“It is so on the nose that anyone who has not caught on that Superman is a Christ figure, you think, ‘Who else could it be referring to?’” our favorite pop theologist, Steve Skelton, tells The AP. Skelton is the author of The Gospel According to the World’s Greatest Superhero.
Previews for Superman Returns have done little to discourage such comparisons. One poster shows Superman, striking a godlike pose, as he surveys Earth from above. And, as The AP article observes, a trailer for the film “shows the hero with his eyes closed as the voice of his father — Marlon Brando’s, courtesy of 1978’s Superman — tells him he was sent to Earth because humans ‘lack the light to show the way. … For this reason,’ continues the voice, ‘I have sent them you, my only son.’”
But not everyone is buying it. Amy Pedersen, who’s writing her doctoral thesis at UCLA on comic books, calls the comparison “a misrecognition,” noting that Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster were inspired by the story of Moses and the golem of Jewish folklore.