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"I'm a blood-sucking fiend! Look at my outfit!"
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March 09 2008

(SPOILER) James Marsters' return to "Smallville." March 27th episode info, images, and future episodes. On the same page: previously seen Dark Horse solicitations for June.

I like this pic. For a tv promo effort, it's incredibly good.
"All the actors are real nice."

Maybe, but what about the writing, James?! C'mon, does he know Michael's leaving? Maybe that would stop him from coming on *blah* season 8.

"...why not?"

Oh, give me a few hours and I'll tell you why not.

*pout* I'm bitter. I know. It's a sad fact but one that is unfortunately true.
Never watched Smallville, but after meeting Turi Meyer, one of the writers, I said I'd give it a go.
It's enjoyable, but they are hampered by existing Superman lore, so Clark has to go through seven, and now eight, seasons where he saves Lana from certain death every single week without her ever finding out he's got superpowers. The number of times she, and Chloe, Lex, et al, are conveniently knocked unconscious just when Clark needs to do his stuff unseen, and the number of baddies who find out his secret who manage to die suddenly, is really stretching reality.

But then we are talking about a superhero who's idea of a disguise, which fools his closest friends, is a pair of glasses.
I think the main problem with Smallville is that it doesn't resonate, it never becomes more than its premise. There's never an added layer, a symbolic meaning, a reflection on life.. and that becomes dull very soon. Yeah, and acting deficiency doesn't help either. I'd love to see Joss pen an episode, so just to know what it could have been.

*trembling for the CW's inevitable idea of a Batman equivalent*
trembling for the CW's inevitable idea of a Batman equivalent


That was the original intent for The WB, they were going to do the adventures of Bruce Wayne before he became Batman. But it didn't pan out and Smallville happened instead.
Luckily the Batman films are doing well enough that Warner won't let anyone else screw with ol' blue ears.

But then we are talking about a superhero who's idea of a disguise, which fools his closest friends, is a pair of glasses.

Nah, not the point. The point is, Superman is so huge an idea and Clark is so small as just a man that people don't connect them in their minds. The trouble comes as in 'Smallville' where you have Clark and Superman so close together in the sort of figurative space of the show that people should be able to.

(and presumably you haven't seen it in a while zz9 - Chloe's known for about 3 seasons as does Lana as of last season and Lex's dad Lionel as well as Oliver 'Green Arrow' Queen and the rest of the - still embryonic - Justice League, though I agree it used to be hilarious waiting to see how whomever would get knocked out - would've made a great drinking game, if you hated your liver with a fierce passion ;)

'Smallville's biggest problem though is it's just too damn long (and apparently getting longer). The whole story needs 4-5 years at the very most: Clark's senior year then 4 years boy to (Super)man. Instead they have to drag it out year after year after year (re)manufacturing absurd plots, rehashing monsters of the week, giving anyone (or any plotline) that needs it Kryptonite, having this (nigh ;) invulnerable superhuman who's apparently one of the nicest guys you could meet constantly refusing (still) to take an active part in saving people's lives (rather than just reacting). Clana lasted/is lasting years and after the first 6 months was pretty much just a stream of awkward conversations and moon eyes that went nowhere. Lex's descent to evil (previously the best part of the show IMO) has been castrated and reshuffled, moving him backwards in his development seemingly just so they can squeeze a couple more years out of the show. Lois is apparently only there to fall in and out of bed with the wrong guy and be rescued. Etc. Etc. Etc.

In fact, it's so poor in so many ways that it's a wonder I still watch it ;-).

(and I take it we know that JM has actually been back in for the last 2-3 episodes BTW ?)
I honestly didn't know Smallville came about because they couldn't do Gotham High:the Suitless Years. Thank Gods and all animalistic spirits. Birds of Prey was bad enough.
Yes, probably they won't attempt it now because it'd clash with the awesome Chris Nolan (future) trilogy, but you never know what's going on with the CW's superior minds.

Saje, I stopped watching after the first 3 seasons or so for the exact problems you mentioned, but there are several friends of mine who still follow it religiously BECAUSE it's not engaging programming. You don't have to digest it, you don't have to react to it.. it's just there to be watched. Maybe if I wasn't so Joss-spoiled, I'd sit through it without so much ranting.
(and presumably you haven't seen it in a while zz9 - Chloe's known for about 3 seasons as does Lana as of last season

I'm watching from the beginning so have yet to get to those developments. At least now I have something to look forward to...

I does lack the depth of Buffy but it's entertaining enough. Though after seven years I wonder if there's anyone left in town who hasn't had some ability boosted by Kryptonite. And just how does a high school student manage to own and run a coffee shop at the same time?

Also, I don't know how old Lex is supposed to be but executive of billion dollar business who spends lots of time hanging out with local high school kids? Creeepy.
zz9, he wasn't creepy then! *smirk* But I was mostly in it for the Clex so what do I know ;)

Now, Lexana. THAT's creepy!

