Created by: Alfred Gough, Miles Millar
Cast: Tom Welling, Michael Rosenbaum, Kristin Kreuk, Allison Mack, John Glover, Annette O’Toole, Erica Durance, Justin Hartley
Synopsis: This season has a typically thrilling opening, with Clark escaping the Phantom Zone, and proceeding to defeat the spirit of Zod, currently inhabiting the body of Lex. He succeeds in defeating Zod without killing his rival, but his escape has released a number of phantoms into our reality, the MacGuffin for the season. We are also introduced to Oliver Stone, The Green Arrow, and find out he is forming a team which he thinks should have “Justice” in the title. In addition, we also meet the Martian Manhunter.
For me, Smallville has overall remained entertaining from its inception, but with the season it really takes some brilliant strides forward, especially in tying the story of a high school student from Krypton meeting his eventual destiny with which the audience should be very familiar. These 22 episodes throw in a lot more Superman lore than many of the previous ones, and is all the stronger for it.
In many ways, there is actually less of a focus on Clark and his emotional dilemma of how to fit in to society with his amazing powers (though a few key episodes bring this back into focus quite wonderfully), with an element of him accepting responsibility for his actions (the phantoms) and more willing to accept his role in using his powers for good. His emotional story arc is tied up with his feelings for Lana, especially following the announcement of her pregnancy and pending nuptials to Lex. This was perhaps the one weak part of the season. It really does feel like the writers simply ran out of things to do with Lana. Her relationship with Lex never feels natural, and given the level of suspicion she has, it seems more realistic she would have left him very early on, given she broke up with Clark for similar reasons. In the last few episodes, she does return to once again be a strong character, which makes this lapse feel all thew more unfortunate.
The regular peripheral characters outside the main trio all get some really good stories. Chloe discovers she has a latent meteor power, though what it will manifest itself as remains unclear for most of the season. Her inclusion in the Justice League as Watchtower is also a treat for fans. Lois is evolving into the intrepid reporter of Superman lore we all know, and a few clever seeds are planted for her future relationship with Clark. Martha is getting closer to Lionel, and yet she remains fiercely independent, with a clear focus on still being available for Clark. With husband Jonathon gone, she remains Clark’s strongest moral compass. Lionel himself remains an interesting character, apparently a friend after his commune with Jor-El, and yet still capable of some seemingly very villainous acts.
What really makes this season pop though is the inclusion of Hartley as Oliver Queen, entering the scene already established as the Green Arrow. Quite cleverly, he proves a very interesting foil for Lex, them both having attended the same High School. It illustrates how similar privileges can have vastly different results. His inclusion also provided the opportunity to re-introduce characters already introduced previously, including Aquaman, Flash, and Cyborg, and for the Justice League. It is very clear that this will have a major impact on subsequent seasons.
The conclusion is fittingly exciting, dropping some very major hints as to what the next season will contain. Quite happily, I have my copy of season 7 ready to be viewed, so I will save the spoiler for then!
4.5 stars out of 5
Smallville on IMDB
Smallville Season 6 trailer
Smallville Season 6 opening credits