has to rely on his own wits now. Which for 50 years was a thing and then the Post-Crisis writers seemed shaken up by Superman being that independent for some reason or another.
    I can see that, especially reinforced with the Superboy title having Ma and Pa as central characters so it narratively flows to have the grown up Superman move on from them.

    I still don't get the idea that having a relationship with them makes him dependent (I've never felt he went running to mummy & daddy), but that may tie into the entire change in Superman's character post-Crisis where he is far less dynamic as a whole.
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  6. #36
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TheBatman View Post
    Preferring Post Crisis concepts and/or incarnations doesn't make your reasoning for doing so less obstinate and more creative.
    Yes, post-Crisis ideas tend to be put on pedestals as much as pre-Crisis ones can be and just because they came later doesn't meant hey are inherently better or beyond reproach. The entire post-crisis era came about because it demolished the previous one, so there's no rule in place that it should be protected above all else.

    Quote Originally Posted by exile001 View Post
    Why would writers and the universe want less characters to play with? Having them dead makes Superman's world/cast smaller but adds nothing to replace it.
    They've been around so long to be played with, and not much of interest has happened with them in all this time. Their alive status is also a holdover from an era that cut out his entire time as Superboy, severed the Legion connection, exiled Krypto and Kara (resulting in a lot of convoluted Supergirl stuff), ditched a lot of other older characters and villains, etc. so the argument that they made the cast bigger and provided more to play with doesn't really hold up, IMO. Especially with how decompressed things are these days with less page space to cover characters, some characters are going to struggle for panel time even without having to contend with them.

    If Superman is lonely without his adoptive parents...well, he's meant to be lonely, at least before he finally opens up to Lois. He doesn't have to be miserable about it, but not letting his emotional barriers down around people he should trust is one of his more interesting quirks/flaws that doesn't make as much sense if he has his parents around to tell him to cut it out. He had a good relationship with his adoptive parents with no baggage, that's why he isn't wallowing in tragedy over their deaths. Them being alive doesn't had anything of interest to him and actually detracts from his flaws.

  7. #37
    Ultimate Member Vordan's Avatar
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    People want the Kents around because that’s what they grew up with in Post Crisis, but story wise there’s very little they offer that isn’t just endless rehashes of “Pa and Ma tell Clark to do the right thing and believe in himself”. They should be dead frankly, I’d argue they can still serve the same inspirational role in flashbacks if need be. Their best use recently was when Snyder had Clark flash back to his dad during “The Sixth Dimension” arc of his JL run. Still angry at Johns for bringing them back and then bailing, yet another shake up to Superman he did.
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  8. #38
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    I guess if we have issues with how Siegel and Shuster constructed Superman then we'll just have to wait until we pass on to the other side and sit down with them on a cloud and talk it over. Short of that I don't see any answer forthcoming unless someone knows a good medium. Of course, if there is no other side, then I guess we'll never get any answers and we'll just have to live with what was their own creation and not ours.
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  9. #39
    Fantastic Member The Cheat's Avatar
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    There's plenty of good arguments either way. I think, like most things, it usually comes down to personal bias based on what was status quo in your formative years. For me, they were alive in Lois & Clark, so them being dead feels like a weird change to me.

  10. #40
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by exile001 View Post
    Why would writers and the universe want less characters to play with? Having them dead makes Superman's world/cast smaller but adds nothing to replace it.

    Frankly, I like Superman having a healthy and positive relationship with his parents. It's wholesome.

    I've heard all sorts of arguments from the purist 'they were dead in original canon' to the narrative 'he needs to learn tragedy' (his whole planet and race are dead. Well, except when they're not) to the outright deranged of 'Superman can't be a functioning adult if his parents are alive.'

    No argument I've seen has ever convinced me that they are better off dead and the New 52 era reinforced this for me as Superman's world felt so small and often miserable/lonely.
    Thing is, they still can be utilized. Them being dead in the present day does not preclude their usage at all. The vast Pre-Crisis and and even the short New 52 are prime examples of that; we still saw a lot of them through other means. So its not really having less characters to play with at all. And I disagree their loss alone makes Superman's world feel small and miserable. It wasn't small at all in the New 52, and the loneliness angle was a creative choice that was not forced to be utilized just based on the idea his parents are deceased. And even then lonely and miserable are not the same things. He was the former often in New 52 era. He was never the latter.

    And he still has a wholesome relationship with his parents in continuities where they're gone. Both when they were around as a child, and in his heart in the present as an adult. Its still wholesome; them not being there in the flesh does not change that. Hell that's probably the main reason I prefer Clark on his own in the present, that the touchstones with his parents in spirit tend to be so much more powerful than anything ever done with them in present day post-Crisis takes when they're actually alive.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 06-18-2021 at 10:52 AM.
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  11. #41
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    I like having them around. The question often is "What do they offer?". And really it's basically just two people who love him, which isn't such a bad thing.

  12. #42
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    Just because your parents die, that doesn't stop them from being involved in your life. They're with you always. That kind of love never dies.

    For me, the biggest reason not to have the Kents alive is that it's just too tempting for writers to kill one of them off, for the sake of fake drama. I hate that feeling--knowing that any moment they are going to kill off one of them. Out of all the live screen versions, how many times have both been able to make it? LOIS & CLARK seems like the only one--so maybe it's a good thing that only went four seasons--because then I wasn't traumatized by another parent death scene.

    At least if the deaths are in the past--the band-aid is ripped off right at the beginning--and I'm not living in fear of when they're going to get killed off.
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  13. #43
    (formerly "Superman") JAK's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AdamFTF View Post
    I like having them around. The question often is "What do they offer?". And really it's basically just two people who love him, which isn't such a bad thing.
    Yeah, that's my thinking. The "not much has been done with them" argument is an odd one to me. Pa literally brought Clark back from the brink of full death by saving his essence/spirit. There's a good number of things they've done. But they've been more background-y things. And I'd argue that's a good thing - having characters that fill that role instead of having to have a spotlight is a nice change.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Kelly View Post
    Just because your parents die, that doesn't stop them from being involved in your life. They're with you always. That kind of love never dies.

    For me, the biggest reason not to have the Kents alive is that it's just too tempting for writers to kill one of them off, for the sake of fake drama. I hate that feeling--knowing that any moment they are going to kill off one of them. Out of all the live screen versions, how many times have both been able to make it? LOIS & CLARK seems like the only one--so maybe it's a good thing that only went four seasons--because then I wasn't traumatized by another parent death scene.

    At least if the deaths are in the past--the band-aid is ripped off right at the beginning--and I'm not living in fear of when they're going to get killed off.
    True, but that's true of any secondary character. And since them being alive seems to stick, I wouldn't worry as much about them dying, as they'll very likely be brought back again. But I can absolutely understand where you're coming from on that.
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  14. #44
    Fellow Traveler Venceremos's Avatar
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    JAK gets it.

  15. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by JAK View Post
    True, but that's true of any secondary character. And since them being alive seems to stick, I wouldn't worry as much about them dying, as they'll very likely be brought back again. But I can absolutely understand where you're coming from on that.
    It's true especially for parents on T.V. shows. I like John Wesley Shipp, because he's the Flash. So I watch DAWSON'S CREEK because he plays the dad there--only to see his character killed off a few seasons in. Stopped watching the show. Then J.W.S. is playing the dad on the new FLASH--and he dies again!
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