Man of Steel trailer saves the bus

Warner Bros. has posted the first full-length trailer for its upcoming Superman reboot.

Man of Steel will depict a new Superman, one who more believably reflects the brooding unwillingness of a super-strong alien life form who is inadvertently adopted by humans. This is the Superman of DC’s New 52 comics line, which reinvents its entire superhero universe.

The film doesn’t keep everything from the new canon, of course. It wouldn’t be Hollywood if the studio actually adhered to source material. But the attitude of this new Supes is the really important part, and by all accounts they’ve got this one on the nose.

The film also includes a new version of the origin story which is closer, if not dead on in terms of the current comics canon, which was actually established prior to the New 52 in a novel called Birthright. The novel depicts Clark’s decision to take up the cape as a more reluctant process, and one born more of desperation and depression than a sense of honor or duty. Those are there, of course, instilled in him by his folksy parents, but mostly he wants to stop feeling sad and alone in a world that can never understand him.

This new trailer focuses our attention on part of Clark’s boyhood, and outlines the dangerous questions associated with the potential revelation of his powers.

There isn’t much here about where the adventure will be taking the character into adulthood. For example, we only catch a glimpse of the new Lois Lane, played by Amy Adams. Unfortunately, Lois will likely be one part of the story that Warner Bros. will not be changing along with the new source. The new Superman stories move Clark away from Lois, who no longer requires constant rescuing, and who has her own life away from Superman’s antics.

Her new role
is essentially as ‘the one that got away’ for Clark, which his real affections are now directed at Wonder Woman, which makes a lot more sense anyway. That change to the story was not made until after development on Man of Steel was already well under way, however, so unless they got some advance plans out of DC a couple years ago, it’s unlikely that this will be reflected in the script. It would be unlikely anyway, however, since movie-going audiences are so used to the Superman/Lois Lane relationship, there would be a bit of backlash, I think, if there was no Lois smooching in the film, but maybe I’m not giving them enough credit.

The film’s synopsis is thus:

In the pantheon of superheroes, Superman is the most recognized and revered character of all time. Clark Kent/Kal-El (Henry Cavill) is a young twenty-something journalist who feels alienated by powers beyond his imagination. Transported years ago to Earth from Krypton, a highly advanced, distant planet, Clark struggles with the ultimate question ‘Why am I here?’ Shaped by the values of his adoptive parents Martha (Diane Lane) and Jonathan Kent (Kevin Costner), Clark discovers having extraordinary abilities means making difficult decisions. When the world is in dire need of stability, an even greater threat emerges. Clark must become a Man of Steel, to protect the people he loves and shine as the world’s beacon of hope – Superman.

Man of Steel is directed by Zack Snyder and stars Henry Cavill, Amy Adams, Russell Crowe, Diane Lane, and Kevin Costner. The film remains on track to hit theaters June 13, 2013.