WARNING: Spoilers ahead! Do not continue reading until you have seen Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, or just don’t care about spoilers!
Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice is a polarizing movie, to say the least. As of this writing, the Rotten Tomatoes critics score is sitting at an..erm…28%. While the audience score is a little more favorable, 72%, it’s safe to say many people have some serious issues with this movie.
We can go into the dirt and muk and nitpick every little detail, as countless other blogs and reviews have been, but I want to take one scene in particular and shine the spotlight on it. I want to give my take, right or wrong, on what I thought was the most powerful scene in the movie.
This scene, you ask? When Superman calls out to Batman to save Martha, his Mother. This was obviously a huge turning point in the whole Batman v Superman dynamic, as the titular “v” was turned into an “&”. I’ve seen some vitriol on the internet about the fact it was too cheesy and convenient that both their Mother’s names just happened to be Martha. However, I believe it’s much more than that. I think this is more than Bruce Wayne dealing with the loss of his parents and his chance for redemption by saving Superman’s. I believe this also is the moment that Bruce Wayne, The Dark Knight of Gotham, realizes that Superman is more than just some God figure, but an actual “Human” who is not above the worldly ties that bind so much of us throughout our lives.
When he was holding the Kryptonite Spear and was about to deliver the final blow, he experienced the pain and vulnerability of this Man of Steel who, up until that point, seemed nigh unstoppable.
We all have our own vulnerabilities and insecurities and that is why we deal so much, in popular fiction, with characters unable to achieve their ultimate goal because of those they love. How many times have we seen a loved one captured, which in turn forces our protagonist to act out of character or against the benefit of all? How many times have we seen a villain, so determined to rule the day (!), turn because of a lingering string still playing inside their almost frozen heart.
We are creatures of emotion and are tied down by the things that we hold dear, and those are the things that define us.
I thought back to my Mother. One of the most important people in my life, and what I would do in a similar situation. I would do all I could to save her, plain and simple. I would move heaven and hell to protect the woman who literally gave me life. Though I may fail miserably, oh what a blaze of glory I would go down with.
Or my wife? My brother? My Father? My sister? The list could go on for days because I love those who helped me get to the point where I am hitting these keys writing this for the internet to read.
We all have something or someone to fight for, and that is a beautiful thing.
This is what Batman saw, maybe for the first time, for Superman. He needed to save his Mother, the one who showed him the ways of our home that is now his.
In that instant, Batman saw so much about himself and his supposed foe, that his worldview shifted on its axis. It was a moment so simple, yet so complex for both of our heroes.
They finally had common ground to stand on. The Son of Krypton and The Bat of Gotham, for the first time, saw eye to eye.
This concept also feeds into the quote that was written over Superman’s faux-grave in Metropolis.
“If you seek his Monument – look around you.”
While this clearly alludes to Superman being remembered by those of us knowing we are here because of him, this quote, originally inscribed on the grave of English Architect Christopher Wren, can mean so much more.
To truly understand and know someone, look at who they have impacted. Look at who matter to them and the mark they have made. This is what defines a person. Whether you are from Earth or Krypton, you become YOU by your actions and by those you care for.
In this moment, Bruce saw this. He didn’t see an invincible man or a threat, but a son. A son that he once was, and truly will always be. A son that needed to do all he could to save those who mean everything to him.
That, my friends, is what it means to be a hero.
“You know what really boggles my mind?”
“The concept of this whole “beginning and ending” thing.”
“What do you mean?”
“What I mean is that the concept of beginnings and endings are all relative and when you really think about it, don’t stand up to reason.”
“For example, let’s take Little Red Riding Hood. The story begins with Little Red Riding Hood being told to stay on the path and don’t stray, and ends with the wolf plan’s being foiled. Yet, what led us to that point? What came after?”
“I guess another story?”
“Exactly! Little Red Riding Hood lived a life before the famous story, and, hopefully, long after. These concepts of start and finish are bookmarks we have artificially created to tell a specific tale.”
“All that seems like common sense though? Of course there is a start and finish. Things begin and then things end. Everyone knows that.”
“Of course they do, it’s easy to apply those labels to a story that is broken down for you by the bindings of some hardcover or the tolerance of some bard. What I’m really trying to get at is the concept of life and death and our perception of loss and sorrow.”
“John…I’m not ready to talk about this.”
“Sam…It’s been three long years and I can count the amount of times I’ve seen you in that time on one hand. You are my brother and my best friend. I won’t give up on you and I want to help you.”
“I’ve tried. I’ve done all I can and nothing will ease the pain. I’ve seen psychiatrists, talked to our family, and so much more and I keep getting taken back to that one moment…”
“Sam. That’s the problem.”
“You are trying to forget and move on. However, there is no way you will ever recover from the love of your life passing away.”
“Are you fucking kidding me? What kind of game are you playing!?”
“No game. All I’m trying to do is…”
“I don’t need this shit. Fuck you and Fuck this. I’m out of here.”
