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The Boys Season 2 Finale Review – The Good, The Bad, and The Deadly (2 x 08)

Ryan and Billy Butcher sitting together during "The Boys" Season 2 Finale

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The Boys season 2 finale tied multiple storylines in a neat bow but had to kill off one of the show’s pivotal characters in order for the heroes and some villains to grow for the better.

This season has been a wild ride, to say the least, as the political angles the show tackled and the introduction of new Supes has added to the show’s twisted universe.

Unfortunately, Billy Butcher’s quest to rescue his wife Becca ended in tragedy as Ryan fatally wounds his own mother with his laser vision while trying to rescue her from the clutches of Stormfront.

Speaking of whom, Stormfront has been an amazingly polarizing character this season, and to see her demise in the finale is a little bittersweet, but a much-needed conclusion to her story arc. She may not actually be dead yet but it’s doubtful that she’ll rear her Nazi head again anytime soon.

Becca’s loss, however, signals a significant shift in character growth for Billy as Becca’s dying wish is for him to protect Ryan from turning into his demented Supe dad, Homelander.

This change in Butcher also steers The Boys in several new directions for season 3, which should mean refreshing new takes on each of the show’s amazing cast.

“Only The Good Die Young”

As the episode ends, Billy Joel’s “Only The Good Die Young” plays as it cleverly echoes the death of Becca, who was essentially the only “good” character left on the show.

Shantel VanSanten’s performance this season was amazing, and she will be sorely missed on the show, even though canonically she’s only met The Boys this season, it seems that the team will miss her presence as well because she’s one of the few people in the world who makes Billy Butcher look like a lost puppy dog, relatively speaking.

It’s kind of cruel for the showrunners to finally have a moment of bonding between Becca and the rest of Billy’s crew like that, and then immediately take her away. (Not nice at all)

Still, her death was emotionally stirring, and Karl Urban’s tear-jerking performance upon Becca’s death was as good as it gets.

On the bright side, Ryan is basically Butcher’s son now, and he’s already rubbing off on him the right way as he imparts sage advice on the young Supe: “Don’t be a c**t”

Which, of course, Ryan repeats when Billy asks “Remember what I told you.”

In the end, Ryan is kept safe by the FBI and should be out of reach from Homelander or Vought until whatever unfolds in season 3.

Stormfront Did Nazi That Coming

 

Oof. Talk about rough. Stormfront got her butt handed to her in the finale. Which was quite well-deserved because, after all, she was a racist Nazi psychopath whose only redeeming quality is her dank meme game.

First, she’s publicly outed by A-Train, Hughie, and Starlight as a 100-year old Nazi who was secretly the wife of the deceased founder of Vought. Which, of course, pisses her off and basically makes her worthless to Vought.

Then she receives an oh-so-satisfying beatdown from Starlight, Kimiko, and Maeve that sends her cowering away flying.

Finally, she gets laser-visioned to bits by Ryan, which leaves her muttering incoherently in German.

As much as I initially liked Stormfront and the nuanced nature of her character, it’s definitely a good thing that she’s now locked away – hopefully never to be seen again.

Kudos to Aya Rachel Cash, however, for slaying this villainous role because she made me legitimately hate her with a passion despite being so cool upon her introduction.

The Deadliest Supe on ‘The Boys’ Is NOT Homelander

In a shocking last-second twist, The Boys decided to throw a major curveball by revealing that goodie-two-shoes Congresswoman Victoria Neuman (Claudia Doumit) was actually the Mind-blowing Supe from the penultimate episode this season, who caused a legendary courtroom murder scene that rivals (I daresay) the infamous Red Wedding from Game of Thrones.

Looking back, it’s kind of a mystery why she killed the people she killed, and that just makes waiting for season 3 that much more painful!

Plus, Hughie decides to work for her on her campaign committee, and now she’s given the power to head an entire department dedicated to keeping tabs on Supes.

