February 25, 2020
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TV’s Smallville jumped the shark long ago

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Contributed | BDN
Contributed | BDN

Smallville is meant to be the televised origin story of Superman/Clark Kent.  It has been on televison for 9 seasons, formerly on the WB network and now on the CW.  The ReelWife and I gave up on Smallville about a season ago. We didn’t finish season 8 and haven’t watched any of season 9. The series peaked with the introduction of Brainaic and the death of Jonathan Kent. After that, I felt the series jumped the shark. I was willing to stick around only because of the occasional good episode and fun introduction of a comic book super villain or hero.  After last year, I’m not even willing to do that.

The overarching story suffered when the show would not let Superman evolve. It kept the annoying Lana Lang (his high school girlfriend) around way too long and finally resolved her in a dumb “super” way instead of a personal, moral choice. She wasn’t even on the show as a regular the season when that storyline was finally resolved except to suddenly reappear, get superpowers, and then disappear again.

One of the best parts of the show was Michael Rossenbaum’s version of Lex Luthor but without him, Lionel Luthor, or the Kents (Clark’s parents) there was no one for Clark to do his moral plays with. Smallville had a choice of being a tight, well-written origin story which lasted four or five seasons and did not significantly differ from the prior films or to go its own alternate-reality way, watering-down the story into 10 seasons (which is where it is headed) and lose its credibility in the bargain.

Smallville was one of my favorite shows several years ago. Now, I’m embarrassed to own the DVDs of the first seven seasons. At any time, the show could have been modified into a Justice League show, a Green Arrow show, or a Metropolis (grown Superman show) but instead they insisted on staying with material that has overstayed its welcome. This is the ultimate example of a “money grab” by the showrunners and studio instead of creating a quality product. Rather than ending on a high note a few seasons ago, I wish the producers and studio would simply put the show out of its misery.