The release of the second Man of Steel trailer, which hit today at noon, has resulted in a day of the comics community uniting to praise Superman–something that hasn’t happened in quite a while, considering the problems DC has had finding the character’s footing in the New 52.
We also got a lot of new information to process in this trailer; we wanted to single a few things out, though, as of particular interest.
Note that predictions and questions raised, we’ll probably talk about later. Right now, we just wanted to look at some things that are, or seem to be, straight-out facts.
Jonathan Kent is dead
When talking with (we assume) Lois at the end of the trailer, Superman says, “my father believed that if the world found out who I really was, they’d reject me. He was convinced that the world wasn’t ready. What do you think?” Besides being the line that gave us the most goosebumps, it also conveys something powerful: Superman is talking about Jonathan Kent in the past tense.
Losing Jonathan Kent has been treated as an essential part of Superman’s mythology in recent years, popping up first in All-Star Superman and then again during Geoff Johns’s run on Action Comics. Pa Kent is quickly becoming the Uncle Ben of the DC Universe.
Superman got his powers very young
Many fans who had heard about the school bus save thought that might be the first time Superman uses his powers in the new film–and that might be true, in terms of using them on purpose.
This trailer opens, though, with a very young Clark Kent trying to hide from a world that’s bombarding his enhanced senses, and Martha trying to help him through it. This hearkens more to the Silver Age/Richard Donner take on the character than the version seen in John Byrne’s Man of Steel and then throughout the ’90s.
Which, really, should be no surprise since that’s what DC is back to in the comics.
This one’s really only notable because the very first promotional shot from the movie seemed a bit inexplicable at the time. Superman in front of a twisted and mangled bank vault, looking angry? What?!
Oh, it’s because he’s been thrown through the side of the building, mangled the vault, and apparently must be getting back up to get in the fight.
That makes more sense.
The “S” shield is a Kryptonian sigil (again)
Once again, this is in keeping with the current comics mythology but it hasn’t always been the case and it seems worth noting. The Superman logo is apparently a Kryptonian symbol again, possibly representative of the House of El, or possibly something else. In any event, it’s on the “key” to the Fortress of Solitude that Clark holds onto at one point in the trailer, apparently before he dons the costume.
This suggests that it’s not something Martha sewed down in Kansas, but something that’s been carried with him.
Then again, this may not be a revelation; it seems that similar logos have been seen on Jor-El and Zod along the way. But for the average, casual fan watching this trailer who hasn’t been stalking set photos online, that’s new information.
On the Donner films and their sequels, and then through Smallville and Superman Returns, Krypton had a very specific look–the hard angles, the robes, the crystals. This time, it’s a bit more futuristic, and looks inspired or informed by what Kubert did with it during his guest stint on Action Comics (although it was likely the other way around). The Fortress seems metal, with rounded edges, and the spacecraft we see appears to be the same way (although there’s some technological pointy edges around it).