Superman and Jesus
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There's a new book out claiming that the creators of the comic book character Superman deliberately modelled the "Man of Steel" on Jesus. This is a book I have no intention of reading (unless someone else wastes their money and makes a gift of it.) However, it has at least some evangelical clergy excited; not because they object to what would seem to be a heretical argument, but they see it as an exciting new way to attract young believers.
It is not a new idea. There are many web sites (such as this one from the Journal of Religion and Film) claiming parallels between Superman and Jesus were present throughout Superman:The Movie (1978).
Still, is it a realistic comparison?
- Superman's father was a scientist; Jesus's father was a god
- Superman's mother was married to his father; Jesus's mother cuckolded her husband.
- Superman was not born to a virgin; Jesus was.
- Superman's father died after sending him to Earth; Jesus's father is immortal
- Superman's home, Krypton, was destroyed; Jesus's home, Heaven, is eternal
- Superman was raised by adoptive parents; Jesus was raised by his birth mother
- Superman's super powers were because he was born on Krypton in an advanced civilization; Jesus's super powers were supernatural
- Superman's alter ego is a mild mannered reporter; Jesus's alter ego is a tyrannical deity (as part of a trinity)
- Superman wears a cape; Jesus wore a robe
- Superman wears tights; Jesus went commando.
- Superman is a fictional character; Jesus is ???
Next up to tap the wallets of Christians -- watch for an upcoming book suggesting parallels between Bruce Wayne / Batman and Saul / Paul.
- The Gospel according to the World's Greatest Superhero by Stephen Skelton.