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STUDIO: Warner Home Video
RATED: Not rated
RUNNING TIME: 917 minutes
• Green Arrow: Legend of the Emerald Archer
• Smallville: Big Fans
• Smallville Legends: The Oliver Queen Chronicles
• The Making of Smallville Legends: The Oliver Queen Chronicles
• Smallville Legends: Justice & Doom
Pre-Superman Clark Kent continues to battle his greatest villains: Lex Luthor, General Zod, Love Triangle Quagmire…
Tom Welling, Kristin Kreuk, Michael Rosenbaum, Allison Mack, Erica Durance, Annette O’Toole, John Glover.
The George Romero-directed episode was definitely a change of pace for the show…
Clark Kent is in Love with Lana Lang, but he has a super secret that prevents them from being together. Lana Lang is in Love with Clark Kent, but since she can’t have him, she settles for Lex Luthor. Lex Luthor is in love with Lana Lang, but he’s in love with being a villain more. Chloe Sullivan is in love with Clark Kent also, and she knows the super secret, but realizes that Clark only loves Lana, so she bones Jimmy Olsen instead. Lois Lane is the future love of Clark Kent, but shacks up with Green Arrow for the time being. I’m in love with extra soapy teen angst melodrama, because I’m sheep.
…as was the one directed by Wes Craven…
For most of the past few seasons of Smallville, I’ve seen how it can turn off the majority of fanboys, who refuse to accept the retconning of the Superman mythos, especially when it’s done by a super-angsty teen soap drama on one of the lesser watched networks. I’ve done a couple of reviews on this show already (here and here) and laid it all out there as to why I enjoy watching it, despite its many perceived failings, which include love triangles that drag on and on, the one-note kryptonite freak-of-the-week villain premise, and Tom Welling’s perceived lack of depth as the Teen of Steel which, after the steaming pile of ass that was The Fog, I can understand. Regardless of those many points, still I tune into this show week after week simply because I’ll generally watch anything Superman-related. Yet upon slogging through Season 6 of Smallville, I’m not so quick to jump to the defense of the show anymore. I still begrudgingly like it, and I’ll still watch every episode of this upcoming season, which I bet to be the last, but after 22 episodes last season of Clark-Lana-Lex, I’ve been smacked over the head with the realization that this show has got to end…and I’ve got to get counseling for sitting through it all.
There were three overall story arcs going on in Season 6: The Clark-Lana-Lex love triangle reaching an all-time level of schmaltz, Clark having to chase down phantoms – disembodied alien criminals that he set free when he escaped from the Phantom Zone – and the emergence of a Clearasil-set Justice League in the form of Green Arrow and previous superheroes introduced in earlier seasons: Aquaman, Cyborg, and The Flash. Leave us first touch upon the latter two story elements before diving headfirst into the empty pool that is the super love triangle, shall we? When we left our hero at the end of Season 5, Lex had been possessed by the phantom of Zod, everyone’s favorite Kryptonian supervillain. Zod banished Clark to the Phantom Zone and had set earth in chaos via and alien virus which disrupted the planet’s computer infrastructure in preparation for Zod’s rule over the planet. Oh and by the way, Lana willingly went to Lex after Clark broke her heart for the 357,000th time.
That Dominos Pizza delivery guy was about to learn the hard way that Green Arrow took that "30 minutes or less" very seriously…
Anyway, in the season premiere, “Zod,” Clark had to fight his way out of the Phantom Zone, thanks to the help of a fellow Kryptonian, Raya, who was sent there by Jor-El to escape the impending destruction of Krypton. Whereas most of the other denizens of the Zone are disembodied spirits, trapped there forever, Raya and Clark are flesh and blood, but powerless. When Clark makes good his escape, thanks to a back door left by Jor-El for members of his family, he inadvertently lets loose a pantheon of the Phantom Zone criminals that he’ll spend the rest of the season trying to capture or neutralize. Upon returning to earth, Clark has a showdown with Zod/Lex, to which the latter is completely unaware after having Zod take him over, thus preserving Clark’s secret for about the millionth time.
