San Diego Comic-Con has come and gone, and what a blast it was! If you couldn’t make the trek, fear not: you can still savor the best of our Virgin Comics panels.
Comic Book Resources has posted a terrific overview of “The Spirit of the Superhero” panel, where comic legend and writer of the new Virgin Comics/Perspective Studios animated series, MBX, Grant Morrison riffed with bestselling author and Virgin Comics Chief Visionary Deepak Chopra about the palliative role of superheroes in uncertain times. Both notables drew parallels between popular comic book characters, like Superman and Batman, and spiritual icons, like Buddha and Jesus:
“Superman’s a secular, sci-fi attempt to create a picture of the higher being.” But, said Morrison, in Superman “we have made something that is capable of saving us.” Until Superman, Morrison pointed out, heroes were all soldiers or cowboys. Superman was something vastly different. And “Superman is a symbol from the 20th century that speaks to the 21st century,” he said. Not only is he physically and mentally superior, but “Superman has the compassion of the Buddha,” said Morrison.
The connection between Superman, Batman, Buddha, and Jesus, according to Chopra, is thematic: “The theme is redemption. And resurrection. And death.” “In order to get yourself to a higher level of existence,” he said, “you have to let something die.” Chopra went on to explain the inherent duality in all life–citing the final scene in Christopher Nolan’s “The Dark Knight” as an example of how all things need their opposite. “If you had only creativity and evolution, you would have no universe,” he said. “If you had only destructive forces, the universe would dissipate into a black hole.” Chopra clarified, “you need the tension between the two forces.”
“Jesus is the redeemer,” he added. “So is Buddha.” He said the message of the superhero is “keep winning, but don’t win.” The struggle is everything.
To read the full article click here. To learn more about Buddha, the comic book adaptation of Deepak Chopra’s New York Times bestseller, go here.
After you’re done reading about the spirit of the superhero, be sure to watch the panel featuring Stan Lee and Grant Morrison: