Earlier this week, a Redditor counted up all of Superman's lines in Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice and came to the conclusion that the Man of Steel didn't have much of a presence in his own sequel.
The post went viral, as such things tend to do, and brought with it a whole lot of disagreement about the film, Superman's portrayal, and whether a perceived dearth of lines for the Last Son of Krypton might lend some credence to some criticisms that suggest director Zack Snyder doesn't particularly like the character.
Well, longtime Superman writer/artist Dan Jurgens, who penned the best-selling The Death of Superman and currently writes Superman: Lois and Clark, doesn't think it's that big a deal, apparently. Yesterday, he took to Twitter to voice his opinion that you could manage a good Superman movie with far less:
I think it'd be possible to make a great Superman movie in which he doesn't say a single word. Silence the key. Strong, quiet inspiration.— Dan Jurgens (@thedanjurgens) April 19, 2016
Lots of fans responded to his comments suggesting that in the classic Fleischer cartoons -- shorts, not feature films, but still often referred to as the best Superman movies ever made -- Superman rarely-if-ever spoke while in his superhero identity, and generally only piped up as Clark Kent.
(To be fair, Clark's lines were counted among those in the Reddit post.)
Superman has been depicted in a number of ways over the years; he's never been quite as conversational as "sarcastic" heroes like Deadpool, Spider-Man and post-movies Iron Man, but he's rarely been quite as stoic as Batman. Still, one fan notes that even in a recent issue of Justice League, The Flash characterized Superman as not being a talker.
Regarding totally-silent stories, comics are no strangers to those (even if they're much more rare on film). Following the September 11 terror attacks, Marvel Comics did a whole "Moment of Silence" month, and one of the most famous G.I. Joe stories of all time was a "silent issue."
In Superman's case, the Alex Ross oversized graphic novel Superman: Peace on Earth -- upon which many of the images in the montage of Superman's accomplishments in Batman V Superman appeared to be based -- was largely without dialogue, although the Man of Steel provided a first-person narration in the story and there were at least a couple of occasions where he related to the reader that he had exchanged words with somebody he was helping.0comments
Jurgens himself wrote a memorable, silent Superman sequence in recent memory -- when Superman helped deliver his son, Jonathan Kent, into the world during the Convergence crossover event.
Superman: Lois and Clark #7 is on sale today.