The "Boy Scout" persona was dated, anyway

#1 Posted by VampireSelektor (749 posts) - - Show Bio

First, let me note that Action Comics should have been the sole Superman title if Grant Morrison did not feel like sharing plot details with George Perez. A smooth transition between the ongoing Superman gaiden (origin story, for you squares out there) and a title set in the present would have been more comprehensible for readers. Now on to my main point: The widely-renowned "Boy Scout" persona that Superman sported since World War II was ripe for discardment. Hitler and the Nazis presented a threat that made American culture - everyone knows the slogan - morally superior. But in the infancy of his page-life, Superman was an aggressive socialist, a man of the people who righted wrongs regardless of the laws in place. Nowadays, in the current DIY-environment permeating the world, and the moral ambiguity of all nations, the "haughty progressive" stands more relevant than the "boy scout". Also, the Superman/Batman dynamic has changed, arguably for the better. It's refreshing to watch Superman's progressive "come on, guys! We can save the world!" play against Batman's "my mission will never end. I'll put you down if you get too rowdy".

#2 Posted by SandMan_ (4528 posts) - - Show Bio

Well..there where sometimes where the whole Boyscout Scout routine kinda got on my nerves.

#3 Posted by Remi (613 posts) - - Show Bio

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

#4 Posted by Crom-Cruach (8736 posts) - - Show Bio

@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

#5 Posted by Thorion88 (310 posts) - - Show Bio

@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

This for the most part.

But it should be be noted all characters get dated eventually, no matter who they are.

Except if your name is Wolverine and then you get a free pass in everything cause technically Marvel's set him up to be written as anything.

#6 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32746 posts) - - Show Bio
@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

Not really, since Superman was around before he got the boy scout persona 
#7 Edited by Remi (613 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

Not really, since Superman was around before he got the boy scout persona

It was what made him the character that he is today, well pre new 52. It doesn't matter if it came after his creation/first appearance.

#8 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32746 posts) - - Show Bio
@Remi said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

Not really, since Superman was around before he got the boy scout persona

It was what made him the character that he is today, well pre new 52. It doesn't matter if it came after his creation/first appearance.

no, it's just what has been accustomed to. It doesn't define the character 
#9 Edited by Remi (613 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@Remi said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

Not really, since Superman was around before he got the boy scout persona

It was what made him the character that he is today, well pre new 52. It doesn't matter if it came after his creation/first appearance.

no, it's just what has been accustomed to. It doesn't define the character

Then what does if not his boy scout persona?

#10 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32746 posts) - - Show Bio
@Remi said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@Remi said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

@Remi said:

It was never dated. That was what made him Superman.

Not really, since Superman was around before he got the boy scout persona

It was what made him the character that he is today, well pre new 52. It doesn't matter if it came after his creation/first appearance.

no, it's just what has been accustomed to. It doesn't define the character

Then what does if not his boy scout persona?

His emblem, his origins, his powers. Also some one to look up to but that doesn't = boy scout 
#11 Posted by Remi (613 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

His emblem, his origins, his powers. Also some one to look up to but that doesn't = boy scout

But the whole boy scout persona was what made people look up to him not just his powers.

#12 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32746 posts) - - Show Bio
@Remi said:

@Jonny_Anonymous said:

His emblem, his origins, his powers. Also some one to look up to but that doesn't = boy scout

But the whole boy scout persona was what made people look up to him not just his powers.

Doing the right thing is what made pepole look up to him and that still doesn't = boy scout 
#13 Posted by VampireSelektor (749 posts) - - Show Bio

Superman as a superpowered social progressive endeared him to readers who had the Depression still fresh on their minds. The "Boy Scout" is just what most people tend to remember most about Superman, particularly during WWII and the Cold War.

#14 Posted by VampireSelektor (749 posts) - - Show Bio

I feel like "All-Star Superman" was the last great story for the "Boy Scout" persona, an unintentional requiem for the Silver Age Superman.

#15 Posted by cellot (80 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jonny_Anonymous: I agree and disagree. It's the old dilemma of: This knife has been in my family for generations. Sometimes the blade has been broken and needed to be replaced, sometimes the handle, but it's still the same knife. Is it really the same knife if everything has been replaced? For most superheroes we can love them as they grow and change with the times, and still appreciate their legacy. However in Superman's case it seems like the knife has been put on in a display case as is, and now you're suggesting that the handle be changed.

