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  1. #1
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    Default So I was told that the Kent's absolutely needed to be in Superman's adult life.

    Something about too much tragedy for the Kent's to not be around when Clark is 20-30 years old. So what exactly have the Kent's even been doing since the second resurrections.
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  2. #2
    Extraordinary Member sifighter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by The World View Post
    Something about too much tragedy for the Kent's to not be around when Clark is 20-30 years old. So what exactly have the Kent's even been doing since the second resurrections.
    Back at their farm, hoping to hang out with their grandson Jon, helping raise Conner before he got snatched by the suicide squad (if that really is Conner). Though if I was them after the identity reveal I'd write a book called "Raising Superman" no way is that not a top selling biography.
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  3. #3
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    So something completely unhelpful to Kon-El's character and nothing?
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  4. #4
    Extraordinary Member superduperman's Avatar
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    (insert gif of Abe Simpsons turning around and going out door)
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  5. #5
    Astonishing Member JackDaw's Avatar
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    Too much tragedy?

    I always smile a bit at the almost universal conceit that Batman is a tragic character but Superman isnít.

    After all...his entire planet was destroyed as part of his origin!

    I can easily accept that Superman would be a happy go lucky guy UP to the point when he realised heíd come from a doomed world.

    After that he really should have a fundamentally different character/personality.

    Iíll freely admit Iíve only read a small proportion of available mainstream Superman material (but still read hundreds of his comics!), but really none of the stuff Iíve read really shows impact of realising Kryptons fate sensibly.

  6. #6
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    I wouldn't say they HAVE to be around, but most of the time it's better to have more characters to play with than less characters and Superman could use more human and less Kryptonian characters in general.

    The PAD Supergirl series had something I really wish we'd seen more of, the Kents coaching new parents of superheroes and helping them adapt to it. It was a great and logical way to use them.

  7. #7
    Ultimate Member Sacred Knight's Avatar
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    They absolutely don't need to be around in Superman's present day.

    And its not dark when they're gone. That's why the argument of "Superman shouldn't have so much tragedy" falls flat. Its not played as dark, never has been. A sad time, a sad memory? Of course. And in a lot of stories it serves as a big teachable moment about what he can and can't achieve. But he honors their memory and is still the same bright, optimistic man they raised him to be. It doesn't play the same role that Batman's loss of his parents or even Peter Parker's loss of Uncle Ben ever has.
    Last edited by Sacred Knight; 06-17-2021 at 09:06 AM.
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  8. #8
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    I see it as compensation for not having a Superboy (the Adventures of Superman when he was a Boy) comic. If Smallville is a trademark part of the Superman world (trademark = money), how do you keep that relevant if there are no Superboy comics? The compromise was to have the Kents alive and on the farm, so adult Clark could visit them. They might have done an ongoing flashback series (like what became the SMALLVILLE T.V. show), but they couldn't be bothered.

    However, the Kents aren't such indelible characters that they needed to be around--not like Lois Lane. The proof of this is how many different versions of the Kents exist. In the early days, they weren't well-defined. By the 1950s, they became a bespectacled white haired couple. But in 1968, they were made much younger, with brown hair and no glasses. In the 1970s, they gradually aged again (glasses, but no white hair). When Byrne recreated them they were two hobbits from a bucolic past. It didn't take long for other artists to throw out the Byrne design and give their own varying takes on the Kents. On screen, they've been all over the map in looks and age. They're really just an outline that everyone chooses to fill in however they please.
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  9. #9
    Fantastic Member magha_regulus's Avatar
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    I really don't like having the Kents around while he's Superman. Superman suffered more loss than almost any other hero. I feel like he's more psychologically sound with better coping mechanisms than Batman. This is part of the reason why Superman turning evil or becoming a recluse if Lois gets murdered never rings true to me.

  10. #10
    Astonishing Member Blue22's Avatar
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    They don't have to be around and they don't have to be anything more than an occasional part of the supporting cast. I just like having them around because I'm sick of the "heroes can't have parents who are just normal people" trope. So even if they don't contribute much anymore, I gladly accept the Kents being alive.

  11. #11
    Ultimate Member SiegePerilous02's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    They absolutely don't need to be around in Superman's present day.

    And its not dark when they're gone. That's why the argument of "Superman shouldn't have so much tragedy" falls flat. Its not played as dark, never has been. A sad time, a sad memory? Of course. And in a lot of stories it serves as a big teachable moment about what he can and can't achieve. But he honors their memory and is still the same bright, optimistic man they raised him to be. It doesn't play the same role that Batman's loss of his parents or even Peter Parker's loss of Uncle Ben ever has.
    Agreed. Death and grief are parts of life, and they cannot be avoided. It doesn't have to turn your life into a relentless tragedy though, and not everyone reacts to grief in the same way. The Kents die while Clark is on the cusp of adulthood, he grieves and makes peace with it, and just carries their memories with him as an adult. Their influence is still felt while allowing him to stand on his own. That makes him a stronger character than if he can fly home to them at any time. It's not that heroes with living parents are weaker (before anyone makes that argument- ex: we have Hippolyta), but Superman specifically was not designed that way and the Kents don't do anything terribly interesting by hanging around anyway. The idea that Superman's life will have too much tragedy if his adoptive parents die (from old age or an illness) and be like Batman is an incredibly immature way to look at things, IMO.

