I understand that not everyone in a fandom as large as Superman can like all of the leads. There are people who think Jimmy is a goofy and somewhat useless character, that Clark is just a complete disguise with no merit, that Lois is a complete bitch with no redeeming qualities. Everyone is entitled to their opinion. It is a universal property. This story is part of our culture, belongs to all of us.
What I don't understand is how many people are aware that this is part of a series of films, yet give no reasoning behind the character's actions. I know that Bryan said this was a vague sequel, but what happened in Superman Returns was grounded in the original two films of the series, Superman: The Movie and Superman II. Events in those films shaped what happened there. We are picking up five (*LOL* Almost said six, for you LS fans) years after events. There is a history, a reason behind the hurt feelings there. Give them the history they deserve.
Even if you don't base your story directly on the original films' setup (and quite a few have chosen not to, which is great. Creativity greatly encouraged), give a reason for treating the character the way you do. Base it on a bit more than just the Superman Returns version. There was stuff going on with The Superman Family long before Superman Returns began. Don't just decide that you're going to go 'witchhunt' and make everyone hate them, too. There is a reasoning behind any person's behavior.
I particularly don't adore the Richard character, but he's an important part of Superman Returns. My original thought was to kill him off quickly, but honorably toward the end of the story. He was between Clark and Lois, something that is against the order of the universe to me, and I just wanted him gone. Anissa made me realize that there was a way to go about the situation without doing that, and reworking another character I've never had any love for, as well. Two for the price of one! (I'd explain what I mean on that, but it would spoil a good part of Act Three, one that I really am looking forward to, much to my own surprise!)
I'm not saying that you have to love this offense character. Just don't drive off readers of that particular angle because of your feelings. In this case, you're the journalist. It's your job to accurately portray this individual to your audience.
For example, both Lois and Superman had reasonings for what happened in SR, although the jury is still out as to how much she remembers. There are signs that she might know, then again signs that she doesn't. In a way it would be kinder if she didn't (Fans of Little Secrets will back me up on this). He did what he did partly out of duty, partly to stop her pain. He never stopped to think how she would feel about this, only that it was hurting her a great deal. And hurting him, for that matter, since you're the only one who knows it happened. She's hit with a double-edged sword: You love each other. Honestly love each other, more than anything else in the world. Enough so that breaking up would kill the both of you. But his being with you and not on his post caused the near-end of the world. And for you to handle it, all of your memories of those days is lost (or temperarily lost, as in LS).
If he's hurt, that's why he's hurt. In her case, if she's furious, it's because he walked out on her in what she thinks is the beginning of a relationship. He just up and disappears with no warning, leaving her crushed and not understanding. There is a reasoning behind it. She didn't just turn evil for no reason. Any woman (or man) who has been in that situation can understand that. Same with him, only not on such a fantastic scale. Use your experiences here. What would you have done, honestly? How would it make you feel, in either of their shoes? That's the best thing. Make yourself think about both sides of the story. Walk a mile....
Alright, I think I'm winding down now. I hope all of that made sense. I really did have a reasoning in writing that. I just hate when someone says 'I hate that character!' and then writes the whole story to reflect that. You walk away with a bad taste in your mouth and tend not to want to read that writer's work again. They ruin your whole experience on the website, forum, chat room, every time you run across them. Thankfully, that won't stop me, as I've been there longer, but....
That just frosts my cookies.