No Kryptonite in Man of Steel

Zack Snyder‘s upcoming Superman reboot has, it seems, taken a small but important step towards being the best in the canon since Superman II. While I’ve got a soft spot for Bryan Singer‘s 2006 installment, Superman Returns, it, like several other entries before it, stumbled right out of the gate in failing to present Superman with a credible threat, namely one who could defeat him without the aid of a hunk of meteor rock.

Personally, kryptonite has always seemed like a lazy way of introducing jeopardy by bringing Superman down to human level instead of providing an antagonist who can rise to his. Superman II worked because it provided someone who could challenge Superman physically; that someone being, of course, General “Kneel Before” Zod, set to return in Znyder’s reboot in the form of Michael Shannon (taking over the role from the iconic Terence Stamp).

The Entertainment Weekly article, which apparently contains interviews with, amongst others, both Snyder and the new Superman himself, Henry Cavil, promises that “Man of Steel presents the frustrated Superman, the angry Superman, the lost Superman” – one who, as Snyder has said, “Although he is not susceptible to the [physical] frailties of mankind… is definitely susceptible to the emotional frailties.” Now doesn’t that sound a lot more dramatic than some radioactive space debris?

Man of Steel is due out on June 14th. Till then we’ll keep watching the skies…

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Robert Wallis

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