Man of Steel derived existential crisis… again.
It is really hard having something that means so much to you be a fictional thing. Like really hard. It’s really clear that I’m bordering on irrational, but when you come to rely emotionally that things that aren’t real, when you create an identity, a moral base and a lot of your life based on said fictional thing, it throws you for a serious loop when things don’t jive.
Loop, consider me thrown into you. And I don’t know why I bother. I don’t know why I need to care so much. All I know is that I’m still hurt, and it’s a very personal hurt. Like a family member has betrayed me and I don’t know how to look at them anymore. I can’t process it, how does someone so important to me suddenly change so much… and he’s not even real. Does that make me mentally ill? That a fictional thing can hurt me so badly? A thing not even in my control?
So that’s why I let go, because I can’t control it. But it keeps getting thrown in my face, and I can’t let it go… because I see it, I’m reminded of it… and honest to God, it haunts me. I feel betrayed all over again and I feel like I did that night when my dad found out I stole his money to buy comics and he beat me severely and made me tear up my comics and I sat in the closet huddled close to myself. Betrayed. Afraid. Alone.
And that’s the gamut of emotions I go through when I think of Man of Steel. I have withstood beatings for my love of comics. I’ve been yelled at, criticized, alienated… by my own parents. And this one thing that pretty much defines me, they have always discouraged. I wonder if this is how other fanboys feel when they feel their characters have been changed. Is it this deep? Does it strike to the core? Because this strikes to the core of who I am, and maybe I’m over thinking it and over feeling it. But here we are, 2:30 in the morning, and I’m still thinking about a stupid movie I haven’t seen in nearly 6 months.
And for what? Why does any of this matter? Who cares? Why do I need to care so much? Life goes on. I go to work, I pay bills, I have a girlfriend, I have friends… life goes on. And yet, this thing has hurt me. Really, really hurt me. And I can’t let it go. It’s there. I can’t dislodge it. I’m trying, maybe I’m not trying too hard, because I don’t let go of things, which is another of my many character flaws. Why won’t I let go? Why can’t I just learn to let things go?
I can feel it, you know? I can feel it in my chest. I feel it there. It sits there. I know the feeling, in my darkest moments, it comes back. I seldom have dark moments with others around, and maybe that’s the point. Maybe this isn’t about a corporate product, focus grouped and tested and marketed a certain way. Maybe this is just about the pain I’ve had in my life for over 20 years. Can it really be that simple?
So the takeaway point is: parents, treat your kids well. The second you beat them or tell them you don’t know what you did to get a crappy child like them is the second you lose their trust. It just gets all jumbly and fucked up and they latch onto fictional characters and hold onto them to the point of irrationality. Then the corporate owners of said fictional character will change the character to a point where your child’s brain will shatter and he’ll relive old hurts believing it to be a new hurt, when really, all of this is the same fucking hurt. Fuck. I think it’d be better if I was an alcoholic. Then I could just be in drunken stupor than elaborating on my pain for all of the internet to see.
All because Superman was a callous fuck in Man of Steel and I won’t get over it.
Fiction is power. Fiction is so much power.
I need Superman to not be flawed. I need him to be better than me, and I try to be better, I try to be a force for good. And there he goes, blowing up buildings, hurting people (inadvertently, but hurting them nonetheless), and finding an inelegant, flawed, human solution to a problem…
There he goes. Being me.
I don’t want to be me. I want to be better. I want to aspire.
There is nothing for me to aspire to. I need an inspiration to aspire to.
Clearly, I need to be more than I have been. I need to not be the 7 year old crying in the closet. The 9 year old who doesn’t understand why his mom is packing her stuff. The 12 year old who doesn’t understand why nobody likes him and thinks everyone hates him. The 18 year old who is afraid to death that he’s going to die alone. The 23 year old who is afraid to be an adult for real. The 27 year old who recognizes the flaws of his life and is afraid to really move forward in his life.
I need to be more than the 12 year old who saves his friends, only to hear his father tell him he should’ve let his friends die. I need to be more than the 30 year old, afraid of his own life, afraid of the people he wants to help, afraid of what he can do, afraid of what he is. I need to be more than the 33 year old, afraid of his heritage, afraid of the past coming back to haunt him, afraid of a man who was genetically bred to kill. Afraid of fighting. Too afraid to help others, only focused on hitting the man in front of him.
I found a way to move past my pain. I found a way to have a life. Have friends, fall in love, move out of my mom’s apartment, work with the greater public, decide to live with my girlfriend, move 5 hours south, decide to make myself better. I did all of this.
Is anyone else so deeply insecure? Does anyone else doubt themselves as much?
Superman is no longer what I need him to be. What do I do? What do I need now?
I need to know that good wins. I need to know that most people are good people. I need to know that I am a good person, that I do everything I can to hold myself to that. I need to believe in something beyond me, but I can’t believe in what I used to believe in. This is my great existential crisis. This is Thomas doubting. Along the way this year, I stopped being Christian too. I don’t know what to believe in, especially when the man who’s caused me so much torment in my life claims to have a direct line to God and Jesus and that he’s their favored son… when clearly, he isn’t. Maybe that’s what really broke me, when I sent him to the hospital. When I exercised power over him… only to have him sent back to me.
I feel like a tiny ant swept up in the river. I don’t control anything, and nobody really can help me. Do you see the little ant, as the river flows by? Could you? So tiny, against the raging river, would you even know to look?
Fuck you Zack Snyder. You don’t get what that character meant to me. To you, he’s just another plaything. He was an integral part of my life. You stripped him from me.
Okay, enough with this.