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The Man from Krypton: A Closer Look at Superman Paperback – Apr 10 2006
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From School Library Journal
Adult/High School–These 20 essays examine the Man of Steel from various perspectives, including his relationships with women and with Batman, the actors who have portrayed him, and what he stands for. The entries are articulate, thought-provoking, and often funny. Lawrence Watt-Evans points out that Superman's suit is made from his baby blanket–the ultimate security object. Adam-Troy Castro explains Six Things That Plain Don't Make Any Sense about Superman. Other contributors take a more scholarly approach, examining Superman's connections to Nietzsche or to Gilgamesh. Some give attention to his alter ego, Clark Kent. Most of the material is recent, except for Larry Niven's classic Man of Steel, Woman of Kleenex. This collection is well-rounded, well-chosen, and interesting. Any fan of Superman–or anyone with an interest in popular culture–will find it fascinating.–Susan Salpini, formerly at TASIS–The American School in England
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
I wish I could give this book five stars, some of the selections are sensational. Others kind of go against everything I personally believe about The Man of Steel. In some cases I can't believe the authors really read the comics or saw the films and TV shows. This is just my perception. I won't cite examples one way or another as this is a matter of personal opinion.
Over all I love the book and especially enjoyed reading plotlines and quotes from various comic books that took me back to when I first read them. You are bound to forget a great deal in 65 years and in that context this was a trip down memory lane. However, you can over analyse and I am reminded of college English teachers who destroyed more than one person's interest in reading by being picky over every little line in a story.
Most of the writers were careful in their analysis, using logic and good sense while showing a love for the Superman legend. Others over killed by trying to intellectualize everything said or done by Superman, Clark Kent, Lois and others no matter how trite. My favorite current reading about Superman is Steve Skelton's, "The Gospel According To The World's Greatest Super Hero". That I have read twice since receiving it a month ago.
I am glad that after the documentation section at the end of each article there is mention of other works by the authors that the reader may want to check out. Some I will.
Essays include everything from examinations of all the actors who have portrayed Superman as actors and voice actors. There is an examination of closed communities and how those might relate in to Smallville and the show Smallville. There is an essay by Larry Niven about the impossibility of Superman and Lois Lane ever being very intimate. There is an essay wondering why Superman never just stopped Hitler, and giving an excellent explanation of why.
The book was written while Smallville was still on the air. Lois and Clark wasn't too distant. Brandon Routh was about to play him on the big screen (and we all know how that turned out).
It's interesting viewing a long-lived character like this over the lens of time. Superman has changed because he's had to to stay relevant. In the current incarnation of the Man of Steel, he is a dark, brooding character. Some of the essays feel a bit dated and I'd love to see a revised version that includes something about the Henry Cavill version of Superman.
I received a review copy of this ebook from BenBella Books, Smart Pop, and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review this ebook.
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