What fucking nerve? Are you kidding me?
Who does John think he is coming in here and talking to me about Little Red Riding Hood and wanting to make my life better? What has he ever lost in his life? How much pain could be earned from living off our parent’s money and smoking the days away?
I’ve been doing so well too.
I leave the café and begin walking the same walk Claire and I used to walk before…well…
For the first time in…I can’t even remember…I think about before the accident. Before the phone call at 4:23am. Before all the sirens and questioning looks and the flat line of my wife’s now still heart.
I see her face. I see her smiling beautiful face with her eyes that are slightly offset. I see her infamous top bun that she was so damn proud of. I look back to our engagement, the moment I knew my life was complete. I begin to look beyond the circumstances that shattered my very existence and begin to see the larger story.
Damn, John, how did you do that?
I was too blinded by rage to see what he was getting at. Life isn’t defined by a single story but an entire library. For these past three years, I’ve been reading the same book over and over again and have been missing out on all this world has to offer.
I know what I need to do now.
“I want to apologize for before. I was completely out of line and couldn’t see that you were just trying to help me.”
“You have nothing to apologize for. I just care so much about you and hate seeing you like this. I’m just trying any and every angle I can.”
“Our lives were so amazing together and there are so many incredible moments that will last with me forever. My life isn’t defined by her death, it’s just one story. It doesn’t end here.”
“All I’ve been seeing is her dying over and over again. It’s not a way to live. I’ve always assumed that was the end of her, but the truth is that she is always with me. From a walk we used to take in the park, to the dairy aisle where she was the sole suspect in the murder of 30-some milk jugs, her memories transcend her…her…”
“They transcend all of us. Claire is not gone, she is all around us. Though we see death as an end, it is only another point in this crazy journey we are all taking. One that never truly ends. These stories of our lives are what WE make of them. They are not defined by simple boundaries but by ourselves. That’s all I was trying to get you to see. She may have passed on, but she is never gone, and her story never ends.”
I look at him in silence, fully grasping what his words mean.
Her story is now my story.
While her body couldn’t withstand the stress of a drugged out teenager behind a wheel, her soul always will.
Her beautiful soul touched so many in this world and we all will take the torch to keep her fire alive.
I will never move on from this or forget about her. She is, and forever will be, everything that I am and strive to be. She is my inspiration and the reason I wake every morning. There is no reason that should have ever changed.
We are conditioned to believe that everything must start and stop, live and die, begin and end, but the truth is a much more wonderful thing.
Time is relative and the constraints we place on ourselves arbitrary.
We are the masters of our tale, and Claire, for me, the words.
By. Adam Bankhurst
Back in 1993, when a young Steve Ells had a dream to create a burrito with integrity, I find it hard to believe he knew what an impact his creation would have on the world.
More specifically, my world.
I feel comfortable saying, without a shadow of a doubt, I am one of Chipotle’s biggest fans and supporters.
I don’t say this lightly either.
I have lived and breathed this Mexican masterpiece ever since my first enlightening experience back in 2004. I vividly remember hearing murmurs and rumors of this new burrito and taco place that everyone was raving about. For whatever reason, I pictured a high-class, sit-down Mexican restaurant. Even from my first introduction, I already held it to a high standard.
When I first walked in to my first Chipotle in Cleveland, OH, I was blown away. My first meal was three chicken tacos, and from there on, I knew I’d found love.
By. Adam Bankhurst
I know that it comes without fail every year, but it never seems to become easier.
Winter represents so much more than snow and plummeting temperatures. It is a sign of change. It is Mother Nature dictating that what we’ve come accustomed to in these past few months is suddenly over.
Ever since the accident, life just hasn’t been the same. I knew exactly what I was getting into, but I could not stop. It’s as if I was watching my life in slow motion and was a passive viewer instead of in full control.
By: Adam Bankhurst
Wake up. Hit snooze.
Wake up again. Get out of bed.
I don’t know what it is about those nine minutes, but I thank the heavens each and every day for them. It’s such a small, negligible addition to my slumber, but waking up knowing I have another nine minutes of no responsibility is surprisingly refreshing.
As I get up and continue my cookie cutter day, I look forward to moments similar to the infamous “snooze.” These are sprinkled throughout the next 16 or so hours until I am welcomed back into my way-too comfortable bed. They break up an otherwise monotonous repetition that never seems to really change.
Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I dislike my life or anything. I just feel as if I’m stuck.
Hello, world, Adam Bankhurst here.
Who am I, you ask?
Simply put, I am 26-year old trying to make his way on this crazy place we call Earth.
Why should I care?
As with each and every one of you, I’ve experienced my fair share of ups and downs getting to where I stand today.
With these peaks and valleys, however, I have never stopped living and experiencing all this world has to offer. One philosophy I’ve always lived by is that time never stops to ponder its past decisions, and neither should we.
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