The jury is still out on whether Victoria is actually evil, or is just a tragically misguided hero. But it’s probably safe to assume that unwrapping the mystery surrounding her should be a big part of season 3.

Other Key Events:

  • Homelander actually showed he might actually care about Ryan after all because he acted like a real dad for the first time in this episode. However, that image faded quickly when he murdered a bunch of Vought militia, which resulted in this bloody mess:

  • Homelander also got blackmailed to submission by Maeve, and he was forced to make a public speech that made him acknowledge both Maeve and Starlight as his “trusted friends.” Clearly, not all is right with Homelander as he is seen masturbating on top of a building in the middle of the night literally trying to gain release from his frustrating predicament.

  • The Boys finally get a series of W’s after getting screwed for most of the season:
    • They’re cleared of criminal charges by Colonel Mallory and the FBI
    • Hughie and Starlight officially resume their relationship – Starlight also rejoins The Seven to keep an eye on Homelander.
    • Frenchie and Kimiko run off into the sunset together
    • MM finally goes back to his family
    • Billy, albeit in tragic fashion, finally finds some kind of peace.

  • A-Train is reinstated in The Seven due to his efforts in helping expose Stormfront as a Nazi.
  • The Deep got screwed by The Church of the Collective and has apparently been receiving unsatisfactory oral stimulation from his fake wife (poor guy). He’s also not back with The Seven.
  • Black Noir is still hospitalized after his allergic reaction (beware of Almond Joys!).
  • Compound V is off-limits to the public indefinitely, as stated by Stan Edgar himself.
  • Maeve is finally free from Homelander’s torment and is able to freely pursue her romance with Elena. Plus, she was a total badass in this finale and basically saved everyone’s butts.

Episode Rating: 9.5/10

While not exactly as shocking as the penultimate episode, this final installment of The Boys season 2 is almost perfectly executed. It ties all the storylines building up all season and finishes in a frenzy of controlled chaos that changes the dynamics for nearly every character for upcoming arcs.

 

All episodes of The Boys season 2  is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video.


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Lorenz Bacani is a pop-culture enthusiast who's trying to watch as many good comic-book movies and TV shows as superhumanly possible. He received a bachelor's degree in Journalism and New Media at California Baptist University. Wrote for a news tabloid, worked for a couple of non-profits, and dabbled in some photography (mostly for Instagram purposes). He is probably currently binge-watching an old TV show for nostalgia.

Nancy Drew

Nancy Drew Review – Haunted Corpse (2×06)

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Nancy Drew The Riddle of the Broken Doll Season 2 Episode 6 Review

We’ve dealt with plenty of ghosts and unsettled spirits in Horsehoe Bay, but Nancy has opened up a whole new can of… demonic spirits. 

I thought that there couldn’t be anything scarier than Lucy Sable’s spirit, but I was dead wrong. The Lamia (don’t hold me accountable for the spelling on this one) was ten times more terrifying, and I think that has to do with the simple fact that he reminded me of the boy from The Grudge

It’s safe to say, I’ll be having plenty of nightmares of him popping out of Nancy’s kitchen cupboard. We knew they were building up to the moment, and yet, it still made me jump several feet in the air.

The Lamia was a direct-result of Nancy’s ambush on the Historical Society, in which she opened up all the vaults to find a way to save George and inadvertently released the most dangerous of spirits into town. 

The Lamia was the first, but absolutely not the last of the terrors coming their way. And if this is the first, I shudder to think what else is in store for our Drew Crew.

Thankfully, it looks they’re up for the challenge.  

When the episode picks up, it’s been two weeks since their battle with the Aglaeca where they declared victory and beat the curse. Everyone is kind of thriving in their post-survival reality, but looks can be deceiving. 

The moments of bliss and joy are short-lived, and the moment an opportunity presents itself to get involved in yet another supernatural mystery, everyone is game. Well, everyone except for Nick — he’s clearly the only sensible one. 

They were like “are we really ready to invite all this back into our lives?” and everyone was like “let’s do it!” No hesitation. 

