Understanding Superman’s Appeal

One of the things that has longed fascinated me about Superman is his enormous popularity outside of America. Just recently I learned that the 1951 film Superman and the Mole Men had a cinematic release in Thailand.  The images reproduced here are from a Bangkok cinema.



I tried to grapple with Superman’s international appeal in a recent piece for the Smithsonian Institution’s What It Means to Be American website. I am still thinking about this issue. But meantime the piece is here (not my choice of heading):

It’s a Bird! It’s a Plane! It’s a Positive Symbol of American Power!