[ edited by Mirage on 2008-03-09 12:49 ]
I'm watching from the beginning so have yet to get to those developments. At least now I have something to look forward to...

Ah shit, sorry zz9, misinterpreted your comments about "seven and now eight" seasons and assumed you knew what was going on up-to-date. Err, "spoilers" ? *is sheepish* ;).

... who still follow it religiously BECAUSE it's not engaging programming.

Yeah I get that actually Perseo. It's interesting too because it's one of the few programmes I can sit and dissect as i'm watching it, usually I don't do that until afterwards. Personally i'm probably still watching for Chloe, for the times they produce an original way for him to use his powers (in fairness, the effects are generally excellent), for the odd great episode from a writer or director that really "gets" Big Blue (some of the Superman mythology ones are still good) and for completion's sake.

(even the previously reliable Lex and Lionel showdowns - featuring two of the three best actors on the show IMO - seem to have started going around in circles)
It has to be said Smallville has its glimmers in the general bleakness. Being a DC fan, sometimes homaging a famous Superman staple or storyline gives the producers a nice occasion to rise to higher levels, or Allison Mack's freshness.. Michael Rosenbaum's acting altogether.. though they never manage to sustain the momentum for more than a couple episode before reverting to Kryptofreak-of-the-week episodes.

BUT even at its worst it manages to stay above Charmed:-)
Ah shit, sorry zz9, misinterpreted your comments about "seven and now eight" seasons and assumed you knew what was going on up-to-date. Err, "spoilers" ? *is sheepish* ;).

It's okay Saje, I'm planning your death, but in a good way. :)

Chloe? She's all right, but Lana is way hotter.

BUT even at its worst it manages to stay above Charmed.
I believe that's called "damming with faint praise" :)
zz9, an achievement is always an achievement!
True, Perseo. I suppose until I have actually had a script of mine bought/produced I can't really mock others.

Except Hex. Jeez, that sucked.
You just reminded me about Hex. My reaction? I laughed out loud at the thought of it. Sadly, I'm in a café. It freaked people out.
Sorry Gossi. If I'd have managed to forget Hex I know I'd be pissed if anyone reminded me.
I wish James would be in a show that I watched. I mean I'm happy he will be on the show and I'll watch his scenes in this, but this show is very boring and I don't like any of the actors. The Without a Trace episodes he was in was a disapointment and I won't even talk about the blip he was in for Saving Grace. I haven't seen PS I Love You as it didn't open anywhere near here, but I don't get the impression that he is in it much. It just seems like other than Torchwood, his talent is totally wasted.
Love, love, love the pictures of James. It takes me back to scenes in "Fool for Love" of him and Buffy sparring in the alley. Ahh, good times.
The Batman series was called Bruce Wayne and it was going to follow Bruce Wayne as he traveled the world and learned what he needed to eventually become Batman.MR who plays Lex on Smallville was going to play Bruce's friend Harvey Dent who we know one day becomes the Batman baddie,Two Face.

The pilot was killed due to Warner Bros. plans for the Batman film series.The idea of doing a Batman Year One type film had begun in the movie wing and they blocked the series since it would be covering the same stuff.The movie of course became Batman Begins.

Kryptonsite has a special page all about the aborted Bruce Wayne series including the pilot script,the series outline,the timeline of events leading up to it's creation and what killed it.

http://www.kryptonsite.com/brucewayne/

[ edited by Buffyfantic on 2008-03-09 22:16 ]
I totally agree with Saje's analysis.

I do think Smallville is enjoyable, and if I could watch without thinking too deeply about how much better it could be then it would be fine. But the fact is that it's very easy to see so much more potential in the show.

Most of the villains and associated plots from the first few seasons were incredibly silly and repetitive. I am only as far as season six right now, but it's unbelievable that they spent so many seasons repeating the same dynamics between the characters too- the perpetually dull Clark and Lana relationship, Lex starting his descent into evil whilst maintaining a friendship with Clark, so many people being unaware of Clark's secret for so long... even the interesting Lex/Lionel relationship got boring despite the talent of both actors involved, simply because it never seemed to move anywhere and Lionel's motivations were always so unclear and never thoroughly explored.

The female characters seem to spend a huge amount of their time getting into dangerous situations from which they have to be rescued, when they're not getting into unwise relationships and fawning over Clark. I think Erica Durance is a terrific Lois but her character rarely has anything to do.

There are some bright spots. I think the relationships Clark has with the people who know about his secret, like Chloe and his parents, are interesting. Lana has finally gained some depth now that she's in a relationship with Lex. Lionel continues to be an interesting presence. But it's just insane how little ground has been covered with these characters over six years.
James is fantastic as Brainiac and I really enjoy Smallville. So count me in as very happy that James is back for more
All I can say is, an actor's gotta work. ;-) I'd actually take Charmed (the first few seasons) over Smallville, especially if Michael B. is leaving. (My satellite service doesn't contract with the CW, I caught the other season James was in thanks to a friend recording it for me.)
It is IMO, truly BAD.

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