I have something to admit that will open me up to incredible ridicule, however it is important to get across the point of this particular entry. It’s not that I am now on Season 9 of an all out Netflix assault of watching Smallville – though that may very well be a close second. It’s that spending day after day experiencing the story of a young Clark Kent, knowing what he will eventually become, had a pretty profound effect on me. The embarrassing admission is… Smallville changed my life.
Imagine, if you will, you’re a little boy/girl (just to be fair) and your find yourself naked in a ditch with destruction happening all around you. Moments later, you come across two individuals (a man and a woman) who – without question – adopt you and care for you and raise you to become an amazing individual in your own right. As you grow, you begin to notice you can do certain things other people cannot. You can lift ten tons with one arm, or run from here to Cuba in three minutes. You never get hurt, you never get sick, your eyes shoot heat, you can hear a bird whistling in Central Park while standing in Pacific Beach, and you can see through shit. (Let’s not forget that one day you also discover – YOU CAN FLY!) In trying to love and protect you from harm, your adoptive parents go to extreme measures and forsake any semblance of a normal life together for the sake of simply providing a good life for their child. (Can you tell that I think of Johnathon and Martha Kent as just as big a hero as Supes? Well, if you can’t… I do. Parents are important people. Very, very important. Yeah, Superman had the power – but we have Jonathon and Martha to thank for the fact that he saves our asses every day. They raised him to be a good man.)
Now, along the way, life isn’t easy. Along with trying to keep up your super secret (Like how I did that? SUPER secret. Damn, I’m good.) you find yourself, week after week, up against a wacky foe of some sort. If it isn’t meteor infected bug boys or half-frozen weirdos who kill others by stealing their body heat – then it’s the teleporting hottie who has become obsessed with you. Add to that a bald rich guy who’s life you saved and consider one of your best friends, who is destined to become your greatest enemy. I believe Big Daddy Kane said it best when he said, “Pimpin Aint Easy.”
Speaking of… one of your other best friends (who also happens to be a hottie) is madly in love with you, while you only have eyes for the most beautiful and unattainable girl in school. And, even though you have saved their lives a hundred times over – they can never, ever know. You have to let them believe you are just a clumsy, bumbling idiot.
The story of Clark Kent/Kal El is one of the most beautifully heartbreaking hero stories ever. If you can get past the ridiculous prejudice that it is a comic book, and realize it is just as valid a form of story telling as a movie or a play – opera even – you’d see that Superman not only deserves the name, but the love and admiration that he receives. This is not his “home”, but he protects us and cherishes all life as if it were. He selflessly gives of himself by going up against outrageous obstacles, with no thought at all of reward. Even when things looks their blackest, and all around are ready to give up or take the easy way out, Supes remains in the fight – ready to save everyone.
I am inspired by this. It is a good philosophy, no matter how you look at it. Yes, he made mistakes along the way, and made decisions that cost him dearly. However, HE NEVER GAVE UP. He kept fighting, and all for the sake of making the world safe. All because he was one simple thing – good. This simple fact has given me an entirely new outlook on life. Once again, Superman has saved the day.
If you’re out there, Superman. Thank you.