“More powerful than a locomotive…”
He sure is. Comparing Superman’s strength to trains was an ideal thing in 1940’s. Trains at the time still had an allure. They were something to marvel at. Kids were fascinated by them. Having a train set was something every boy wanted.
Trains were still otherworldly strong beasts, they were the most popular mode of transportation for decades and the idea of a man being stronger than one was just an amazing idea.
Through the years trains became more and more common place and a children’s fascination with them started to wane. Oh sure kids still would love to gaze at intricately detailed train sets and trains still have devoted enthusiasts, but trains themselves began to become part of everyday life and started to lose their luster.
Yet they are still one of the perfect ways of demonstrating the strength the Man of Steel has and it’s a big way to put a lot of innocent lives in peril. So through his various incarnations Superman has had consistent run-in’s with them.
I decided to do this project when I started to consider all the encounters Superman has had with trains in his history.
Plus, in his latest interpretation, Man of Steel, he doesn’t go about saving passengers on a train, but rather locomotives are used strictly for destructive eye-candy. I thought it’s a pretty ironic change for the character and perhaps one reason why Henry Cavill’s Superman has not yet been so strongly embraced by fans – he just hasn’t saved a train yet.