Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Stronger Together

Recently, I’ve gotten into conversations with a few different people on the topic of Batman versus Superman. The Dark Knight Rises offers a teaser to Man of Steel, so the conversation is fairly inevitable.

Who is the better character? Let the debate begin! 

I’ve heard great arguments for both sides, but, as for myself, I tend to be less interested in which one is better and more into how awesome they are together.

There’s a reason that the two teamed up in a number of comics. They may come at crime fighting from two very different angles, but together they form a complete package. This is certainly not to say that they can’t exist on their own, but they send a stronger message when side by side.  

Much of their differing attitudes seem to be derived from their respective childhoods.

Both men are very influenced by their parents. The Waynes are murdered in front of their son’s eyes. The Kents, on the other hand, do die in certain continuities (though not generally as a result of violence), but are better known for the values which they instilled in their son than for the ways their lives ended.

One man’s course starts with his parents’ deaths, the other is inspired by his parents’ lives.

Batman embraces the shadows. He wants to strike fear in the hearts of those who strike fear in the hearts of others. Superman is a beacon of light. He inspires people to be the best versions of themselves.

Now, there’s some crossover here. Batman is certainly inspiring and if I was a bad guy, I’d probably be pretty nervous around the Man of Steel. But both heroes know how to play to their strengths.

There's a reason that so many people who I hear having the Batman vs. Superman argument relate more to Batman. Batman is the fight to overcome our past traumas without the aid of any superpowers, just through force of will and whatever resources you have handy to you (of course, Bruce Wayne's resources are admittedly impressive). But why do we struggle so to overcome these villains? Because we're trying to reach a better future. Superman is the embodiment of that hope. The promise that after our struggle we will emerge into the light and find ourselves endowed with strengths that we never believed possible.

Alone the heroes are important in their own right, but together, they’re basically the embodiment of every reason that prompts us to continue attending superhero movies, no matter how many times they’re revamped.

No comments:

Post a Comment