THE BLOG

Superman, Batman and Spiderman Are So Not American

31/05/2013 17:37 BST | Updated 31/07/2013 10:12 BST

Go watch the Superman making-of featurette. Henry Cavill, the actor playing Superman, is English. I know you know this, but still, it's wonderfully unnerving to hear him talk. He went to a boarding school in Buckinghamshire. He did prep. Superman was nurtured not on an alien planet, but in the Home Counties. He knows what Wham Bars are and how to tie a real bow tie. And - most importantly - he thinks America drives on the wrong side.

Once you understand this, you can see how he is driven to save Americans. He pities them for their high waisted jeans and rampant obesity. He is saddened by the fact they play rugby dressed in motorcycle body armour. He winces when they spell neighbourhood wrong.

This is what director Zack Snyder must be tapping in to. His "super-motivation." After all, the big question is why does he do it? Why doesn't he just let the planet (i.e. America) be destroyed? Why does he lift the school bus out of the water?

The answer? It's because he is English. Truthfully, he wants to take that school bus full of damp kids to Chorleywood, give them some tea made with a teabag which has no string and paper square attached to it and then teach them to catch a ball without the help of a giant glove. Because..that's just so much better. He knows that whoever invented the giant ball-catching-glove i.e. "mitt" was simply a cheating malco who wanted to join in with the boys who could actually catch a ball. Superman has no need for a mitt. And neither, thinks he, do the children of America.

I can only pray that when the Justice League movie is made, they are allowed to drop their accents in the secret meetings. Spiderman (Andrew Garfield - English) will be allowed in as a special dispensation. Holographic football league tables will spring up around them and they will demand brown sauce as they eat fry ups and reminisce about Philip Schofield. Batman (Up till now, Christian Bale - Welsh)

Then, when they are stylishly late, they will casually save America and then immediately proclaim modestly that it was "no trouble at all".

In the final shot, as the Justice League walk to camera while something huge explodes behind them, instead of moodily looking forward and sucking in their cheekbones, they will jump a little and look at each other as if to say "Goodness me, what a lot of fuss."

Because they can. Because they are Superheroes. Because, as it actually, categorically true - they are only pretending to be American.

But wait - in movies it cuts both ways. American actors can also emulate British characters very well. It's a prestigious thing to do. When I was casting All Stars, Clooney - desperate to be in a kids' dance movie - called me most days, even after Mark Heap officially had the part. I had quite a few very cross messages about how much better ER was than "f***ing Green Wing."

But enough about "Clooney Jones", the character actor from Detroit.

The fact is that Johnny Depp played a mental dreadlocked English pirate, an English ghost and then a killer hairdresser from Bow, and Renee Zelwegger played a chubby, duvet wearing woman. Excellent roles and great performances but isn't it funny how it's quirky to pretend to be English and super to pretend to be American.

Well, here's to you Henry! Damn good effort, Superman.

PS If you happen to be American and are cross about what I've written, please forgive me. We've been having a tough time of late and are simply looking for things to be proud of. By next year our recession will be over, all our problems will be gone, and we won't need any more articles like this.