It’s a much different tone than the one they had prior to facing the Aglaeca where they blamed Nancy for all their problems and for dragging them into the mess in the first place.

The demonic spirits inhabiting town may be Nancy’s fault, but  they all willingly decided to perform an autopsy on a haunted corpse as it gave them a “sense of purpose.”

Personally, I’d run the opposite way and let Nancy deal with the mess. I don’t have the stomach for cutting open aged corpses filled with occult symbols that randomly start to bleed fresh blood, but that’s precisely why I’m not part of the Drew Crew.

Nancy’s lucky to have a group that will get down and dirty with her… literally.  

Nancy was the only one who seemingly didn’t catch a break during the two spiritless weeks as she was arraigned for breaking into the morgue and punished with serving community hours in said morgue. That’s the true meaning of “ironic,” Alanis Morisette.

 And yet, there doesn’t seem to be a more fitting place for Nancy than the morgue. 

In case anyone was wondering why they were ever terrified of morgues, the clanking from one of the steel body fridges was a clear reminder. 

Again, a normal person would bolt upon hearing a knocking while alone with several dead bodies, but not Nancy. She opened up the body bag and pulled out the insects from the corpses’ mouth like it was no big deal!

The corpse ended up being an evil entity masquerading as a human (though, who really looked at that corpse and thought it was a human?!) that sought out children.

It was a nice addition to include to coroner’s son, Leo, as the child who was being protected by the spirit of the Lamia’s victim.

We haven’t seen children get sucked into the supernatural world, but realistically, children are more in-tune with these kinds of things and we usually just shrug them and their “imaginary friends” off the way Connor and Nancy did at first.

But in this case, Leo was actually talking to his action figure (not a doll!) and was trying to inform them about the dangers looming large. 

With Leo protected, the Lamia set its sights on George’s sisters, but Nancy followed through, as always, to save them from the monster’s grasp.

Nancy Drew The Riddle of the Broken Doll Season 2 Episode 6 Review

Nancy Drew — “The Riddle of the Broken Doll” — Image Number: NCD206c_0335r.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Tunji Kasim as Nick and Leah Lewis as George — Photo: Colin Bentley/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Honestly, all of the occurrences leading up to the Lamia’s attack were far more interesting than the attack itself, but that probably because we knew it would never actually do any harm to Ted and Charlie. 

It was fitting that they relied on the souls of the dead children for help while Horeshoe Bay was celebrating All Hallow Tide, a holiday that honored the dead.

By defeating the Lamia, they were able to honor and help 13 young souls finally find peace.

Maybe Nancy’s “accidental” act of releasing malevolent spirits from the Historical Society will pay off if they manage to vanquish them and help all trapped spirits move on.

The episode struck a good tone between comedic and creepy/gruesome. The series has managed to figure out how to not take itself so seriously while scaring the crap out of us simultaneously. It’s admirable. 

Everyone’s comedic timing was on-point, but per usual, Bess and Ace were the stars. 

Between Ace’s game night jokes and asking if the corpse followed Nany home, to Bess saying they should do the autopsy in the living room cause it’s more spacious than the kitchen and channeling Boxy to communicate with the kid — it was all so great.

Also, Nick has a terrible English accent. 

While it initially seemed like they put all of the Aglaeca drama behind them that wasn’t entirely the case. 

The Lamia was connected to a group of women who first called upon the Aglaeca, while George also had an encounter with her body-snatcher.  

Throughout the episode, George was also experiencing head rushes and lapses in memory, which audiences knew had to be related to the shroud that brought her back to life. 

I was right when I said the ghost staring back at her in the mirror after she was revived looked just like Odette. 

George came face-to-face with her in the bathroom, and it’s clear that she’s sharing a body with the ghostly spirit. But why?

Does Odette want to take over permanently? Does she want another chance at life? Why didn’t she just disappear peacefully into the night?

Will George remember this encounter?

At this point, supernatural cases seek Nancy out. She doesn’t even need to leave her house for a corpse to land at her feet! 

