Kris Weberg | October 11, 2004
In the last 24 hours, Jacques Derrida and Christopher Reeve have passed away. In very different ways, both were, to me, heroes.

Both bore up under tragic circumstances, Derrida battling pancreatic cancer, and Reeve making an astonishing recovery in body from a spinal column injury. Neither gave up hope.

Reeve's fight for stem cell research, his optimism and resolve that he would walk again, inspired us. I don't call him Superman because of the role he played in 1978, but because of the man he was all his life.

Derrida was the last of the thinkers of '68, fought apartheid in South Africa, and, like it or not, posed a serious and lasting challenge to the way we think of reading, in all its different forms. He, too, believed in championing life. As he once said, "I am uneducable regarding the necessity of death."

I will miss them both.

Todd Brotsch | October 11, 2004
"But most will remember this sad day as the day the proudest, most noble man they ever knew finally fell. For those who loved him -- one who would call him husband, one who would be his pal, or those who would call him son -- this is the darkest day they could ever imagine. They raised him to be a hero: to know the value of sacrifice, to know the value of life. And for those who served with Superman in the protection of all life comes the shock of a failure: the weight of being too late to help. For a city to live, a man had given his all and more. But it's too late. For this is the day that a Superman died."

- Superman #75, 1992 (written by Dan Jurgens)


Scott Horowitz | October 11, 2004
Nice tribute Todd. I have to say that when I hear about most celebrity deaths, I am usually unfased. Everyone dies, it is part of the life cycle. But, when I heard about this one I was definitely upset.

Christopher embodied what Superman stood for. When you mention Superman, which actor do you think of? George Reeves, Dean Cain, Tom Welling... the first one that comes to my mind is always Christopher Reeve. Nobody has captured a comic book figure on screen as he did.

Losing Reeve is a tragedy to the world. Hopefully his fight for stem cell research will not be lost with his passing. Remember what Superman stood for, "Truth, Justice, and the American Way."

Todd Brotsch | October 11, 2004
Which steward of the House of El one identifies is most likely tied to which version exisited when you were a child.

Be it the original radio shows, the first Fleischer Studios cartoons, George Reeves, Superfriends, Christopher Reeve, live action Superboy shows, Lois & Clark, The Batman/Superman Adventures, or the current batch of Smallville or Justice League/(unlimited) cartoons.

Same holds true for the Mantle of the Bat: Adam West, Michale Keaton, Val Kilmer, George Clooney, the Cartoon episodes, or Christian Bale. Not to mention the different Bonds throught the ages.

To that end, I find that Chris holds a special place in my being.

He made us belive that a man could fly.

Lori Lancaster | October 12, 2004
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Anna Gregoline | October 12, 2004
I felt bad for him though, that he played Superman and then had that happen to him, so that of course the irony was constantly referenced. It also placed him squarely in the "Super Crip" category that so many disabled people are loathe to be in, although he probably would have landed there anyway, considering his celebrity status.

Kris Weberg | October 12, 2004
More than making me believe he could fly, Reeve did something even more amazing -- he got me to believe that Clark Kent could really fool everyone by changing his clothes and putting on glasses. If you get a chance, check out his use of body language in the Superman movies. It's an amazing physical and voice performance.

Jackie Mason | October 12, 2004
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Todd Brotsch | October 12, 2004
Of course, the scene In The Movie, right after Kal's interview with Lois, Clark then c omes to pick her up for dinner. As Lois goes to put on a coat, Clark stands there, then instantly he straightens up, drops the voice and instantly it's Kal-El talking, not Clark. Simply amazing.

He, Dick Donner, and Tom Mankiewicz created a movie and image that was light years ahead of it's time, still standing up to criticizim today.

Lori Lancaster | October 12, 2004
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Jackie Mason | October 12, 2004
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Scott Hardie | October 14, 2004
Of the many Supermans, I always identified most with the comic book version. Reeve was just an actor playing him, albeit playing him very well. My favorite Reeve film was "Somewhere in Time," but it's not for those viewers with a low tolerance for the ridiculous.

I'm impressed by the academic community standing up for Derrida.

Steve West | October 15, 2004
Street Smart, Noises Off, Deathtrap. If you haven't seen 'em - get 'em. That would be my Christopher Reeve trifecta.

Kris Weberg | October 15, 2004
Hey, I can't stand time paradoxes -- ask me why I hate Donnie Darko -- but Somewhere in Time is still cool, despite the watch.

And Deathtrap is interesting at least in part because Reeve was certainly trying to break the "typecasting" of Superman by playing...well, I won't wreck the twist....

Oh, and someone in my department actually circulated a genuine retrospective of the man's work as, and I quote, "a curative" to the vicious and uninformed Times obit. Heh. Derrida just came up in a conversation I had today, come to think -- and it wasn't about his death.

Anna Gregoline | October 15, 2004
Time paradoxes are frustrating to me too, Kris. So utterly preposterous. I can't suspend my disbelief.

Kris Weberg | October 15, 2004
This is why I loved Twelve Monkeys. Single, absolutely determinate timeline where you can't change the past. I don't like multiple-timelines as much, mainly because they're unduly confusing -- "You're from which future, again?"

Reminds me, too, of a really cool Larry Niven short story called "All the Myriad Ways," about the social consequences when an infinity of parallel Earths are discovered.

Anna Gregoline | October 15, 2004
Twelve Monkeys IS an awesome movie. Why don't I own that one?

I always just think that a single person moving through time would change all the life on this planet as we know it. The world has too many infinite possibilities not to have everything change with one small poke.

Kris Weberg | October 15, 2004
Again, why I like Twelve Monkeys..... [SCREECH]

This thread should really be for Christopher and Jacques. I'm starting a time travel thread in the future towards which we're all traveling.

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