In the 2013 film Man of Steel, one of the most controversial moments revolved around the death of Superman’s father, Jonathan Kent. Unlike the comics, where the death of Pa Kent had a profound impact on Clark’s life, the film version portrayed a drastically different take. This scene, even after so many years of release, still now is a topic of debate amongst fans.
Henry Cavill in Man of SteelThe Death of Jonathan Kent in Comics vs Film
In the comics, Superman has had to grapple with the loss of a loved one, which is a common theme among many heroes in the DC Universe, including Batman and Green Lantern. The death of Jonathan Kent in the comics serves a greater purpose, teaching Clark that no matter how powerful he is, he cannot save everyone, even those he loves.
Pa Kent death scene in Comics
A heart attack, a common occurrence that takes the lives of thousands every day, serves as a reminder that Clark is not a god, but a hero with limitations.
While in Man of Steel, Jonathan Kent’s death was portrayed in a very different light. In the film, Jonathan Kent encouraged Clark to keep his powers hidden from the world, leading to a moment where he refused to let Clark save him from a tornado.
This was a departure from the comics where Pa Kent’s death was a result of a heart attack, triggered by the stress of a missile attack from the villain Brainiac.
Pa Kent’s Death in Man of Steel: A Divide Among Fans
Many fans have shared their opinion that this scene did not make any sense. They believe Pa Kent’s death in the comics was profound and taught Clark a lesson whereas in Man of Steel he could have saved his dad’s life very easily. A very similar argument was made by an user recently on twitter.
The tweet has assembled a lot of people who think the same and some users even showed their agreement in the replies of this tweet.
But there is an another side of the debate too. Some users did not agree with the above statement and pointed out that they scene was different than the comics and still was more fitting into the narrative.
In the comics Pa Kent’s death taught Clark that no matter how much powerful he is, he cannot save everyone. And in this narrative the death by heart attack seems to be fitting. But in Man of Steel, Clark’s lesson was a bit different than the comics. In the 2013 film Pa Kent wanted Clark to not show his powers to people as he knew that the world was not ready for people like him to come to light.
Pa Kent death scene in Man of Steel
He believed the knowledge of existence of meta humans would scare the world. He was afraid that the world would not accept Clark because of his powers. During his death he made Clark understand how much he feared that.
Clark too respected and trusted his father’s decision, which pushed him into being isolated and not revealing his powers to anyone. Pa Kent’s death taught Clark and made him believe that humans are not ready for him to reveal something so drastic and this is the reason that later on when humans treat him like a threat, he understands it and is not offended or angry about it.
Some supporters of the comic version countered this presenting various scenarios and options:
Among defending and opposing Zack Snyder‘s Man of Steel, there were some fans who even stated that the comic version didn’t make sense either
Among the heated debate, some users even praised and showed their support for Snyder and stated his vision is not something people get
The death of Jonathan Kent in Man of Steel is a controversial topic that still sparks debates among fans even after so many years of its release. While some fans believe that the Man of Steel version was a departure from the comics, others argue that it fit the narrative of the film.
Regardless of the varying opinions, it is clear that both versions of the death of Pa Kent serve as important lessons for Clark, teaching him about his limitations and the impact of his actions on those he loves.
Ultimately, the debate surrounding the death of Jonathan Kent is a testament to the depth of the Superman story and the passion of its fans.