And that’s going to be even more true when she starts her part-time gig with Carson Drew. 

Finally, someone outside of the Drew Crew is acknowledging Nancy’s detective talents rather than shrugging them off as an annoyance. Carson is right to think that Nancy could be his secret weapon to winning cases as she’s the most clued-in person in town. 

Just imagine how much Det. Tamora could have benefitted from working with Nancy instead of forming a hostile relationship.

Connor experienced the supernatural occurrence first-hand, which strengthened his relationship with Nancy (and you know it’ll be helpful to have a friend at the morgue that she can ask for favors). I imagine if Tamora also witnessed something unexplainable, he’d be forced to believe Nancy’s involvement is more crucial than he’d like to admit. 

Are you ready to see the Drew dream team in action? Do you think Carson is ready to be exposed to the supernatural world?

What do you think their next threat is? And what’s going on with George?

Sound off in the comments below! 


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Riverdale

Riverdale Review – Mothman (5×06)

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Riverdale Back to School Review Season 5 Episode 6

 

You never truly get over the first day of school jitters, even seven years after you’ve graduated. 

Veronica, Betty, Archie, and Jughead returned to Riverdale High on Riverdale Season 5 Episode 6, but this time, they weren’t students, they were teachers. 

Archie was spearheading the RROTC, Jughead was teaching English, Veronica tackled Economics, while Betty handled Shop Class, which personally, I found to be the most interesting. I would’ve never pegged our sweet FBI recruit for a car gal.

Everyone was there to restore Riverdale to the great town that it once was, well, aside from all the murder.

But in a weird way, it’s almost as though they’ve never really grown up. 

This criticism is specific to Cheryl, who still seems way overly invested and possessive over the Vixens.

It’s a bit strange that she would get upset and jealous over Toni reviving the cheerleading squad when she had seven years to manage the team and hid out in Thornhill. 

But it’s obvious that this is how the show aims to bring back Cheryl to some sense of reality, and it’s better that she’s at least involved in the school functions rather than hiding in her mansion afraid of some made-up Blossom curse. 

If everyone is going to get a gig at the high school, it only makes sense that Cheryl and Toni return as co-HBIC’s.

Riverdale’s success went against Hiram’s plans to destroy the small-town, so he sent his goons from the Stonewall Prep football team to start a fire at the school and send a little message. 

But since Archie is never one to back down without a fight, he decided to revive Riverdale’s football team, the Bulldogs. 

I’ll admit that it was sad to see that the team, which has brought so much pride to town, was a “thing of the past.” However, with the right coach, it could be the town’s pride and joy once again.

Hope can go a long way. Hiram knows that, which is why he’ll do anything to see Riverdale fail.

Interestingly, we’ve yet again returned to the Hiram versus Archie Andrews dynamic. Archie will forever remain a thorn in his side. 

It’s also upsetting to see Reggie side with Hiram; he’s lost sight of everything that’s important. 

Riverdale Back to School Review Season 5 Episode 6

Riverdale — “Chapter Eighty-Two: Back To School” — Image Number: RVD506fg_0016r — Pictured (L-R): Drew Ray Tanner as Fangs Fogarty, Casey Cott as Kevin Keller, Chris Mason as Chad Gekko, Lili Reinhart as Betty Cooper and KJ Apa as Archie Andrews — Photo: The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Archie runs into a bit of trouble securing funding for the football team. He tries to play to “dead brother” card to Cheryl, but it doesn’t go well. 

Why do they think Cheryl has the money to singlehandedly fund the town? Even if she is selling fake art and passing it off as the original, it’s not her responsibility to dole out mounds of cash for the local high school.

He eventually resorts to asking Veronica for help, and if you thought it was weird asking your ex for $20K (even though she was more than happy to contribute to her beloved Bulldogs), just imagine how weird it is to get pushback from her overly jealous husband.

There were some cute moments between Ronnie and Chadwick, but ultimately, he’s a snake that’s controlling and doesn’t have Veronica’s best interests at heart.

