In a Post-Marvel Age, M Night Shyamalan’s Superheroes and Villains are Irrelevant

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In a Post-Marvel Age, M Night Shyamalan’s Superheroes and Villains are Irrelevant

Illustration: Shruti Yatam

W

ith Glass, M Night Shyamalan has, at long last, concluded his Eastrail 177 trilogy that began with Unbreakable at the beginning of the noughties. For a long time, the series promised to be a sharp, subversive, and thrilling take on comic-book tropes. Yet in the final installment, Shyamalan ruins a good thing by piling on the outdated thematic messages with a heavy hand.

Unbreakable followed a tense cat-and-mouse game between Elijah Price, alias Mr Glass (Samuel L Jackson) and David Dunn (Bruce Willis). Dunn is returning from New York to his home in Philadelphia on a train when it crashes. Dunn emerges as the only survivor but what’s even more shocking is that he escapes almost untouched. That’s when he encounters Glass, who explains to Dunn that some people are “unbreakable”. Glass then pushes him to explore his strength and his new-found abilities, forcing him to accept his identity as a vigilante, The Overseer. But when Dunn finds out that Glass killed innocent people just to manipulate him, he confines him to an asylum for the criminally insane.

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