Rabu, 22 Juni 2011

Superman Fans at Jakarta Globe

Hari ini, harian online JAKARTA GLOBE menampilkan tentang para 'Super-Fans'.

Indonesia Throws Birthday Bash as Superman Turns 73
Katrin Figge | June 22, 2011

New members are always welcome to expand the 100-strong fan club (Photo courtesy of Superman Fans of Indonesia.)

At the grand old age of 73, Superman is certainly no novice when it comes to being a superhero, but he seems to have lost none of his power to mesmerize readers.

First published in June 1938, the Superman comic series is reaching a new milestone this week, celebrating the 73rd birthday of the baby from the planet Krypton whose super strength, X-ray vision and gravity-defying antics made him one of the most beloved characters in the history of comic books.

The Indonesian fan base of the DC Comics superhero is ready to celebrate. Members of the Superman Fans of Indonesia community — along with anyone else with a fascination for the man in red and blue — will gather tonight and on Saturday at the Subtitles cinema in South Jakarta for the group’s first Superman celebration.

Dani Dewanto, co-owner of Subtitles, a small cinema with private viewing rooms and an extensive DVD collection, said he was happy to provide the space for the celebrations.

“One of our missions is to help all kinds of communities grow, especially those who show interest in movies, comics and any other form of art,” he said. “This June is dedicated to the Superman Fans of Indonesia community.”

Together with the community’s founders, they have come up with a colorful program.

“[Thursday night] we have the official Superman birthday celebration,” Dani said. “There will be a birthday cake and of course, Superman himself — rather, someone wearing the full outfit — and we hope that other superheroes like Batman, Spider-Man and Iron Man will join the festivities as well.”

The party continues on Saturday afternoon with an exhibition of collectors’ items, an auction and, of course, a screening of the Superman movies — all for Rp 25,000 ($3), including popcorn and a soft drink.

Ryo Diposayoga, co-founder of Superman Fans of Indonesia, said this was the community’s first attempt at organizing a celebration on this scale. His own fascination with the “Man of Steel” can be traced back to his childhood. Ryo saw his first Superman movie, starring Christopher Reeve, when he was 5 years old and has been a fan ever since.

“I actually believed that men could really fly,” he said. “As a child, I simply liked the color of his costume, and even today, red and blue remain my favorite colors.”

As he grew older, Ryo became an avid reader of the comic series and soon began to collect everything and anything related to his favorite superhero. Today, he has hundreds of items, kept in a special room at his house.

“Just like the other members of the community, I have Superman action figures, statues, comic books and movies,” he said. The collection doesn’t end there, though: the 35-year-old also counts T-shirts, shoes, belts, rings, watches and collectors’ cards among his precious possessions.

A couple years ago, Ryo and a few friends decided to form the Superman Fans of Indonesia community as a way to gather together a group of people with similar interests. The community quickly grew to around 100 local members, with almost 900 members on Facebook. At least 30 of them regularly meet to share their Superman-related news.

“We usually hang out once a week at the house of one of our members, to sell, buy or swap items from our collections, visit toy fairs or go hunting for Superman stuff together,” he said.

Ryo hopes that more people will sign up at Saturday’s celebration to become part of the community.

When asked why he preferred Superman over other superheroes, Ryo said that even though Superman was from another planet, he was human-like and easy to relate to.

In order to conceal his true identity, Superman works as the mild-mannered reporter Clark Kent, only changing into his costume when he sees injustice and ventures out to set things right.

“Despite his superpowers, Superman has human problems like everyone else,” Ryo said. “Sometimes, he has trouble in the office or with his love life, disagreements with his parents. Plus, he doesn’t wear a mask like many of the other superheroes.”

Dani said many of Subtitles’ customers — most of them aged in their 20s and 30s — showed a great interest in Superman movies, so he was optimistic that the event would be a success.

“Many people ask about the old Superman films, the one from 1978 starring Christopher Reeve, and the [1950s television series The Adventures of Superman] with George Reeves,” he said.

“They remember Superman from their childhood,” Dani added. “Superman was their first exposure to a superhero — and who doesn’t want to be a superhero?”

Superman Birthday Celebration
Thursday, from 7 p.m.
Saturday, from 5 p.m.
Subtitles cinema
Dharmawangsa Square
Jl. Dharmawangsa VI - IX
South Jakarta
Tel. 021 7278 8336

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