He brought up doing nice things for her like singing karaoke and being nice to her friends as if they were some kind of chore or like he was doing her a favor to keep her happy. In a normal relationship, those are acts of love. 

It was the final straw – well, that and finding out that he’s been secretly chatting with Hiram – that convinced Veronica that they needed to take a break. 

Veronica was living a fake life in New York, but by returning to Riverdale, she once again remembered who she was and what mattered to her. 

She and Chadwick simply aren’t on the same wavelength.

However, I don’t want her and Archie to get back together in the near future either. 

Archie’s relationship with Betty is really growing on me; it’s refreshing and fun to watch. (More of my thoughts on that here!)

Of course, sneaking around when you’re in your mid-twenties should be a lot easier, but I’m not going to complain about that Titanic re-enactment in the car either.

Things between them are steamy. 

And if we were just to revert to the previous couples, hitting reset on the show would all be for nothing. 

Plus, there are definitely some sparks flying between Jughead and Tabitha Tate.

While the show never established how old Tabitha was, the fact that she made six-figures in Chicago and could have taken a CEO job at any point alludes to her being around the same age as Jughead. 

Initially, Tabitha was a little weary of Jughead, but he seems to have grown on her as she’s even offering to help him work on his story!

Aside from his brief interactions with Archie, Jughead spent much of the episode secluded from his old friend group and getting more familiar with his new boss. 

He interviewed Tabitha for his small-town story, but she did him a solid and set him up with Dreyfus, a local who told him his story of the Mothman, who kidnapped his friends working the mines and took them abroad some kind of ship. 

Yes, it sounds like folklore, but may I remind you that the mines are near Greendale, and we know that supernatural entities are in abundance there. (It’s a Chilling Adventures of Sabrina reference.)

Jughead’s investigation led him to the realization that all of Dreyfus’ friends that went on the ship passed away from cancer. Coincidence or is there something more awry at play?

He also mentioned that the ship was in the woods in a cave off the Lonely Highway… and you know what else was last seen on the Lonely Highway? Polly… three days ago. 

Is there a chance the mothman is connected to Polly’s (and Freaky’s) disappearance? My gut instinct tells me there is. 

Betty put her FBI training to use as she investigated what happened to Polly. She learned that Polly would frequent truck stops to sell Jingle Jangle and hook up with truckers (boy, did her life really take a turn!) using Nedlist (lol) to set up meetings. 

Betty tracked down the last trucker Polly arranged a meeting with (Truckerboy69… really?!), but he informed her that Polly ran off that night in a panic. 

Betty then turned to Alice for help and together, the sleuthing mom-and-daughter duo located a bunch of Polly’s things on the side of the road. She eventually decided to ping Polly’s phone, which likely should have been her first move. Betty, Kevin, and Alice then took look around the marsh area at night (because waiting till morning would have been too logical) and stumbled upon a corpse’s hand sticking out from the ground. Does it belong to Polly? We’ll have to wait to find out. 

In addition to that cliffhanger, Hiram also sent Archie yet another message by setting a fire all around the perimeter of his home. I guess the message was “don’t play with fire,” and look, I get that Hiram goes to extremes to get what he wants, but almost killing someone is a bit much, don’t you think?

Overall, it was an interesting episode that set up plenty of new mysteries for audiences while also taking a sentimental trip down memory lane by focusing most of its events around Riverdale High. 

Other Small Town Musings

  • Hiram loves Doritos… who knew?
  • It’s hard to do justice by “Shallow” but Veronica and Chadwick killed it!
  • Nana has really upped her fashion game! Also, how is she still alive?
  • There was a brief Chilling of Adventures crossover when Dorcas made an appearance as Cheryl’s art appraiser Minerva Marble.
  • Doris Bell is one little snitch! Keeping Cheryl informed about what happens at Riverdale High is one thing, but giving intel to Hiram? Not cute. 

What did you think of tonight’s episode of Riverdale? Are you enjoying the post-time jump reality?

