Ed Driscoll

That Was Then, This Is Now

Superman Returns is, not surprisingly, being left in the dust at the box office this weekend by the second Pirates of the Caribbean movie. But it’s still worth reading what James Lileks has to say about its writers’ intentional truncation of the Man of Steel’s “Truth, Justice and the American Way” catchphrase:

As it turns out, however, the omission was intentional. “The American Way” sounds Krypto-fascist. The movie’s authors are the usual moderns, serenely above rude jingo pride: “We were always hesitant to include the term ‘American way’ because the meaning of that today is somewhat uncertain,” said co-writer Michael Dougherty. “I think when people say ‘American way,’ they’re actually talking about what the ‘American way’ meant back in the ’40s and ’50s, which was something more noble and idealistic.”

Ah. Well, in the ’40s, the American Way included incinerating German cities, nuking Japan, installing occupying armies and imposing our form of government