: Obviously, this book is the most explicit SF–Christ story since Behold the Man, only...happy. Superman/Christ parallels have existed for decades, but this story makes it absolutely explicit, from laying his hands on the sick and dying to...well, most of issue #12. You’ve dealt with Christ themes before, particularly in The Mystery Play, but outside of the comics, how do you see Superman as a Christ figure for the “real” world?
: The “Superman as Christ” thing is a little too reductive for me, and tends to overlook the fact that Superman is by no means a pacifist in the Christ sense. Superman would never turn the other cheek; Superman punches out the bully. Superman is a fighter.
When did Christ ever batter the Devil through a mountain?
The thing I disliked about the Superman Returns movie was the American Christ angle, which reduced Superman to a sniveling, masochistic wreck, crawling around on the floor, taking a kicking from everyone. This approach had an odd and slightly disturbing S&M flavor, which didn’t play well to the character’s strengths at all and seemed to derive entirely from a kind of Catholic vision of the suffering, martyred Jesus.
It’s not that he’s based on Jesus, but simply that a lot of the mythical sun god elements which have been layered onto the Christ story also appear in the story of Superman.
I suppose I see Superman more as pagan sci–fi. He’s a secular messiah, a science redeemer with tough guy muscles and a very direct and clear morality.