Later “Zoners” that Clark has to track down include some plant creature bitch in “Wither,” Baern, a radiation-wielding alien who embodies rapper Bow Wow of all people and can project beams of radiation that can kill even a fully-powered Kryptonian, which he proves by icing Raya, who had also escaped to help Clark. Then there was Titan (WWE’s Kane), a super-strong alien who likes to moonlight with some ultimate fighting in “Combat”; and Aldar (WWE’s Batista) who feeds on the bones of his victims in “Static”. In “Labyrinth”, Clark finds himself in another reality where he is a mental patient who only thinks he’s a super powered alien hero, thanks to another phantom who entered his mind. Only the appearance of Martian Manhunter allows Clark to defeat this Zoner. As a quick aside, this alternate reality mental institute storyline has been done in too many shows such as Buffy and Stargate: Atlantis, so it’s only natural that Smallville would eventually scam on it. The final phantom is revealed in the season finale, “Phantom”, and when it takes a piece of DNA from Clark, it turns into Bizarro.
"Now that you’ve got the kneeling before Zod part down, you will service Zod…and yes that is prison lingo…"
One by-product of all of the Zoner incursions on polite society is that it fuels Lex’s ultimate project called 33.1, in which he seeks to use super-powered people, be they meteor freaks or Zoners, to create a super powered army. His prototype is a former soldier (Battlestar Galactica’s Tahmoh Penikett) killed in Afghanistan that Clark has to defeat in the episode “Prototype.” When Oliver Queen (Justin Hartley) shows up, and the mysterious Green Arrow also arrives, Clark discovers they’re the same guy and they become clandestine allies against Lex. Project 33.1 is also what directly leads to the formation of Green Arrow’s Justice League. In the meantime, Arrow is filling Lois’ quiver with his arrow on the side.
Finally, the last major story element is the ever-evolving love triangle. Basically it goes like this: Lana leaves Clark because Clark can’t tell her his secret; Lana ends up with Lex and falls in love with him, even though she still loves Clark; this eventually leads to marriage, which Clark tries to stop; Lana learns Clark’s secret on her own, and is going to leave Lex until Lionel Luthor forces her to marry him or he’ll kill Clark; so Lana does the deed and gets pregnant with Lex’s baby…or does she; Lana finds out most of Lex’s dark secrets and plans to leave him; meanwhile Clark and Lex repeatedly clash over Lana; and when things come to a head in the season finale, Lana is killed in a car explosion…or is she? And that’s the short version. This thing just became a morass this season and you’d need at least a dozen showers to wash it all off of you. And meanwhile, Chloe is discovered to be a meteor freak as well, although she’s never displayed any abilities until late this season. Her power is finally revealed in the finale and Chloe may be dead…or is she? Lot of stuff happening in that final episode, admittedly.
There were definitely a lot of story threads dangling during Season 6. I was actually of the opinion that that season would be the last, but here we are, with Season 7 now upon us. Despite the love triangle quicksand of the past season, I’m still going to be right there glued to my TV when the Season 7 premiere arrives, because despite some of the previous season’s pitfalls, the smackdown between Clark and Bizarro Clark looks like it could be fairly bitchin’. Plus I’ve put in six years of my life into this show, so I fgure: what’s one more? But they’ve definitely got to resolve this Clark-Lana-Lex thing once and for all, because it’s absolutely dragging the show down, or dragging it even lower for people who don’t like the show to begin with. I’m a loyal watcher of Smallville, but even I can only take so much. Nevertheless, the show did have a couple of things going right for it. First of all, the rounding up of the Phantom Zoners provided a brief respite from more meteor freaks that probably would have had to take their place, and the fights with Zod and Titan were pretty entertaining. And overall, the show runners are still managing to craft some interesting storylines for Clark.
The show continues to look good in widescreen and it’s always got nice looking special effects. There are several special features scattered throughout the discs including deleted scenes for various episodes. There are also several featurettes including Green Arrow: Legend of the Emerald Archer, which chronicles the supergero through his many incarnations and how he came to be included in Smallville. Smallville: Big Fans deals with all the scary people who stand in line for hours, or craft their lives around the show. Pretty much like Trekkies only without the cachet. Smallville Legends: The Oliver Queen Chronicles is a fairly embarrassing computer animation telling of Green Arrow’s origins, and The Making of Smallville Legends: The Oliver Queen Chronicles is pretty much self explanatory. Finally, Smallville Legends: Justice & Doom is an animated comic book tying into the storyline for Season 6. And it goes at a pace that you need to take speed reading classes to follow it.
"Hey uh, Clark, that fireball’s getting a little close."
"Forget about it and keep walking in slow-mo, this is the money shot…"