Mike Madriaga 2:30 p.m., Sept. 19
Man of Steel, Man of God
"Have fun with this!" read the email from my Jewish fellow critic. Good fellow that he is, he was leaving it up to his Christian counterpart to address the conversion of Superman from immigrant Jewish mensch to weird Christ figure. Gosh, thanks, pal.
"And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to myself."
It doesn't help, of course, when Christians take the bait SO VERY HARD in their exxxtreme desire for cultural relevance.
Le sigh. Yes, Christians believe that Jesus was a guy from Somewhere Else who had superduper powers that he employed for the good of mankind. But hello, Atonement? Jesus Christ is the original guy who was Born to Die. Yes, he said and did a lot of inspiring things. But first and foremost, he died for our sins. Dead, dead, dead. For us. His power, says this one book about him, was perfected in his weakness.
Are those kryptonite nails?
Further - oh yes, further - Christ didn't show up and say, "Humanity! I'm better than you! Aspire to my perfection!" According to John's Gospel, he literally became man. While remaining God. Near as I can figure, the drama of this here Man of Steel movie comes from the fact of Superman's status as inhuman. He is not one of us. Christ was one of us - that's how he saved us. He made himself susceptible to death so that he could die in our place. It's not a small difference.
I'll probably have to spout off some more after I see it. But for now, enough. Please. Let Superman be the sort of awesome Jew that Joe Biden would have praised.
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