on being super
it all changed the day superman died. the death of superman marked the end of an era and unveiled the truth of the times in which we live. we killed him in 1993. supes was the real thing. a true superhero consistent inside and out. nobody can touch the man in greatness. he represented all that we hope to be. he fought for truth and justice…and “the american way?” comic book writers have long played around with whether supes is the real thing or not. jerry and george in seinfeld debate over the extent of supe’s powers. george, skeptical, believes that super is only skin-deep and does not apply to the inner man.1 would superman still be superman if he was stripped of his powers? the answer is yes. a non-super superman is still a hero.
after supes died we continued to kill superheroes. what has given way from that event are heroes that are more or less like us. they’ve got issues. they’re fallible. they’re not who we want to be anymore they’re who we are, who we can be. also, villains were no longer villians. they are capable of doing good and can possibly be turned. in comes the reign the anti-hero.
that’s the significance behind the character of darth vader and the current series of star wars I, II, and the soon to be released III [may 19]. we get to see his ascension/descension as young anakin skywalker, an extraordinary individual, different, and capable of doing great good … or great evil. unclear his future is. can you relate christian? i think this tension is what we also read in romans 7 and galatians. the greatest battle on earth, the flesh vs. the spirit. everyday it is our battle with who we want to be or should be and who we actually are right now. but battle we must. as we already know anakin falls to the dark side but the original star wars series shows us that there is still hope, in him and through his seed.
true superheroes hope. they have faith, fighting for and believing in something not yet seen. supes never killed anyone even under the most extreme circumstances. if they had died he was not unmoved and cold. here’s the mystique behind the batman. he’s a dark conflicted character. he’s not a real superhero and i think we may get a glimpse of that this summer in batman begins. his vigilance is motivated by revenge and not by hope. he may enjoy his work a little too much and that is something that he has to war with in his soul. he’s serious in dealing with wrongdoers. the villains end up in arkham asylum where they must work out their behavior. with batman gotham always lives in fear. i like the bat because he’s me, often a slave to law. i know the good i ought to do but…
who needs superheroes anyway? i think we do. but we need to realize that even they are limited. superman’s death and death in his world is utterly significant. it proves that he’s limited. supes’ mission is to save the world. but ultimately we know he can’t. death and suffering in superman’s world reminds even him that with all his powers he can’t save. neither can we. so we stand at the foot of the cross, approaching with confidence that the son is now at the right hand of the father for our sake and that he will return. we must choose life – walk by faith in the spirit. go in peace. up, up and away.
“The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature [ Or his flesh, from the flesh] will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.”~ Galatians 6:8
i’m drunk and I’m feeling down / and i just wanna be alone / i’m pissed ’cause you came around / why don’t you just go home? / cause i channeled all your pain / and i can’t help you fix yourself / you’re making me insane / all I can say is…
i tear my heart open, i sew myself shut / and my weakness is that i care too much / and our scars remind us that the past is real / i tear my heart open just to feel
i tried to help you once / against my own advice / i saw you going down / but you never realized
that you’re drowning in the water / so i offered you my hand / compassion’s in my nature / tonight is our last stand ~ scars, papa roach
1 Brewer, Michael, Who Needs a Superhero? grand Rapids, baker Books, 2004. 22