Superman and His Reporter, Lois Lane

Lois Lane

Lois Lane

The Lois Lane in the most recent Superman movie, Man of Steel, has received largely positive reviews.

It’s gotten hard for me to watch movies about reporters, especially reporters who write for newspapers, because they always get a lot of things wrong.

The worst is when female reporters are shown sleeping with their sources and then writing about them–unethical behavior that’s almost never called out in the context of the film.

But then there are other more minor problems as well. For example, while I have not seen Man of Steel, I have read that Lois, who is not a TV journalist, wears high heels. There may be women reporters who wear high heels, but I’m not sure why one ever would. Editors, sure. Editors usually stick to their offices and other business environments.

Reporters, not so much. In fact, most reporters I know wear crummy, inexpensive shoes, because we tend to ruin them a lot. I’d never want to wear expensive, beautiful shoes into a house destroyed by fire. I wouldn’t want to wear them wading through a mound of burned corn to talk to a firefighter. I certainly wouldn’t want to wear them during a flood situation in which the ground is covered with water(?) of dubious origin. I wouldn’t want to wear them traipsing across a mile-wide airfield to get to a plane wreck. And none of those situations is one that you’re going to know about in advance.

And even in Metropolis, would you want to wear heels while catching up with a source in a scuzzy alley? How about in the subway? I certainly wouldn’t want to be in heels while getting chased around by a trio of violent supervillains.

If nothing else, Lois would bring an extra set of shoes to work in the back seat of her car–either cheap and disposable, or waterproof with rubber soles, so that they can be hosed off later.

My other problem with movie and TV journalists is that they almost never have notebooks or recording devices. Real reporters will have one or the other, or something similar–a laptop, an iPad, a smartphone with a recording app. We’re not interviewing you for fun, although it is fun, most of the time. And we do enough interviews that we’re not gonna remember what you said unless it’s recorded somehow.

Unless a reporter is specifically noted as having an eidetic memory, he or she should have a device open and working at all times with all interview subjects.

Have you seen Man of Steel yet? What did you think of Lois? Did she ever have a recording device/notebook?

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