Live-Action Superman Mythology B%4ls$2!

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Mr Silver, Jul 20, 2012.

  1. Mr Silver

    Mr Silver Commodore Newbie

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    I am a massive fan of the Superman franchise and perhaps surprisingly, a lot of my fandom leans towards the live action adaptions rather than the comics.

    However, I am familiar with the Superman comics and the established lore throughout the years. Now having recently picked up Lois and Clark on DVD (which I last saw when I was a kid and is still surprisingly good!) I'm reminded of the constant inconsistencies that arise whenever a comic book is made into a live action adaptation. The fact that Krypton is a blue planet with red continents is an example from the show - no big deal, but it goes against any previous incarnation of Krypton in the comics or indeed, the movies.

    This then got me thinking about any MASSIVE plot holes throughout the Superman franchise and I arrived at a conclusion - Kryptonite.

    Now you'll have to forgive my somewhat elementary knowledge of astrophysics, but I'm under the impression that celestial debris such as asteroids and meteors, etc cannot exceed the speed of light - therefore it is extremely unlikely that they would make it to our galaxy from Krypton's by the time Clark Kent has become Superman (or earlier depending on series or adaptation)

    Now it's a given that Kal El's spaceship was designed to reach massive speeds far beyond the speed of light in order for Kal El to make it to Earth whilst he was still around toddler age and in most of the adaptations of Superman - Kal El leaves Krypton well before it explodes, so there is no chance of his spaceship dragging the Kryptonite within it's field (subspace Trek crossover? ;) ) This then brings us to Smallville...

    A work of brilliance if I may say so myself, but mainly because Smallville takes place in contemporary times where orbital satellites, probes and galactic observation technology is in abundance. So we are given the meteor shower which was probably pieces of Krypton debris dragged by Kal El's ship (within the > c field) to Earth in order to cover up for the fact that an alien spacecraft was landing in rural Kansas. So with that in mind there is an explanation for the presence of Kryptonite within the Smallville series, but none for any other of the adaptations.

    Anyone else?
     
  2. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The Donner films and "Superman Returns" clearly show Kal's spacecraft leaving Krypton shortly before Rao goes supernova and creating the blast (probably a gamma ray burst) that destroys Krypton. Especially in "Superman Returns" we see the debris and various amounts of Green K zoom past us and I assume...following the ship. "Smallville" attempted to tie-itself into the DonnerVerse and was heavily influenced by it as well.
     
  3. Argus Skyhawk

    Argus Skyhawk Commodore Commodore

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    Or ever. It would take thousands if not millions of years for objects traveling at sub-light speeds to reach us from another galaxy. That's assuming that the debris from planet Krypton would even be blown fast enough to escape the gravity well of its own galaxy, which is unlikely.

    Since one lightyear is about six trillion miles, and since even the closest solar systems to our own are multiple lightyears away, even if Krypton were located right here in our own Milky Way galaxy, by the time debris from Krypton reached us it would be so spread out that none of it would hit a tiny speck like the Earth.

    In other words, you are correct. Out of all the scores of things that are unrealistic about the story of a man from space who can fly and shoot X-Rays from his eyes, the meteors from planet Krypton are definitely one of them.
     
  4. Mr Silver

    Mr Silver Commodore Newbie

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    :lol:

    I'd have been much happier had they came up with some explanation such as there being a wormhole that bridged the Kryptonian galaxy with the Milky Way and that both Kal El and the shockwave of debris from Krypton traveled through said wormhole.
     
  5. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The whole idea that only debris of his home planet would weaken Superman is kinda hilarious. I mean... why?



    Kryptonite is something that was created during the destruction of his home planet. But it's a material that's created everywhere in the universe every time a star explodes. So the Kryptonite found on Earth is not from Krypton. Or something.
     
  6. Mr Silver

    Mr Silver Commodore Newbie

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    Perhaps the creation of Kryptonite is dependent on the radiation from Rao coming into contact with the radioactive elements within the debris of Krypton itself, like Kryptonian rubidium coming into contact with gamma rays?
     
  7. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  8. ClayinCA

    ClayinCA Commodore Commodore

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    If memory serves, this was the exact explanation used by DC Comics' Superman editors at least up until Crisis on Infinite Earths (and possibly even after that, I'm not sure) to explain how the hell so much Kryptonite ended up on Earth.
     
  9. davejames

    davejames Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Well in the original comics I think Krypton was only meant to exist in a neighboring solar system or something (in fact in the radio show it was located within our own solar system).

    It's not until later that Krypton was pushed back to being in some far off distant galaxy (or in the case of the Donner movies, almost another dimension). In that case, I think it was just assumed that pieces of kryptonite got caught up in the wake of Kal-el's spaceship as it entered the vortex/wormhole to Earth.
     
  10. captcalhoun

    captcalhoun Admiral Admiral

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    i assumed Krypton was in our galaxy.

    but there again, i shouldn't be surprised it's been changed since DC can't keep the same continuity for more than 10 years without having to fart it about.
     