    Hell, Batman's parents were fucking gunned down in an alley and the pre-Crisis guy still managed to be comparatively way more well adjusted than his modern self. So I never see why the dead Kents should make Clark miserable.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunofdarkchild View Post
    I wouldn't say they HAVE to be around, but most of the time it's better to have more characters to play with than less characters and Superman could use more human and less Kryptonian characters in general.

    The PAD Supergirl series had something I really wish we'd seen more of, the Kents coaching new parents of superheroes and helping them adapt to it. It was a great and logical way to use them.
    This is generally my view. I’ve never seen much value in having them dead in the present anyway, and it’s fun to be able to have them hang around and do things sometimes.

    It starts to feel like pointless Pre-Crisis revanchism anyways - it’s not even a change that radically alters the character of Superman one way or another when people support them being dead, since even arguably the most dramatically specific use of it, Pa Kent’s death in the original movie supposedly showing Clark’ limits, was eventually contradicted within the same movie.

    I feel it’s a bit like the insistence on Barry as “the” Flash - people expressing the same type of favoritism I and others have for a different status quo, but doing so with a more obstinate and less creative reasoning.
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  13. #13
    Astonishing Member DochaDocha's Avatar
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    I tend to think that a lot of us who prefer dead Kents probably wouldn't feel that way if there weren't a push to find ways to make Superman less sure of himself. Of course, that's not necessarily a Kent problem. Jonathan kicked the bucket in Man of Steel but that didn't stop Cavill's Superman from second-guessing himself.

    That said, when Superman comes across a situation that involves a lot of tough decision-making, I think it's pretty cool when he tries to figure it out on his own. I dunno, it just feels like there's a reluctance to portray a Superman who's willing to make the hard choices on his own, and when he does it's some BS version like Injustice.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by sunofdarkchild View Post
    I wouldn't say they HAVE to be around, but most of the time it's better to have more characters to play with than less characters and Superman could use more human and less Kryptonian characters in general.

    The PAD Supergirl series had something I really wish we'd seen more of, the Kents coaching new parents of superheroes and helping them adapt to it. It was a great and logical way to use them.
    But the Post-Crisis writers disposed of the Legions connection to Superman which had many characters in it. If they really believed in more character = better they would have just left Superboy alone, where the Kent's having a visible presence made sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by Sacred Knight View Post
    They absolutely don't need to be around in Superman's present day.

    And its not dark when they're gone. That's why the argument of "Superman shouldn't have so much tragedy" falls flat. Its not played as dark, never has been. A sad time, a sad memory? Of course. And in a lot of stories it serves as a big teachable moment about what he can and can't achieve. But he honors their memory and is still the same bright, optimistic man they raised him to be. It doesn't play the same role that Batman's loss of his parents or even Peter Parker's loss of Uncle Ben ever has.
    Quote Originally Posted by SiegePerilous02 View Post
    Agreed. Death and grief are parts of life, and they cannot be avoided. It doesn't have to turn your life into a relentless tragedy though, and not everyone reacts to grief in the same way. The Kents die while Clark is on the cusp of adulthood, he grieves and makes peace with it, and just carries their memories with him as an adult. Their influence is still felt while allowing him to stand on his own. That makes him a stronger character than if he can fly home to them at any time. It's not that heroes with living parents are weaker (before anyone makes that argument- ex: we have Hippolyta), but Superman specifically was not designed that way and the Kents don't do anything terribly interesting by hanging around anyway. The idea that Superman's life will have too much tragedy if his adoptive parents die (from old age or an illness) and be like Batman is an incredibly immature way to look at things, IMO.

    Hell, Batman's parents were fucking gunned down in an alley and the pre-Crisis guy still managed to be comparatively way more well adjusted than his modern self. So I never see why the dead Kents should make Clark miserable.
    But yeah I think is also a big part of it. Maybe even the main functional part of" the Kents must live" stuff. Functionally Batman is the most inspirational figure of modern DC and he has spun a tale of how pain and misery makes you strong. Superman having lost two sets of parents relatively early in life but learning to cope contradicted what Batman was preaching. Regardless of how childish it is the pain and misery stuff is a very satisfying fantasy for some who I guess want to believe something happening to someone else you're close to can somehow make you into a stronger person. The Post-Crisis Superman was forged to be Batman's diametric opposite but also to sort of support Bruce's silly infantile gospels when it came to what made someone strong and what made someone weak. The Pre-Crisis Superman kind of said all of that is BS and I think that's part of why people are desperate for him to stay gone, he kind of rains on people's self pitying parades.

    There's no space for real strength when everyone wants to sit down and talk about how hard they've had it and how "strong" that makes them.
    Last edited by The World; 06-17-2021 at 01:26 PM.
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  15. #15
    Invincible Member MajorHoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by magha_regulus View Post
    I really don't like having the Kents around while he's Superman. Superman suffered more loss than almost any other hero. I feel like he's more psychologically sound with better coping mechanisms than Batman. This is part of the reason why Superman turning evil or becoming a recluse if Lois gets murdered never rings true to me.
    I grew up in the pre-CoIE days. When I first started regularly following DC comics in the early 1970s, his parents were dead.
    I thought it was a bad idea then to still have his parents alive after CoIE, but as I started reading those stories, it seemed that having Ma and Pa Kent still alive was a good thing. It helped ground Superman's character, and a visit back to the old home in Smallville helped to mentally recharge him. He didn't need to isolate himself in the Fortress of Solitude; just being on the farm and eating Ma's home cooking helped him to refocus after all the things he saw and did as Superman.

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