Finding Superman’s Kryptonite

2 04 2011

We all remember Superman right?  He was that fictional character made popular by Detective Comics (later renamed DC Comics), radio, television, movies, newspaper and video games.  He was a tight wearing, butt kicking superhero the world had never seen before.

Superman is considered an American cultural icon.  In 1938, two guys living in Cleveland, Ohio created Superman(SM).  American writer Jerry Siegel and Canadian born American artist Joe Shuster.  They sold the character to Detective Comics in 1938.  Their creation, the SM character was distinctive in a red, blue and yellow costume with a big “S” emblazoned on his chest and complete with a red cape.  Superman may be credited with starting a generation of superhero’s who fought justice in their tights, or not.

SM was born Kal-El on the planet Krypton.  He was sent by rocket to Earth as an infant by his scientist father Jor-El just before Krypton’s destruction.  He landed and was discovered in Kansas by a farmer and his wife and raised on good old Mid-West values and named Clark Kent.  The name was actually derived by combining the names of two budding stars of the time Clark Gable and Kent Taylor.  As Clark grew older he lived among the humans and worked at the Daily Planet, a newspaper in his adopted town of Metropolis.  There he works with and falls in love with Lois Lane, a real talented reporter and quite a looker.  She has no clue he is SM for a very long time.

SM meanwhile (you can insert the cartoon voice and add “at the halls of justice” if you want) is honing his skills and powers.  His bag of bad guy kicking abilities include: superhuman strength, speed, stamina, intelligence, heat vision, x-ray vision and flight to name a few.  I think he was bullet proof too.  The Man of Steel as he was sometimes called was the protector of the citizens of Metropolis.  He was often found stopping wife beaters, lynch mobs and gangsters with morals unbecoming of good guys.  In a movie once he flew backwards to go back in time to save Lois, wow how romantic.  SM never killed villans, it wasn’t in him.  In fact in the 40’s it was written into his persona that if he ever did kill he would hang up his cape (and tights I would assume) and retire leaving the world in the hands of the other superheros like The Tick and his sidekick Arthur.

So SM is a great strong crime fighter with no flaws for endless young children to idolize and the citizens of Metropolis to cheer because he has no weaknesses, right?  Nope there is one thing that brings the mighty SM to his Knees…Kryptonite(insert the scream you hear at horror movies).

Kryptonite is mineral debris from Krypton that was transformed into radioactive material by the forces that destroyed the planet (I don’t make this stuff up).  Exposure to Kryptonite weakens SM.  There are actually four types of Kryptonite with Green being the most powerful and destructive.  Lex Luthor and Evil Batman knew this and used it to try to over power SM, foiled again.  Exposure to Kryptonite nullifies SM’s powers and immobilizes him with pain and nausea and emptiness.  Prolonged exposure to Kryptonite will kill him.

This is where you find out where I was going with all of this.  I am Superman in my family’s world.  I am from Earth and we live in Mattropolis(go with me here).  My Lois is named Jenny and works at the hospital instead of the paper but she is quite the looker.  I as SM of the family ward off evil in the forms of bullies, rude people, and telemarketers to protect the citizens of Mattropolis.  I am bulletproof and armed with thunder and lightning (the two guns im packing beneath my sleeves).  I don’t wear tights, Dockers and in the warmer months flippy floppies.

a pocket full of Kryptonite

Sadly my friends, I too have Kryptonite.  It has taken me 11 years to discover mine.  My Kryptonite has grown over time and there is only one version.  Mine is the absence.  Absence from my little girl.  Sydney went on spring break this year with her mother.  In all her 11 years we have never been apart for more than seven days.  It was a sad day when I dropped her off, we had stayed up late together.  Like SM I find myself sulking from the pain of absence, feeling nausea and I am quite certain if it were to last much longer it would kill me.

Thankfully as Lois, I mean Jenny pointed out, its temporary and she has been treating my symptoms.  Excited phone calls and stories of swimming with dolphins seem to reduce the side effects of my Kryptonite.  The soothing sound of her voice assures me she is safe outside of Mattropolis and each call brings her closer to home.

So all you Superman’s and Superwoman’s out there, what is your Kryptonite?  There will always be someone with a pocketful of Kryptonite (Spin Doctors reference).  Can we really let it defeat us and leave the world in the hands of The Tick (you really should google this, very funny superhero, I mean his sidekick Arthur dresses in a rabbit costume) and Shirtless Girl?




2 responses

30 03 2012

I know how you feel; I am Superman and my Kryptonite is sympathy. I can conquer any obstacle right up until someone starts feeling sympathetic for me. Then I break down into a hundred little pieces of Jen-shaped mush. =D

18 04 2012

part of what defines us and the great thing is our kids don’t see our Kryptonite

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