Alan Roden: Margot Kidder was my real-life Super-woman

WHEN newspaper journalists are asked who inspired them to join the profession, the expected answer is Woodward and Bernstein.

Wednesday, 16th May 2018, 7:00 am
Margot Kidder, as star reporter Lois Lane, helped inspire Alan Roden to become a journalist

They are the duo who famously uncovered the Watergate scandal that brought down US President Richard Nixon.

But for me, when I was at school trying to decide on a career, my inspiration for choosing journalism was a very different partnership: Clark Kent and Lois Lane.

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The DC Comics characters are reporters at The Daily Planet, where Clark’s cunning disguise of a pair of glasses means nobody recognises that he’s Superman. Lois is the more experienced journalist, even winning a Pulitzer Prize. It was the portrayal of Lois and Clark by Margot Kidder and Christopher Reeve in the iconic movie series which piqued my interest in journalism. Margot’s performance was brilliant: one minute she was a fearless investigative reporter dodging the police barrier to eavesdrop on terrorists at the Eiffel Tower, the next poking fun at her character’s inability to spell.

“How many Ts in bloodletting?” she once asked Clark.

I was deeply saddened when she passed away this week at the age of just 69. Her on-screen partnership with Christopher Reeve, who died in 2004, is one of my abiding childhood memories. Margot was much more than a successful actor though. In later life, she was an activist who talked openly about her mental health struggles and campaigned passionately for a number of causes.

She inspired me, and many others around the globe, and was a real-life Super-woman.