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Superman & Lois

Superman & Lois Series Premiere Review – Hello, Smallville! (1×01)

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Superman makes his epic return to television… and Smallville, once again.

The CW reintroduces the well-known superhero to the Arrowverse lineup. This version of Clark Kent and Lois Lane first made their debut on Supergirl, but based on the pilot, it’s clear that Superman & Lois will allow Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch to explore the characters outside of the rushed and compact constraints of their sister-series (or cousin-series if you will). 

And when that happens – they soar to new heights!

Regardless of whether you’re a fan or not, Superman is a character we’re all familiar with through various comics, movies, animated shows, and TV dramas. But for the first time ever, we’re meeting a Clark Kent that’s hoping to be a father first and foremost.  

With family drama at the forefront, the show offers a much different experience than the other superhero dramas while also embracing a more character-driven narrative and a raw and unfiltered sincerity that’s much appreciated. 

Superman & Lois — “Pilot” — Image Number: SML101fg_0001r.jpg — Pictured: Tyler Hoechlin as Superman — Photo: The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved

For this Clark Kent, raising twin teenage boys – Jordan and Jonathan – is equally as important, if not more, than his responsibilities protecting the rest of the world.

It’s a side of Clark that hasn’t been explored much, which many fans have said was a “turn off” from tuning into the show.

And I’d agree, initially. My reaction to the trailer and premise was “ugh, teenagers, because, let’s be honest, the idea of a superhero juggling parental responsibilities doesn’t seem all that exciting on paper.

But surprisingly, it works really well as, maybe for the first time, it makes Superman more relatable and down-to-Earth. Alien abilities aside, he’s just a “meh” dad who regularly misses important family events and definitely has a favorite son.

He’s also accused of abandoning his hometown and raising privileged city teens who are far removed from the harsh and bleak realities of Smallville, which Sarah (the daughter of Clark’s high school sweetheart, Lana) sums up as “a sadness” with communities overrun with drug addiction. That’s briefly mentioned but not truly tackled in the pilot, so we’ll see if it comes into play in future episodes.

After getting fired from the Daily Planet (even Superman experiences job cuts and layoffs) and losing his beloved mother, Clark and Lois uproot their lives and leave Metropolis for the small-town appeal of Smallville, his childhood stomping grounds, where they plan to restart the farm and live a more low-key life.

Clark’s desire to be more dad and less Superman might not be what fans signed up for, but the action never takes a backseat despite his desire to be more present in the boys’ lives. 

The supersized pilot episode kicks off with an efficient montage that briefly sums up Clark and Lois’ history in a few minutes. It skips from his pod crashing in Smallville to the couple meeting for the first time at the Daily Planet to their wedding, and other milestone moments.

Their established and secure relationship allows us to move past the first-love and romantic struggles that tend to be at the forefront of other Arrowverse shows, and it’s refreshing to see a TV couple defy all odds and work together through the everyday problems that arise. 

However, this is still a CW series, so those soapy high-school romances you anticipate from every teen drama are centered around Jonathan and Jordan. For now, Jonathan seems to have a stable girlfriend at home (can’t see that one lasting), while Jordan makes a few missteps with Sarah. Do I smell a love-triangle brewing? At this point, I’m conditioned.

Superman & Lois — “Pilot” — Image Number: SML101a_0729r.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Alexander Garfin as Jordan Kent, Jordan Elsass as Jonathan Kent, Bitsie Tulloch as Lois Lane and Tyler Hoechlin as Clark Kent — Photo: Dean Buscher/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

The small-town, high-school aspect of the series strongly delivers on showrunner Todd Helbing’s desire to draw inspiration from shows like Friday Night Lights and Everwood, and it’s largely why it feels like a standalone series from its Arrowverse counterparts.

The twins are polar opposites; Jonathan is a star quarterback and all-around popular kid, while his brother, Jordan, feels like a loner and struggles with social anxiety disorder. 

