Friday, April 07, 2006

Super Fears

I just got the new issue of Entertainment Weekly. The cover features Brandon Routh as Superman, and I gotta tell you, the image has me afraid. Very afraid.

It's not that he doesn't look the part. He's fine. I have no idea of his acting ability so obviously that judgment will wait until the movie comes out.

I saw some of the first images from the movie, and I thought, "Ugh. Did they have to give him the CHEESIEST COSTUME EVER???!!!" I mean, he looks WORSE than the 1970s Superman, and that's not what updating a classic is supposed to be about.

This cover does nothing to dispel that. It heightens my fears. My first thought on seeing it was "Christopher Reeve." That in itself isn't bad, of course. Nothing against Christopher Reeve. But evoking images of Superman IV? That's bad.

The plastic-looking curl on his forehead is bad. I only occasionally read the comics when I was a kid, but I'm pretty sure Superman didn't whip out the hair gel and curling iron when he was in the phone booth.

The rosy cheeks and glossy lips are bad. There's a reason X-Men the movie skipped the spandex. Some things don't translate well from page to screen. I'm hoping this is simply cover artist overenthusiasm and Superman won't need an hour in hair and makeup before each urgent rescue.

Put it all together, and I'm ready for the worst. In my adulthood, we've had two Clark Kents who are competent, interesting men, not stumbling, bumbling fools. I flipped to the inside article, and the image of Routh as Clark Kent doesn't ease my concerns any.

Add to that Kevin Spacey's lack of menace (or the right kind of menace, anyway) and Kate Bosworth's overwhelming sweetness, and this is not the movie I'm holding my breath for this summer.

I've been surprised before. Maybe I will be again. I am not giving up hope.


Ellen Fisher said...

This is one reason I like "Smallville"... no tights. I think Superman's a great guy, but I just can't take a man seriously when he wears day-glo spandex. That costume needs some serious updating!

Natalie Damschroder said...

Yes, definitely!

Looks great in a comic book. On a real guy...not so much.

I read more about the story and it sounds like it will be okay. The only problem is, it says time has passed and Superman was away for a while...yet the actor looks 15 years younger than the previous Superman, and the actress playing Lois is in her early 20s, so I don't know how they'll get away with that.