This image was lost some time after publication.

While Warner Bros. does its best to throw into turmoil the sexuality of his big-screen alter ego through its various promotional materials, one of our operatives noticed that new Superman Brandon Routh is ensuring that his mild-mannered, off-duty identity stays very publicly hetero:

Century City, Gulfstream Diner, Saturday 5/20, 6pm. Usually we see the same two celebs here (those would be James Woods and Jon Voight) but on this night we were treated to an eyeful of the new Superman, Brandon Routh (Rhymes With Mouth), who slid into the booth behind us and proceeded to entwine himself with his dining companion, a very gorgeous woman (quick glances over our shoulder confirmed she was indeed female, with excellent skin and nice earrings). He ate some kind of lame-looking salad in between exhibitionist slurping on Miss Pro-Activ. Shortly thereafter, we saw Peter MacNichol, his wife, and his lookalike son. I think he noticed Superman too; how could you not?

The PDA is a smart move by Routh, whom we're sure has discovered that the downside to taking on such an iconic role is the inevitable fan confusion over his on-screen and private identities. Should questions about Superman's sexual preference continue and bleed into his personal life, Routh will have no choice but to wear the costume the next time he steps out for an ostentatiously heterosexual encounter at a restaurant. Sure, people will stare, but it shouldn't take more than one lunchtime hummer underneath that unmistakable red cape to restore the Man of Steel's reputation.