Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Superman and the Costume of Doom!


I am a bit behind the curve and only recently finished watching the Showtime series The Tudors. It's taken most of the summer, but I finally saw the last episode where crotchety old Henry VIII bids us adieu. Despite the series title, my favorite character wasn't Henry, but his best friend, the Duke of Suffolk, played by Henry Cavill. I realized about halfway through that he was the actor who would also be playing Superman in the next movie and from that moment on, no matter how hard I tried, I kept seeing him in that famous cape and tights, complete with that silly little curlicue of hair that Christopher Reeve did best.


The first sneak peek of the new Superman costume has been out for awhile, but new set photos of The Man of Steel recently appeared on a facebook page for the movie. It's not the bright blue and red that I have been picturing in my head. In fact, the red trunks are completely gone. Even the cape is gone in some shots, but who knows what things will look in the actual movie. These are just shots from the set. Maybe there will be a CGI cape in some scenes and the absence of this crucial accessory isn't really an issue. Maybe a bit of lighting and editing and this somewhat grungy, dark, not at all like previous incarnations suit will look just perfect and we'll all be raving about it as we leave theaters. Maybe.

Not suprisingly, much of the interent is having a collective conniption over the latest costume images.  People are crying foul about, well, everything. They hate it. It's an atrocity. It's destined to make the movie a failure. His muscles are too big.  The suit is too dark. The cape, when it's there, is way too big.  How could they do something so clealy awful and misguided and, and, and.... it's an endless anti-suit litany.

Now, it wasn't too long ago that pictures of a certain other superhero surfaced and the internet had a very similar conniption.  Anyone remember Wonder Woman? The costume she was supposed to wear in the television show that never actually made it to the air received a huge amount of hate from fans. There were even changes made along the way that seemed to take in to account some of the criticisms in an effort to make the costume more acceptable and presumably give the series half a chance.  It didn't work and good costume or bad, we won't get to see Diana Prince fighting bad guys, deflecting bullets, and saving the world any time soon.

That leaves me thinking that, even if Superman's costume isn't perfect, even if there are those among us that say the movie is destined for failure because of it, do any of us really want to see that happen? Wouldn't you rather hope that there's a vision here that we can't quite see, something that will become clear once we see the movie on the screen rather than in still shots from a set?  I know I'm looking forward to the movie even if I'm not a big fan of the costume right now. I choose to be hopeful, but, costume issues aside, that missing curlicue of hair on his forehead is driving me nuts.  I'd love to know what the rest of you think....

3 comments:

  1. You forgot to mention the missing S on the cape. I've heard a lot of flak about that one too. I am not hating the new costume and it is a hell of a lot better looking than the one they would have used for Nic Cage if that Superman movie ever got made. I think if the movie is good, people will start to forget about their issues with the costume. You just can't please everyone though. Some people will refuse to see because they butchered the costume. I'm sure Zack Snyder is wanting this movie to stand out and be the Superman film we all want it to be. Right now, I just want it to be good and worthy of the Superman legacy, to heck with how the costume looks for now.

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  2. Not sure if it will cause the failure of the movie, but with a franchise like Superman, people *expect* him to look and act a certain way, and if he doesn't I think they're less likely to support the movie.

    I definitely have problems with the suit - the bumpy texture, the plastic sheen, and the weird design elements definitely seem out of place. That said, I think it's almost impossible for most superhero outfits to translate well to the big (or small) screen, especially in the age of high definition. I think the only one I've ever seen that seemed perfect was Iron Man and that's probably just because there wasn't the danger of an uncanny valley between the character's human features and their costume.

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  3. It's a bird! It's a plane! It's a Chippendale stripper in a Halloween costume.

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