And while they initially seem pigeon-hold into their roles, the series quickly breaks free from tired tropes and cliches as their performances gain depth and they emerge on their distinct paths.

Kent doesn’t waste any time filling in his son’s of his secret identity, though, it’s such a bummer to see the series play into the secret identity issue. I can understand others possibly not putting two-and-two together, but how inept do Jordan and Jonathan have to be in order to be fooled by some steel spectacles protecting the identity of the Man of Steel.

Parents get away with lying to their kids all the time, and with Jonathan’s extracurriculars, it’s more believable that he would be less perceptive of the situation, but since Jordan immediately picked up that something was off when they were nearly crushed to the death in the barn, you’d think he wouldn’t be fooled by a pair of glasses.

Initially, Clark isn’t interested in cluing his kids in about the truth and stripping them from their innocent childhood – after all, it’s a big secret to carry, and one slip up could cost them everything – but the barn incident is a catalyst as it establishes that one of the twins has powers just like their father. Even then, he’s hesitant about it until the twins confront him after finding the pod that brought him to Earth. 

Clark becomes a sort of mentor while the superpowers become a bit of a foil to “life’s lessons” for the teens finding their place and purpose in the world. 

Jordan struggles more than Jon, who can’t seem to figure out if being special is a good thing or if it makes him more of a freak.

Though, I do enjoy the idea of someone struggling with mental health and social anxiety disorder being painted as having superpowers. Heroes are always portrayed as flawless, but it’s about time that we explore the idea that a hero might not always wield confidence and courage right off the bat. 

Amidst the family drama, there’s a subplot that focuses on Superman’s latest armored foe, Captain Luthor. 

The action and fight scenes between these two deliver a blockbuster experience that almost feels too mature for The CW at times. There’s no denying that the visual-effects far excel what we’ve seen from other Arrowverse shows, and it elevates the experience to the point where it almost feels like you’re at the movies (if movies survive in the post-COVID world). 

While there’s nothing new about the Luthor and Superman rivalry, this Luthor is unlike the ones we’ve come across before. For starters, he’s traded in his tux for a metal suit that allows him to compete with the likes of Superman. What do you think his deal is?

Superman & Lois — “Pilot” — Image Number: SML101a_0153r2.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Alexander Garfin as Jordan Kent and Jordan Elsass as Jonathan Kent — Photo: Dean Buscher/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.

Embracing a longer-form arc with a compelling villain rather than doling out the disposable case-of-the-week villain is refreshing, as is avoiding the “group of computer nerds waiting to help the hero” trope.

It’s yet another way the series aims to carve a distinct path. 

Sam, the general at the DOD, seems to be the only one in Superman’s corner, and that’s because he’s personally connected to him – he’s Lois Lane’s father and Clark Kent’s father-in-law. Let’s keep it in the family!

The series is called Superman AND Lois for a reason – Lois is a hero in her own regard. 

She’s not just in her husband’s shadow or reduced to taking care of the kids in his absence; she has her own career as a successful and inspiring journalist.

After Morgan Edge buys the Daily Planet and sets his sights on Smallville, something doesn’t smell right to Lois and she vows to do something about it.

Edge and Kyle, Lana’s husband, both strike the note of “villain.”

Despite being a necessary counterpoint to Lois, Kyle defends Edge and believes his interest in the town will provide some necessary job creation. It’s a socio-economic sub-plot that I find myself engrossed in considering how it relates to our current realities. 

The pilot isn’t groundbreaking, but it does leave plenty of potential for the future by introducing compelling and dynamic characters and villains, stunning visuals, and a relatable family that just so happens to have superpowers.

The mature yet simultaneously teen-focused approach is a nice change of pace and sets the scene for a series that’s grounded and knows exactly what it wants to be – something entirely different from what we’ve seen thus far in the Arrowverse orbit.

Superman’s mass appeal and the rural setting, reminiscent of the previous Smallville (originally on The WB before going to The CW), will also work in its favor. 

Alert the Smallville Gazette – we have a hit on our hands! 


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