01 March 2012

Behind The Cap

In the handout, “Up Up and Oy Vey,” it tells us about where the idea of Superman came from. The article starts out with a brief summary of an event called “the Night of Broken Glass.” When this event happened, a hundred Jewish people were killed and the hundreds were injured. Synagogue is a place of worship for the Jews and 177 of them were destroyed on this faithful night. At the ending of this summary, it states that the world “needed a hero-fast.”

This was the calling of two young men, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. But Jerry Siegel is the one that writes about how he came upon the idea of creating such a superhero. He said that he has had an image of what kind of superhero character that he would want to create but on one faithful night the character came to him in a clearer image. They wanted to make a superhero that would somehow represent their own personal lives; their struggles and their put downs. Superman as a person is shy and nervous when it comes to talking to women, just like the Jerry and Joe. This characteristic of Superman or Clark was a reflection of the social acceptance struggle that the two men struggled with. He is also Jewish, the same ethnicity as the two creators.

The story of Superman is a mirrored image of some events that happened in Germany in 1939. Although there are parts of the story have been altered. Superman was sent to Earth by his parents in a spacecraft that his father made. His father did this because he was convinced that their planet was going to blow up. This was a mirrored image of when German Jewish families sent their children off to England. In the #10 issue of Superman is a mirrored image of the Olympics of Berlin in 1936. The German team came into the arena with their arms stretched out well saying “heil Hitler.” This was also when Hitler was trying to say that Germans were the superior race of the world. And was expecting the German team to outperform everybody at the Olympics.

Some can also say that the story of Superman can be a mirrored image of the biblical story of Moses. The people were facing the murder of any male heirs that were born. So in an attempt of saving Moses, his mother places him in a basket and sends him down stream to be found by the Pharaoh daughter. She finds him and raises him as her son and he later receives an inspirational talk from God.

During the creation of Superman, the country was experiencing the Great Depression. Jerry and Joe tried their best to make sure that Superman was published. They would gather whatever they had just to afford a postage stamp. Joe would then draw on some cheap brown wrapping paper. Just like some young artist, they received rejection letters. But they didn’t let that stop them from trying to publish Superman. But little did they know that Superman would become an American icon. They finally found a publisher that was willing to publish Superman. They got paid $130 for the first 13 pages of Superman comic in June of 1938. The issue that sold out quickly would be worth today about $450,000.

This handout made me realize that this story is a replica of the biblical story and that the storyline has been reused numerous times in cartoons, but the characters, setting are changed. It just makes think about how many stories could be mirrored storylines of other ancient stories. It is funny how we could read modern stories about almost anything and not even realize that it could be an altered version of another story. For example, Dragon Ball Z and Superman are the same but altered characters and settting. I didn’t even notice this until Mr. V made it noticeable in class.

1 comment:

  1. Late!

    Not a bad post, Que. But how does this relate to another text we've read?