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the film criticism aspect of cyber | by maryann johanson

Smallville: The Complete First Season (review)

If you thought there was nothing new to be found in the Superman story, think again. This powerful reimagining of the tale of the alien child adopted by human parents who becomes the Man of Steel steps us back in time to explore Clark Kent’s teenage years, and the metaphor — discovering superpowers as the awakening into adulthood — is remarkably apt. Part of fun comes in watching a story we already know in the grand scheme unfold in deliciously detailed slow motion: here’s a Clark (Tom Welling) who can’t yet fly; here’s Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum: Sweet November), son of a wealthy Metropolis businessman who strikes up an odd friendship with Clark; here’s Lana Lang (Kristin Kreuk), with whom Clark is desperately in love. And here’s Lana’s pretty green necklace, made from a piece of a meteor that accompanied Clark to Earth; we know it’s kryptonite, even if Clark doesn’t know why it makes him weak in the knees, and the necklace becomes all about the strongest of guys realizing that a gal can make him vulnerable. This is a striking production, a poignant portrayal of painful adolescence featuring an unexpectedly wonderful John Schneider as the adoptive father whom Clark is so eager to live up to and fears he can’t, despite his strange abilities. Extras include commentaries of select episodes by writer-producers Alfred Gough and Miles Millar, deleted scenes, and a virtual tour of the town of Smallville.


MPAA: not rated

viewed at home on a small screen

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