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Smallville First Season

 

Smallville - First Season (DVD)

Review by Suzanne 8/6/04

I did not start watching this show until partway through the second season.  I am a long-time Superman comic book fan (from the 60's and 70's mostly), and I had heard about all of the changes they were going to make (not having him fly, no costume, etc.) and I thought, ugh, no way!  This show will make me tear my hair out.  I should have known better, since I did love Lois and Clark: The Adventures of Superman.  But this show has taken a lot more liberties with the Superboy/Superman story than Lois and Clark ever did.

When you watch TV shows that are science fiction, fantasy, or based on a comic book, you never know what kind of quality you will be getting.  TV does not have a great track record for making good, serious comic book shows, aside from some of the animated series.  Before Lois and Clark, we had shows like Batman, which high camp; Wonder Woman, which tried to be like Batman but failed; and shows like The Greatest American Hero and The Incredible Hulk, which could have been about anyone but just happened to feature superheroes (and really, the Incredible Hulk series was just a "Fugitive" retread).

I'm happy to say that Smallville is different. It's mostly well-written. It's hip (in the good sense) and aims at teens but not by insulting their intelligence.  It belongs on the WB because it has more in common with Dawson's Creek and Everwood than it does with other "genre" fan shows.

I was happy to watch the first season because it made so many things in the second season make sense!  It really helped me put everything in a kind of perspective and learn more things about Clark (and his relationship with Lana) than I had before.

In many of the first season episodes, they featured a particular "freak", i.e. one of the teens in the town who had been affected by Kryptonite and then turned evil.  Clark had to fight them to save someone (usually Lana).  The only interesting parts were the relationships between all of the regular characters and the little bits of information they let drop about Clark's past.  It was a good first season that way; they had to lay everything out and build up the characters so that you would get interested in them.

I really enjoy the special effects on the show.  OK, but is that why I watch? No, I watch because a) I'm a Superman fanatic, and b) Tom Welling is so gorgeous.  I hope they find someone half as cute for the new movie.

To anyone who wants to start watching the show, I would say, the second and third seasons are way better, but you really should watch the first season to understand what's going on first.

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