|DEATH OF SUPERMAN 2018 REVIEW| A REAL TEAR JERKER
As an individual who loathes every time the red and blue boy scout appears on screen, I must admit a guilty pleasure of mine is the Death of Superman story line. No, it's not because Superman gets bested either, instead it's how Superman almost becomes genuinely human in his struggles both in his personal and professional life. The newest addition to the Death of Superman saga that DC has decided to animate is from the New 52 revival and the small details included into this universe just tickles me pink. Grab your capes because the Death of Superman is one wild ride you'd have to be indestructible to not get into your feels.
The Death of Superman stands out among other Superman stories as Clark Kent attempts to balance his superhero duties, his secret identity, and last but not least his whirlwind of a love life. In this iteration of the story, Clark and Lois find themselves at odds when the constant missed dinners, random disappearances, and shaky excuses no longer hold weight. I think this deeper exploration of Superman's love life is important as it humanizes his struggles. Often we make decisions in hopes to protect the ones we love but here in the Death of Superman, it is doing the exact opposite for Clark's relationship. This isn't the only relationship we see the director focus on either.
Wonder Woman makes several appearances in the film as if solely to remind the viewer that they too had a romantic past. Diana teases him here and there but I think it shows Superman's growth as a character. Things he withheld from Diana he is trying to make different decisions with Lois. Not only that but Clark has to learn to balance a solely working relationship with an ex. These are everyday problems we as humans can be placed in to. How do you mend a friendship after crossing over into a romantic relationship? Do you take the fumbles from your previous one and ensure you dont make the same with the next? Great questions that Clark seems to boggle over within his own mind.
Where previously Superman always made the correct decisions we see here that maybe he's not the infallible boy scout we thought him to be. On top of that Clark finds himself challenged physically by the beast known as Doomsday. He is literally Superman's equal in every way but intelligence, at least one that can be measured. Doomsday can go blow for blow with the tights wearing laser beam chucking fella and this causes Superman to make one tough call in order to save everything he loves. This is so out of character for the original Superman writing that I reveled in it. Rough circumstances calls for tough calls that may not fall in line with a character's original ideology, but when push comes to shove, what needs to be done must be done if it is for the good of everything else. A particular reason I am fond of characters like Batman, Toph, and Korra-regardless of their personal feelings on the matter at hand, they will do whatever it takes!
It was so refreshing to see Superman explored in this light. That doesn't mean make Clark a dark and brooding character. It's not in his nature. As he says, "He's a small town boy just trying to do what's right!" But at the very least allow him room to grow as a character and not an idol! I think DC Comics did a great job capturing these small moments of growth and eloquently animating them on the small screen.
Now this may be catty of me, but I would've loved to see Diana's feelings towards Superman's budding relationship explored more. There are still very tender moments between Diana and Clark that I truly enjoyed during this film, even the small hints of jealousy. Diana clearly had questions for Superman during some scenes and I think it would've been nice to add a little bit more humor to this rather dark story at the expense of their broken relationship.
Some of the one liners were cheesy. The dialogue a bit drawn out in some scenes but its not enough to make you truly hate the film. A bit more editing and life from Lois lane's voice actor could've gone a long way!
Not only that, but again this is nit picking, I hate cliff hangers. Yes I know the original film had a cliff hanger, the animated Justice League episodes had cliff hangers, the comics were cliff hangers, believe me I am very aware, but GOD for once I was swept into a story starring Superman and BOOM it's over! I actually felt the loss of metropolis and suddenly it was all over. It was bound to happen but I still wish there was more.
All in all, for once I genuinely enjoyed a Superman based animated film from DC Comics. Yes it has it's flaws like cheesy one liners, but I do believe the animators and writers did a great job of making viewers feel the loss of Lois, the Justice League, and everyone else in Metropolis. While giving sideline character's light like the bar owner and watching tears flow down his eyes, you could really feel the impact Superman had on his city. It felt alive. It felt real and even for a tough girl like myself, my eyes started to swell a bit. Batman is still my favorite (obviously) but this was honestly a great watch like its predecessor in 2007 (better known as Superman: Doomsday). I give The Death of Superman an 8.5/10
Check out the trailer here: