Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Superman & Lois - Pilot

Set after the events of Crisis on Infinite Earths on a rebooted Earth, the "Pilot" of Superman & Lois introduces Clark Kent (Tyler Hoechlin), Lois Lane (Elizabeth Tulloch), and their twin teenage sons Jonathan (Jordan Elsass) and Jordan (Alex Garfin). After a montage reintroducing Superman (complete with several callbacks and nods to various versions of the character over the years), the story starts in earnest with the death of Martha Kent (Michele Scarabelli) and a return to Smallville for the Kent family. While not shown on camera, it appears one of the major villains of the series will be Morgan Edge whose influence is destroying The Daily Planet and also has turned his attention to acquiring land in Smallville. There's also a more immeadiate threat in an armored villain looking to take down Superman who apparently has some ties to Lex Luthor.

While the twins can best be described as "Sporty Kent" and "Moody Kent," there is certainly room for growth for both characters, particularly as the tables are turned for the two in Jordan getting a fresh start in Smallville with a cute new friend (Inde Navarrette) and the added bonus of some latent super-powers just now emerging (and Jonathan likely to be sullen about leaving their old lives in Metropolis behind). No doubt a large part of the series will center on the younger generation dealing with one of them being born with some of their father's abilities. One of the biggest plot holes for the opener is the idea that Lois and Clark were able to keep his secrets from his sons until they were in high school (apparently he never took his glasses off in their presence or did anything that made them notice his abilities). While that allows for a big reveal in the pilot, it's one of the harder ideas to accept in a show about a man flying around space and nuclear reactors in tights and a cape.

The episode doesn't skip on its budget (making one wonder how large a chunk of the season's resources were dedicated to this episode). We get Superman fighting the armored Halo character in Metropolis and in space as well as the sequences from the early montage. While the focus of the show appears to be on the Kent family, it's obvious Superman's heroics (and Lois looking into what Morgan Edge wants in Smallville) will play an important role. The episode used a score at times, that seemed to fit well enough, but it never quite found the right notes that the early Superman films or Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (or even Superman: The Animated Series) came out of the gate with stamping their mark on Superman history. It's a solid opening, heavy early on with nostalgia and teenage angst (the aspect which scares me the most going forward), and certainly better than the dumpster fire that was The CW's last super-hero show that was forced to reboot on the fly after its star (and only real asset) bailed on the project after only a single mediocre season.

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