Monday, September 18, 2006

Smallville - Season 5, aka the 22 hour promo for Superman Returns

Watching it's fifth season on DVD, Smallville feels more like a 22-hour commercial for the Superman Returns movie. It isn't all bad and there are some good moments here and there. Some episodes, like the Aquaman stealth-pilot, got too cute with the pop-culture and geek references. Clark's fight with the Evil Kryptonians seemed resolved a bit too easily since he defeated them by what amounts to tapping them on the left shoulder as he walked past them on the right.

When not busy giving nods to Donner and Superman - The Movie there were a few episodes that I liked, but over all the entire season seems rushed and skittish. It was almost like someone was worried that what happened on the small screen might hinder the movie's box office. Here are a few things about the fifth season I thought worth mention.

The Aquaman episode was spectacularly awful. A few times you could actually see the doofus surfer moron who played A.C., a doofus surfer moron, reading his next line from cue cards held off-camera. I'm surprised his lips didn't move. You'd think out of all the DSM's they looked at for this episode the producers could find at least one that didn't need to secretly flex his toes in sequence when counting to ten. I'd wager there are out takes where the DSM says something like "Okay, Clark. AC looks angry. Let's go. Walks off to right."

This season saw the attempt to build up of a lot of sexual tension between Clark and Lois, laying the groundwork for their later relationship. There were many scenes of Clark squirming uncomfortably as Lois pole-danced in a club, wore bikini's and walked around her apartment in the nude. All the teasing cheesecake was necessary, I suppose, because it is only looks that count for the teen demographic and the producers must feel that no one could be attracted to someone for their personality. I'd buy their budding TV relationship more if Lois didn't look 8 years Clark's senior. As it appears now, Clark seems to be puppy-dogging after Mrs. Robinson.

The last four seasons has shown that people in Smallville can't drive worth a damn and season 5 only reinforces it. They must have the highest vehicle insurance rates in the country, if not the world. Heck, rates for cars are probably higher in Smallville than for those in Iraq. It's rare that any car in Smallville gets from point A to point B without a spectacular, fiery crash. If it isn't a a tornado picking up a vehicle and smashing it then they are getting thrown by super-psychos, flipped, exploded, run off the road or hit by meteors.

Chloe needs to join the DCU continuity. Look at those sad, sad eyes. It just rips me apart that her love for Clark is unrequited. There is precedent for bringing a supporting character from one form of media to the other. Jimmy Olsen was a creation of the Superman radio show and was so popular he was thereafter featured in the comic books. It's true that Jimmy sucks but he kind of didn't until the Silver Age got a hold of him. DC needs to ditch all the established crushing history and expectations of their characters, bounce Lois and Lana into limbo and allow Chloe a shot at Clark again. Poor little lamb.



  1. I watched that season off and on, but you're right about the car crashes. It seemed like every time I turned it on, someone was having some kind of accident or something.

    What's DSM, btw? Cand you tell me PDQ, lol?

  2. Not being too hot on DC continuity, it took me twenty minutes or so to work out that the surfer bloke was Aquaman. Up to that point, the episode was incomprehensible. After that, well, I reckon you're right with "spectacularly awful".

    I've often wondered if Chloe exists in the DCU. She and Lex out-act everyone else in that series and they made a bad casting error making that squeaky simpering woman as Lana and the unpleasant cruel-looking one as Lois when they could have had Allison Mack as either.

    If Smallville didn't have to (sort of) follow DCU continuity I figure Lois and Lana would have had a car trip into oblivion several seasons ago.

  3. Yes, Chloe should be part of DC continuity. Absolutely.

    Love Allison Mack.


  4. Chloe is the best addition to the Superman supporting cast in decades, and easily the most sympathetic character on the show. I like how her name sort-of continues the convention of most of the Superman cast: chLoe SuLLivan.

    I can't fathom why DC hasn't brought her over.

  5. Funny how season 5 was WAY better than the movie!


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