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Supernatural, Superman (Stull)

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Christopher Reeve as a conflicted Clark Kent in "Superman: The Movie."
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OKLAHOMA CITY – While watching Superman: The Movie (1978) on the morning of Labor Day, along with members of my family, I was also on my smartphone, scrolling through Twitter, looking for comments being made about Twin Peaks: The Return, which had concluded with the series finale the night before.

Interestingly, the reason I thought to watch Superman was because I was in the middle of reading Alvin Schwartz’s fascinating autobiography An Unlikely Prophet, where the one-time Superman and Batman cartoon writer (1940’s-50’s era) is tracked down by a Tibetan tulpa who tells him that he has unwittingly created a Superman tulpa of his own. (I should note that the notion of tulpas has entered the popular consciousness in a way I did not fully understand - at least until today.

And in the past 24 hours or so, a friend of mine suggested that President Donald Trump, with his uncle's links to the papers of Nikola Tesla, seized by FBI agents after Tesla's death in 1943, is a tulpa himself, having been created in that spooky, 1945-46 time period. That's one I'm gonna let just hang out there ... ).

We were at the point in the movie where Superman (Christopher Reeve) has a date with Lois Lane (Margot Kidder) and he takes her flying over Metropolis, at night. Of course she has a scheduled date with Clark Kent as well, but this experience with Superman is just blowing Lois’s mind.

Soon after Superman takes off, Clark knocks on Lois’s apartment door and the dazed Daily Planet reporter answers it. Clark reminds her of their date and Lois goes to her room for a moment. It is that moment where Clark is standing in front of a mirror and the camera is focusing on that position, showing Lois’s bedroom door, I looked at the TV screen and then down at my smartphone screen and realize I am looking at the very same image on BOTH screens.

I was shocked. The Tweet essentially said, with an accompanying GIF of this particular scene: "It's like that time Clark Kent debated on whether he was going to tell Lois Lane that he was really Superman." I was too stunned by the synchronistic nature of the event to pay much attention to the context of the Tweet. Still, it was eerie, particularly in light of how Superman writer Schwartz and his tale of tulpas is what led me to re-watch that Superman film once again.

Then there is the notion of "the double." The doppelganger. Esoteric ideas addressed in the Twin Peaks universe. Portals to other dimensions. The mirrors placed throughout Twin Peaks, as when we see in the final episode of Season 2, Dale Cooper smashing his forehead against the mirror, shattering it, but revealing the demonic face of BOB. 

On June 5, 2017, here at Dust Devil Dreams, I wrote "bOWLing Green (Life-changing jackpots)" about the esoteric significance of August 14th, my birthday, which is also allegedly the “day of the mortal mirror.” Those born of that day are said to be “observant, honest, funny, self-unaware, escapist and disturbing.” Mmm, yep.

LAND OF AHHHH'S

While waiting on my companion outside a popular, local grocery store, I noticed a pick-up truck idling out front. But what got my attention was that it had a Kansas license plate on the front of the pick-up.

Being from Wichita, Kansas (and Sedgwick County - as the "SG" on the plate denotes), I know full-well that Kansas only issues license plates for the rear of a vehicle, not the front (except for some speciality plates). I walked over to the guy's driver's side window and got him to roll it down. He asked how he could help me and I said, "Are you from Kansas?" He said, "no." I inquired about the front plate KAZ 2Y5 and he sheepishly admitted (as his female companion chuckled) that he and a friend are fans of the CW show Supernatural, and the characters in the show are from Kansas.

Essentially, the man's plate was a copy of a prop plate used on Supernatural on the series' protagonists' 1967 Chevrolet Impala. Apparently the characters, Sam and Dean Winchester, drive around, a'la Route 66, and get involved in paranormal hunting - specifically, the hunting of evil, supernatural creatures. Supposedly, though, the Winchester brothers are from Lawrence, Kansas (home of the University of Kansas), which is in Douglas County, which is denoted on Kansas license plates as "DG."

I never watched Supernatural (assuming it was pretty-boy, teenybopper fluff), although I have since discovered it has been on the air since September 12, 2005 - premiering 12 years ago next week, making it one of the longest-running live action fantasy series in TV history. Interestingly, Superman's Clark Kent grows up in Smallville, Kansas. And in the 2001-11 series Smallville, Christopher Reeve appears in several episodes and the actor Jensen Ackles (a non-denominational Christian) appears in Smallville, although he left to commit to his role as Supernatural's Dean Winchester.

In any event, I guess I have a lot of catching up to do. Oh, and regarding my mention of the old Route 66 series (which was weird in its own right), I was last in Kansas on August 21st for the "Great American Solar Eclipse of 2017." While I spent most of my time in NE Oklahoma and SW Missouri, I did find myself briefly in Baxter Springs, Kansas on Route 66, not far from the "Rainbow Bridge" and grabbing lunch at Sonic. 

The Kansas state line sign at Baxter Springs - in that "Tri-State" nexus of weirdness. (Andrew W. Griffin / Red Dirt Report)

This is a very weird area where I observed the eclipse. It is known for the Spook Light. And so I watched the eclipse on the so-called "Spook Light" road which is technically in Ottawa County, Oklahoma. No one knows what causes the Spook Light, although many have tried to debunk its existence.

Apparently, a big part of the Supernatural storyline involves a showdown between the Archangels Michael and Lucifer in the Stull, Kansas cemetery in Season 5. Stull, really? I knew that it was that weird little town near Lawrence that had some freaky cemetery that was said to be a "portal to hell." It was also the name of an Urge Overkill EP released back in 1992 that featured their cover of Neil Diamond's "Girl, You'll Be A Woman Soon," featured on the Pulp Fiction soundtrack ("The tyranny of evil men").

The Urge Overkill's Stull EP, from 1992. (Andrew W. Griffin / Red Dirt Report)

Oh, and apparently there is a demon named "Crowley" in Supernatural (the Season 13 premieres on October 12th, oddly enough) and he appeared in the Season 11 episode "The Devil in the Details" which involved scenes at the Stull cemetery, a location expected to reappear whenever the final showdown between good and evil takes place. In the meantime, I guess they haven't run out of ideas ...

Stull is a little west of the 94 degrees west longitude line, but is in its vicinity of Kansas City, Topeka and Lawrence, which were in the 1983 nuke-scare film The Day After (which Louis Fowler wrote about here) and not far from the town of Lecompton, where the man who owned the land where the creepy, haunted Stull church was located lived. Lecompton was one of the towns I visited in early 2008 while on my tour of eastern Kansas retracing the steps of abolitionist John Brown

As I wrote at the time: "Also visited the former Kansas Territorial capital and pro-slavery stronghold of Lecompton, between Topeka and Lawrence. The museum there was chock full of items, although Brown visited only once to check on his incarcerated sons one night." Lots of history in this area. It was key in those years prior to, during and after the American Civil War.

Superman and Smallville and Stull and sync. Lots of "s" words for one afternoon.

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Andrew W. Griffin

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Andrew W. Griffin received his Bachelor of Science in Journalism from...

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Red Dirt Report was launched July 4, 2007 as an independent news website covering all manner of news, culture, entertainment and lifestyle stories that affect and interest Oklahoma readers and readers outside of our state. Our mission is to educate, promote civic engagement and discourse on public policy, government and politics. Our experienced journalists provided balanced in-depth coverage of news stories that affect Oklahomans. Our opinion/editorial stories come from a wide range of political view points. We carry out our mission by reporting, writing, and posting news and information. read more

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