It’s Pre-Crisis Superman. Several writers including Mark Millar see Superman that way.
The one in Red Son is Elseworlds Superman, but imo it’s darn good and possibly the best interpretation of the character. Chief understands Man of Steel all the way.
Mark and I have had a couple conversations about Superman. He leans towards the interpretation that Superman is the primary personality and Clark Kent is an elaborate character that he plays very similar to Bill.
I prefer a more Post-Crisis approach to Superman but love multiple interpretations of the character.
I prefer also post-Crisis, what John Byrne done with his reboot is amazing. Though isn’t Byrne’s version abolished by Waid’s Birthright?
Birthright is actually my favorite origin. It combines the best of Pre and Post-Crisis in my mind.
Read this tonight, I thought it was fantastic
Loved the format and how JRJR adjusted to the space.
I got lost in it, hit last pages before I knew it
It felt very much like the core of Clark Kent, yet it didn’t feel like any other Superman book I’ve read. It was very relatable despite Clark being from another planet.
Look forward to seeing where it goes next
Oh, but I’m not talking about that interpretation, which indeed is the original interpretation of the character previous to 1986. That’s the thing Bill gets right. What people don’t get about the speech is the part about Clark Kent being a critique of the human race. That’s supposed to tell us something about how big of an egomaniac Bill is and how much of a god complex he has and how he is incapable of understanding the idea of someone extraordinary like Superman wanting to have a normal life. People take the speech at face value thinking it says something revelatory about Superman but the whole point is that Bill is supposed to be wrong about Superman and the movie knows it.
A lot of writers who favor Pre-Crisis Superman see him that way too. They think Superman sees humans as almost pets. That Clark is an elaborate character that he portrays. There’s a particular essay by Elliot S! Maggin that embodies this but I can’t find it right now.
The point of Bill’s speech is that Superman is the real person and his suit with the cape and S are his real close. He dresses up as Clark Kent.
Maybe he sees us as weak and fragile but I’m pretty sure it’s not in a contemptuous way, more like a protective one.
I still hope for that Mark Millar Superman story, even if he says he’s never gonna do it.
Never say never. He works for Netflix now so it won’t happen in the foreseeable future but then Frank Miller much more dramatically walked out on DC vowing never to work with them again in 1988 and we’re discussing this book today.
Does… does this mean Alan Moore isn’t really in retirement? gasp