I finally know what date I’ll be seeing “Man of Steel,” which is a relief because the anticipation on this one has been killing me: Every new thing seen/heard from it has been alternately thrilling/terrifying: So much that looks like they “got it,” so much that sounds like they might not have and nothing to change my concerns that while Zack Snyder is the perfect person to direct a Superman movie… the Nolan Bros. don’t belong anywhere near the character.
That sense continues with the new trailer, which is more-or-less the “introducing your villains” one. The look and feel of everything is awesome, and Michael Shannon’s Zod seems to be as magnificient as I’d hoped… but I’m also getting a bad feeling:
“Clark becomes Superman to fight off an alien invasion by his own people” is a serviceable enough new spin on the mythos, fine,” but how many Kryptonians is Zod dragging around with him, exactly? The “one of my citizens” line and the “background details” of the other trailers make it seem an awful lot like they’ve switched Krypton from “destroyed” to “conquered” in this version – a pointless, asinine revision that J.J. Abrams’ abominable “Flyby” script also pulled – though he could also be “ruling” a roaming crew of super-nomads, which has interesting potential (it also occurs to me that we don’t even know HOW Kryptonians having super-powers “works” in this version.)
But it’s worrisome that they either seem to be junking (or have simply “missed”) the quintessential “immigrant story” that’s always been underlying this character. Kal-El being one of very few survivors of an advanced, proud culture that’s been destroyed and (literally) scattered to the stars is what made Superman not just The American Immigrant generally but The Jewish-American Immigrant specifically. Not necessarily saying new ideas are bad, but this is big stuff to be doing away with and I remain thoroughly unconvinced that the people behind the writing of this have the understanding/respect for the things their tinkering with to be trusted with a full-scale overhaul.