Superhero Movie Destruction

Even though every superhero movie brings with it a certain amount of destruction of property, usually in major cities, we became really curious about the damage done and lives lost when we saw the sheer amount of devastation caused by the end of Man of Steel. There was such outrcy from the destruction in that movie that Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice even has a few lines to let the audience know that certain moments of disaster had little to no casualties.

Now this consciousness of superhero destruction, or even destruction by cinematic disasters or movie monsters like Godzilla, has caused some genuine thought as to whether or not how we think about the destruction in superhero movies may make us more aware of how we would handle real-life disasters with the same level of devastation. Find out how the real world might handle superhero movie destruction after the jump.

Here’s “Who’s Gonna Pay for All This Superhero Destruction” from the PBS Idea Channel:

If you’re just looking for a simple answer, there isn’t one. The video cites several instances of real life disasters, from Titanic to Hurricane Katrina as examples of how we might handle the level of life loss and destruction that would be incurred from a superhero’s battle with a supervillain and his army. The aftermath isn’t easy to deal with, and there would likely be endless red tape and people affected by these events for years to come.

For me, what’s interesting to think about when considering the amount of damage done by superhero movies is the level to which we are willing to accept loss of life and damage to a city before we start really taking notice of it. That’s why superhero movies usually go out of their way to show you people getting saved, so you’re not thinking about all the ones who are still dying. The video talks about maximum acceptable loss and how we start thinking practically about what we’re seeing unfold when that’s exceeded. That reminds me of what The Joker says about chaos and anarchy in The Dark Knight:

Nobody panics when things go according to plan, even if the plans are horrifying. If I tell the press that tomorrow a gangbanger will get shot, or a truckload of soldiers will get blown up, nobody panics. But when I say one little old mayor will die, everyone loses their minds! Introduce a little anarchy, you upset the established order, and everything becomes chaos.

When damage is caused that we’re not used to seeing everyday, or even every week, that’s when people start getting bent out of shape. And I think that mentality has been transferred, albeit with a higher tolerance for maximum acceptable loss. Since these are fictional scenarios, does how we think about superhero destruction really matter? Maybe it does if that’s how we consider disasters of this scale in real life. What do you think?

Don’t forget, there’s a chance we might learn what the aftermath of superhero destruction would be like since NBC has a developing series called Powerless on the way that will follow the employees of an insurance company who have to deal with the consequences of that kind of damage.

Cool Posts From Around the Web: