Friday, April 15, 2011

TV: Smallville the Final Season Mid-Season Reflections + Finale Trailer (Commentary)

With six hours left to air in Smallville's final season starting with tonight's episode, "Kent", it felt like the right time to look back at season ten so far and see how the show has lived up to expectations and leave some final hopes for what is left to come in the last episodes.

Back in August before the Fall TV season started, a season ten wishlist was posted here on GeekPlate and now it is time to see which of those dreams have come true so far.

"#10 Clark & Tess - I would like to see a relationship between Clark and Tess to happen either due to both being under a spell or because of the situation they are in." CHECK. While it was not the regular characters, this coupling did occur thanks to the alternate Clark/Tess that existed in episode ten "Luthor". Anytime Tom Welling and Cassidy Freeman can share the screen is bonus, and to add the twist of intimacy with these alternate characters just increases the entertainment factor. Expect a return to these waters in "Kent".

"9 Bruce Wayne/Graysons & 8 Wonder Woman - I would enjoy it if they were willing to at least mention Bruce Wayne in passing/I think it would be fun if they had the circus come to Metropolis in an episode and had Clark watch a young acrobat couple, The Flying Graysons. & I would love to see the interpretation of Diana for the Smallville universe." CHECK. CHECK. Ignoring the Graysons wish that was an extreme long shot, the Bruce mention did happen and Wonder Woman came along for the ride. In the episode "Fortune", Chloe says to Clark, "I have met several others like you - a billionaire with high tech toys and a wondrous woman who's gonna throw you for a loop."

"7 Directing - I think what would be awesome for the final season is if they allowed all of the actors that have directed an episode over the series' run to come back and direct an episode of season ten." CHECK? All of the actors directing might have been asking too much, but Tom did direct an episode "Patriot" and in the final few episodes yet to air Justin Hartley (Oliver Queen) will be making his directing debut.

"6 Guest Star Arcs - I would like to see in the final season guest stars get more than one episode to explore their character." CHECK? Not quite what I was expecting but this season has so far brought multiple episode appearances by Lionel Luthor ("Luthor", "Beacon", "Scion"), Alexander/Conner (Played by 3 actors "Lazarus", "Isis", "Harvest", "Beacon", "Scion"), Rick Flagg ("Lazarus", "Shield", "Ambush", "Collateral"), Slade Wilson ("Patriot", "Icarus"), Desaad ("Abandoned", "Masquerade"), Carter Hall ("Shield", "Icarus"), Jonathan Kent ("Lazarus", "Kent") and the final few episodes will include a second appearance this season from Supergirl.

"5 More Interconnectivity - how the characters on the show used to interact with each other a lot more without needing Clark to be there." CHECK? This is something that is made more difficult this season with such a small regular cast but to my enjoyment there have been many scenes with Tess and Lois, and when Chloe returned right before this last hiatus she and Lois had some classic Chlo-Lo scenes as referred to by the fandom.

"4 Diversified Cast - the disappearance of different age groups involved in the cast." FAIL. I really thought this would be one of the first wishes to happen but it seems the show went against growing the supporting cast to focus on the story and returning guest stars. Mia, Zan & Jayna have not appeared nor been mentioned once, the same goes for John Jones with only Perry White having had a few mentions. Scant appearances by returning guest stars Lionel Luthor, Martha and Jonathan Kent have represented the older generation, and the newcomer Conner Kent is the sole youth character this season.

"3 Return to the Red and Blue - As nice as it was for Clark to be wearing the House of El crest in season nine, it came at the suffering of his signature color scheme which went dreadfully gray and dark." CHECK. Not only have primary colors been returned to Clark's wardrobe, but his Blur persona got a brand new red jacket with the House of El crest on the front in "Shield". Brilliant and most welcome style choices this season. Not to mention Conner wearing the flannel in "Scion".

"2 Cast Reunion/Retrospective for DVD" INCOMPLETE. It is still too early for this wish as the season is still ongoing but given the fan support this season and the focus of creating a great season I still hold out hope that they will be able to wrangle everyone together for one day to reflect on the show, their experiences on it and how things/actors changed/developed over the years.

"1 Chloe Sullivan - my sincere hope is that she is in the final episode - would be nice to have her in episode 200 as well - and maybe even in the final scene of the series." CHECK? At the time of the wishlist the rumors around Allison Mack's character Chloe Sullivan was that she would only be in a handful of episodes. While for the most part that was true, the show did its best to keep her presence around, showing photographs, flashbacks, and texts when possible. It was disappointing that she could not be in "Homecoming" and that they restricted story possibilities with Oliver by continuing their romance even while she was away but her return arc of episodes were all entertaining and true to her character. Now just the finale awaits, which she is confirmed to be in.


That is an amazing result for a list made before the season when I had no idea what would take place and probably why I have thought this final season so far has been outstanding and enjoyed it so much.

With five episodes left counting "Kent", there are only simple hopes for the rest of the final season of Smallville: more guest stars, the suit, flight, Luthor involvement and a finale as timeless as the pilot that created the series. No Darkseid need apply.

Here is the CW trailer for the two-hour Smallville series finale:

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