This weekend, I’m proud to announce that I have teamed up with the DCTV Podcast network to launch their newest bi-weekly show: DCTV Classics, where we will be reminiscing about iconic and classic TV shows such as The Adventures of Superman, Batman ’66, Wonder Woman, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, Smallville, Batman: The Animated Series, and more.
I’ve been sitting on this post for a while now, but with today’s news that Superman will actually appear next season on Supergirl, I figured now would be as good a time as any to explain why I think veteran TV Superman Tom Welling should don the red cape once again (for the first time?) and officially welcome Kara to The CW, the network Smallville launched a decade ago.
“But Smallville and Supergirl are two separate, incompatible continuities!” I know. I know. But hear me out: Supergirl is the perfect opportunity to get Welling back on The CW in the one role he deserves (but may or may not need right now): Superman.
“The Runaway Dinosaur” is a children’s book that our Flash’s mom used to read to him when he was younger about a lost dinosaur. Our Barry-saur is also lost, but in a place we’ve only been in passing: in the Speed Force. I think. What kind of noun is the Speed Force, anyways? Only Kevin Smith, the director of this episode, knows.
Five years ago today, Smallville ended its historic ten-year run on The CW, fka The WB. At the time, it was the longest running genre series on-air and is still the longest running superhero series in television history. It’s hard to believe now, when superheroes have completely permeated popular culture, but Smallville’s popularity was a rarity in the early 2000s. The current incarnation of The CW — which after the acquisition of Supergirl from CBS should just rename itself DCTV — owes a great debt to the Superman origin story shepharded by Into the Badlands creators Al Gough and Miles Millar. (FYI, Craig Byrne, founder of Kryptonsite — the definitive Smallville destination on the internet, penned a must-read retrospective of the series at Collider).
My name is Barry Allen, and I am the saddest man alive. The title of the episode is “Back to Normal,” but this is not the normal Barry Allen that we met on Arrow years ago. He hates buses and putting on clothes and when his coffee cup breaks, he looks like he’s going to burst into tears.
When the powers that be at Warner Brothers and CBS finally acquiesced and greenlit a Supergirl/Flash crossover, I wonder if they were intentional about airing it the Monday after Batman v Superman’s opening weekend? Because after two-and-a-half hours worth of self-serious grimdark, it was such a relief to see DC superheroes who actually, you know, enjoy being superheroes.
I didn’t hate Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice. I walked into the theater last night fully expecting to hate it. Two and a half hours later, I ended up merely not liking it. That’s progress, I guess?
That said, there were a couple things I actually liked (most having to do with Gal Gadot’s Wonder Woman) and I can’t deny that Ben Affleck looks like Batman (even though he sure doesn’t act like him). But the thing that distracted me throughout the movie was the fact that it contained a lot of elements that were executed better in other live action adaptations.
Sixteen episodes in to the first season of Supergirl and I should probably learn not to underestimate the show. You see, prior to the airing of last week’s Red Kryptonite-influenced episode, titled “Falling,” I assumed we would be getting filler between stronger episodes. Boy, was I wrong! Seeing Melissa Benoist channel Bad Supergirl might be some of my favorite moments all season. It also doesn’t hurt that after the previous episode’s many homages to Smallville and other past Super history, the show kicked it up a notch this week.
After taking a week off, Supergirl returns with an all-new episode on CBS tonight. The episode that aired two weeks ago — simply named “Solitude” — was probably the most easter egg-packed episode of the season. Rather than a traditional recap of the events, I’m just going to geek out over all the cool nods to past Super-lore, including and especially call backs to Smallville since former Supergirl Laura Vandervoort was guest starring. Which is basically what I did while live-tweeting anyway.
It’s no secret we’re big fans of The CW’s shared universe of DC superheroes. Arrow and Flash are two of the only shows we still livetweet and recap on a regular basis (shout out Connie and Christelle!) and this season — though it’s on CBS and not (yet) connected — we’ve thrown Supergirl into the mix as well. Of course all of these shows are now on their annual holiday break and won’t return until January. But when they do, they’ll be joined by a new kid on the block, Legends of Tomorrow.