The handle being changed doesn't necessarily mean it's a different knife, but at this point it is something that we may view as an integral part of that particular knife. While historically you could have changed Superman's personality more, at this point we view it as integral to him it would be a problem to change. If at some point superman is no long "on the mantle," so to speak, and isn't held up as a classic and standard, then he can be changed around a lot more and we'll still view him as the same superman. For now though, it would be sacrilege change him.

#16 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32746 posts) - - Show Bio
@cellot: It's not really changing the handle though, it's more like putting the original one back on 
#17 Posted by cellot (80 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jonny_Anonymous: Yeah, and see how well suggesting to repaint every greek statue to its original goes. They may have originally been colored in brightly colored paint, but that's not how we want to see them now. Their contribution to post-dark ages Western culture was greatest with the paint off so we generally want to see them that way, even if they were originally much more flamboyant. In the same way, Superman's contributions have been greatest during and post WWII, with the boy scout persona.

#18 Posted by Jonny_Anonymous (32746 posts) - - Show Bio
@cellot: I disagree 
#19 Posted by Dernman (14744 posts) - - Show Bio

I liked the Boy Scout it's who he is. I just don't like it when they got ridiculous with it.

#20 Posted by VampireSelektor (749 posts) - - Show Bio

@cellot: You do have a point. Superman enjoyed his greatest success after WWII, but by the 2000s, the "Boy Scout" stories wore thinner and thinner. "Infinite Crisis" and "Kingdom Come" were partially about Superman struggling to balance his then-persona with the always-implied mantle of leadership the superhero community placed on his shoulders. The most recent stories were just horrible. If Batman is adaptable for the times, If Wonder Woman can change for the better, why not Superman? Also, in a way, Superman is still the same hero, striving for universal good, only now his politics have been altered/reset.

#21 Edited by Dernman (14744 posts) - - Show Bio

The recent stories were not horrible because of the boy scout concept. It was because many other reason. Some writers shared many of the misconceptions that fans held over Superman. Some just plain didn't get him or his way nor like it.  Also DC in many cases had written themselves into a corner with Superman because they went overboard that the writers felt trapped with no room to move.

#22 Posted by TheGoldenOne (38849 posts) - - Show Bio
@Dernman said:
I liked the Boy Scout it's who he is. I just don't like it when they got ridiculous with it.
#23 Posted by cellot (80 posts) - - Show Bio

@Jonny_Anonymous: You disagree with what? There were a lot of different points in there.

@VampireSelektor: I agree! However, the best way to start that is probably with a spin-off/alternate universe, or something that could become a spin off/alternate universe if it fails.

#24 Posted by SandMan_ (4528 posts) - - Show Bio

I don't know...It seems like this argument is 2 sides of the same coin. Superman can be good and do the right thing without being a boy scout.

#25 Posted by ssejllenrad (12847 posts) - - Show Bio

Sigh... Action Comics 775

#26 Posted by jrock85 (2874 posts) - - Show Bio

I've never bought into the idea that a character has to be dark and brooding to be appealing (not that I don't have an appreciation for those type of characters). I'm fine with Supes being a "boy scout".

#27 Posted by SuperJimmy (20 posts) - - Show Bio

Don't know why people still bitch about this whole "boy scout" concept. I have never linked this name to superman myself only suddenly somebody started to use it frequently and then others followed. It doesn't mean a thing really. Superman is superman. You can't replace this name with others (maybe other than man of steel?).

#28 Posted by SuperJimmy (20 posts) - - Show Bio

Buddy, you do realize what batman said is not what you interpreted, right?

#29 Posted by Imagine_Man15 (1801 posts) - - Show Bio

@Dernman said:

I liked the Boy Scout it's who he is. I just don't like it when they got ridiculous with it.

Couldn't agree more.

#30 Posted by VampireSelektor (749 posts) - - Show Bio

@SuperJimmy: Superman is Superman, but Batman is also Batman, a hero who has undergone reinvention so many times to the point of reaching full circle twice. People have been calling Superman a "Boy Scout" since WWII, long before you and I were rummaging through comic book racks. No better time than now for readers to explore his roots. Also, I was exaggerating about the Superman/Batman dynamic. I'm sorry if you're upset.

#31 Posted by VampireSelektor (749 posts) - - Show Bio

@SuperJimmy: Hmm, that last sentence was a bit snarky. Mea culpa.

#32 Posted by Katie24 (488 posts) - - Show Bio

I like the "New" Superman, I think he has a lot of potential. I just wish DC would give him some better writers. The Superman title is a hot mess and Action Comics is just "meh". Superman deserves better.

#33 Posted by SandMan_ (4528 posts) - - Show Bio

Superman should have the attitude he has in Justice League.

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