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  • Typical of the Superman mythos, there are some plot points reminiscent of the story of Moses:
    • A baby is born in a culture that considers his very existence illegal and sent away to escape death.
    • The boy discovers his heritage and spends his adult years travelling, falls in love and gets in contact with an immaterial entity who encourages him to use his superhuman abilities for the greater good.
    • The hero tries peacefully reasoning with an authority figure, who shows no compromise, which only seals the fate of his own people.
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    • As a punishment to the established order, the hero brings them destruction and allows a culling of the younger generation.
  • A scene in the trailers of a shirtless, bearded Clark dramatically screaming and posing evokes 300, one of Zack Snyder's previous movies.
  • In another nod to 300, the Smallville High football team is called the Smallville Spartans (instead of Crows like in the Smallville show).
  • And another nod to 300, with Jor-El uttering the phrase "This is madness!" during Zod's attempted military coup on Krypton. One of the tracks on the soundtrack album is also title "This is Madness".
  • The shot of Zod's gunships advancing on Jor-El's citadel to retrieve the Kryptonian codex, with Krypton's sun Rao behind them, is very evocative of a similar shot in Apocalypse Now.
  • Superman's baseball team of choice is the Kansas City Royals.
  • Johnathan Kent mentions Kansas State University.
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    • Superman's color scheme, crimson and blue with a splash of yellow, evokes the colors of K-State's in-state rival, the University of Kansas Jayhawks.
  • All of the Kryptonians are named after various counterparts from the comics, some of whom are of little renown.
  • When the Jor-El program is explaining Krypton's history to Clark on the crashed Kryptonian ship, he shows a picture of Zod with troops marching behind him that's very reminiscent of a poster of Mao Zedong.
  • The explanation of the history of Krypton (having a centralized government with a few leaders, the government creating and controlling the caste system, artificial design and breeding of all children, and the method of exile from the planet) is remarkably similar to Brave New World.
  • The Kryptonian World Engine shares a similar design and function with the Creation Engine used by the Kherubim, who are Kryptonian expies in the now defunct Wildstorm Universe, which is a DC property. Mr. Majestic is one of the Superman expies in the Wildstorm Universe.
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  • Clark reading Plato, when the society of Krypton is based on Plato's "the Republic".
  • Jor-El's holographic displays being silver in colour and semi-abstract in design are a nod to the Silver Age, which utilised similar art styles.
  • Wegthor, Krypton's moon, being shattered in the Kryptonian sky is an allusion to the incident which had Jax-Ur be the first person eternally banished to the Phantom Zone.
  • The Captain Ferris is most likely Carol Ferris, otherwise known as Star Sapphire.
  • Jor-El's suit incorporates a Batman homage.
  • Keep Calm And Call Batman
  • Blaze Comics
  • Utopia Casino also makes an appearance. Which is owned by Anthony Gallo (the man who brought Kryptonite into contact with Superman and thereby exposed his weakness to it)
  • There is also a Watchmen smile.
  • A very quick blink and you'll miss it one goes to WGBS News of Morgan Edge's Galaxy Communications.
  • The elementary school Clark goes to is named after Superman editor Mort Weisinger.
  • "You will give the people of Earth an ideal to strive towards. They will race behind you, they will stumble, they will fall. But in time, they will join you in the sun, Kal. In time, you will help them accomplish wonders." evokes All-Star Superman.
    • Compare this scene from to this panel from the same comic.
    • It's also a paraphrase of the famous "They can be a great people, Kal-El, and they wish to be..." from Superman: The Movie. Many fans seeing the trailer hoped the speech would be used as-is.
  • Kelex has a bit of history.
  • Consider Alex Ross
  • The scene with Superman flying over a herd of zebra is straight from Superman: Birthright.
  • Those Polar Bears are an in joke.
  • While the ship that carried the neonatal Kal-El to Earth was redesigned, Richard Donner's ship is honored in the film.
  • The Fortress Key.
  • Wayne Enterprises.
  • Star Labs.
  • 52 is also a reccurent number in the film, which is a homage to The New 52.
  • The fight between Superman and the other Kryptonians near the end looks like it's straight out of Dragon Ball Z.
  • When Superman first flies with confidence the sound effect is very close to the flying sound from the 1950s TV series The Adventures of Superman.
  • Snyder has stated that Birdy the Mighty was an influence. Many people have noted that the fight between Superman and Zod at the end is reminiscent of the Birdy/Nataru fight at the end of season 2 of Birdy the Mighty: Decode.
  • Zod saying "Release the World Engine" could be a reference to "Release the Kraken" from Clash of the Titans.

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