  11. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    The opening sequence of "Superman Returns" shows Clark's ship going into what I have always assumed to be a wormhole...but it could have been something else. I have long theorized that Krypton in the DonnerVerse is in the Andromeda Galaxy. In the comic book DCU/52'Verse I assume that Krypton is in our galaxy. I don't think this has ever been fully established though.
     
  12. Venardhi

    Venardhi Vice Admiral Admiral

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    There is another solution of course: That the pod he was in kept him in stasis for thousands or millions of years.
     
  13. SalvorHardin

    SalvorHardin Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    As far as Krypton locations go, in Superman:Birthright the Andromeda Galaxy was stated as Krypton's location.

    It has also been mentioned to be in the Milky Way and in a sector of space close to Earth, 50 light years away. Tomar-Re was also supposed to be the Green Lantern assigned to the Krypton section.

    And it's been many years since I've seen the Donner movies but didn't they say little Kal's ship would travel through six galaxies to get to Earth? I guess that could mean it's either beyond Andromeda or even in one of the dwarf galaxies orbiting the Milky Way.
     
  14. Mr Silver

    Mr Silver Commodore Newbie

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    Indeed, there is that possibility, but at the same time that may have just been a route that Superman discovered to speed up the time it takes travelling between Earth and Krypton.

    Then again, perhaps the opening sequence was merely the Sol and Rao systems with a collection of random celestial phenomena filling the journey in between. The wormhole actually appears more like a black hole/gravitational anomaly, but who knows.

    I love the Donner-verse movies, but I just couldn't accept the events depicted in those movies being written into Superman comic canon. It starts with Superman altering the rotation of Earth to turn back time (one of the lamest methods of time travel ever depicted in fiction), peaks with Zod and company using finger telekinesis and ends with Superman using "masonry vision" to rebuild the Great Wall of China.

    The Donner-verse Superman gave Earth 1 Superman a run for his money in the powers department.
     
  15. Admiral_Young

    Admiral_Young Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    One of the reasons why so much DonnerVerse stuff was written into the pre-52'Verse DCU was because Geoff Johns admired and previous worked for Richard Donner as an intern, and of course the two co-plotted the Last Son story which kicked off Johns Action Comics run.
     
  16. Admiral Buzzkill

    Admiral Buzzkill Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    In Byrne's version the only Kryptonite on Earth was a meteor that embedded itself in the hull of Kal-El's "gestation pod" as it was launched via the star drive that Jor-El attached it to - Kal's escape was clearly a very, very last second kind of thing. Cutting it close. :lol:

    There was some logic to that, though. As has been pointed out, over the decades so much Kryptonite has showed up here that it seems as if Krypton's explosion was somehow pointed straight at Earth and nowhere else.
     
  17. Argus Skyhawk

    Argus Skyhawk Commodore Commodore

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    To be fair, I did not interpret that scene as Superman altering the rotation of the Earth, but rather that he was flying around the Earth faster than light. Relativity suggests that if one could travel faster than light, you would travel backward in time, so Earth's rotation would appear to be going backward.

    Of course, Relativity also says that it is impossible to accelerate from slower-than-light to faster-than-light, so I'm not saying the movie was being realistic there. Just saying that he wasn't simply pushing the Earth backward.
     
  18. Dick Whitman

    Dick Whitman Commodore Commodore

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    I agree. From Superman's point of view he is seeing time moving slowly backwards. Its basically the same experience as in George Pal's adaptation of The Time Machine.
     
  19. JarodRussell

    JarodRussell Vice Admiral Admiral

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    One problem with Superman, in general, not only the live-action stuff, is his strength of plot. A bit consistency would be nice. Does he get exhausted? What's his maximum flying speed? His maximum strength? Why does he have trouble catching up with a missile, but then he can go in lightspeed around the Earth? One moment he looks pretty exterted lifting a car, the other moment he lifts and entire continent/island.
     
  20. Mr Silver

    Mr Silver Commodore Newbie

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    He does need some strict limitations, if only to have more in the way of challenges for Superman.

    Superman shouldn't be able to reach speeds close to, exactly or beyond the speed of light whilst on Earth. I never liked the concept introduced in Smallville where Clark/Superman was fast enough to save several people in different locations all around the world and return within a couple of seconds. Not only does this cheapen the DC universe (if Superman is so fast, what is the point in there being other superheroes?) but it defeats the object of what the character is all about - namely that Superman isn't there to assist with any and every little thing that goes wrong, he's the guy who answers the big threats and stops the evil super powered characters that threaten the Earth whilst serving as a symbol of justice and inspiration.

    With that in mind, a limiter such as the Sun-Earth EM field should be written in, in order to prevent Superman from moving at the speed of light (or beyond) whilst he is in the vicinity of Earth (and definitely whilst he is within the atmosphere.)
     

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