Superman & Lois S1 Ep 10, ‘O Mother, Where Art Thou?’ has aired, giving us a thrilling episode and some great callbacks to the comics!
In this Superman & Lois S1 Ep 10, Clark learns some startling revelations about Morgan Edge’s true origins, and saves the town (and maybe the world) from an onslaught of reborn Kryptonians! Meanwhile, Sarah learns the truth about her dad, and a little more of the truth behind The Kent boys.
Spoilers are ahead so if you haven’t seen this one, stop and watch it before reading, it’s worth the pay off!
Right off the bat, we get a superpower fight scene between Superman and Edge, now revealed to be Superman’s older half brother Tar-Ro. Ro is the son of Superman’s mother and her first “husband” Zeta-Ro, from a passionless pre-ordained Kryptonian union, before she met and fell in love with Jor-El. Zeta-Ro had apparently learned of Krypton’s impending destruction from Lara, and sent Tar to earth as a child, where he was met with fear and hostility. One of these flashbacks includes an underground hallway which looks uncannily similar to a 33.1 facility from the Smallville show, but it might just be a coincidence and not a homage. I am a little weary of Superman having more and more family members having survived Krypton’s explosion along with him, especially since we keep inventing new ones. Here’s hoping this character is a worthy addition to the pantheon.
During the fight between Superman and Ro, Ro uses the choice word “Eradicated,” which as any 90’s Superman fan knows is an extremely loaded term, filling us with hope for an appearance by one of Superman’s greatest villains! And we didn’t have to wait long for the pay off, because in the very next scene at the Fortress of Solitude, Jor-EL confirms that the device we’ve seen in previous episodes attached to the evil MRI machine is indeed the Eradicator device! The device is performing a function only recently introduced to the character in Peter Tomasi and Patrick Gleason’s run on Superman in 2016, in which the Eradicator is revealed to be, among other things, a repository for Kryptonian consciousnesses. They’ve done a splendid job of bringing the device to life on the screen, definitely taking heavy inspiration from the original design in the comics, while updating it with a Snyder’s Man of Steel aesthetic. I for one couldn’t be happier with it’s inclusion and design. It can only mean that the fully formed Eradicator will soon follow in coming seasons!
Speaking of the Jor-El scene, we’re back here again with some omniscient Jor-El potholes. So Jor-El knows everything there is to know about Kryptonian human hybrids developing never before experienced powers in the future on a world he’s never been to, but when it comes to ACTUAL Kryptonian science that he’s likely held in his very hands like the Eradicator device, he’s clueless? Come on!
Back on The Kent farm, Lois and Clark brief Lana on the situation after her husband has been revealed as possessed by a psycho Kryptonian. It’s here they decide to capture Edge’s head scientist, a man known as none other than Dabney Donovan! My friends, not reading 90’s Superman comics and watching this show is like never having watched the Clone Wars before watching the Mandalorian, you’re just missing so much! As any good 90’s fan knows, Dabney Donovan in the comics is one of the lead scientists at Cadmus labs, and a chief architect in the birth of Superman’s clone, Conner Kent, AKA Superboy!
For those of you keeping track at home, we have John Henry Irons, the Eradicator, and a possible reference to Superboy! Are we getting Reign of the Supermen in live action!? Will we get a Superman / Supergirl / Superboy Team-Up? And since Conner Kent is rocking the black T-shirt look in HBO’s Titans series, does that mean we’ll get leather jacket Superboy in this show!?!? These are the questions we must have answered!
We learn that unlike in the comics, the Eradicator device in this show was created by Superman’s birth mother Lara Lor-Van (Another LL), and in order to get the specifics on how to reverse the Eradicator’s effects, they’ll need to get the information from her directly. This is done by using the Eradicator to implant Lara’s consciousness into a willing volunteer, which will turn out to be Lana Lang. Now, I know this is a great budget saving trick, just having your existing cast be “possessed” by another character, but I, for one, am sick to death of this. This was a CONSTANT trope in Smallville, and it’s been used by multiple CW Superhero shows again and again over the years. Please, please, can we not? If we can’t cast someone to actually be this character, please, let’s just tell a different story. I think this trick is well worn out, it’s cheesy, and it can sometimes degrade the quality of story telling. With that said it did add some additional stakes to the story, as Lois and Clark have a very established relationship with Lana.
There’s a great scene in Superman & Lois S1 Ep 10, where Jonathan stands up to Sam Lane, calling him out on his lies and double standards, saying “can’t you just act like a normal person for once instead of a soldier?” After which, General Lane softens and supports his grandson. This is another surprisingly likable moment for General Lane, and I really like the direction they’re taking on this character, making him more like his previous comic book appearances as a sub-par father in a crusty shell but with a soft interior, as opposed to the out and out villain he became in the late 00’s through the teens. Another great moment is when Lana Lang nervously swoons after seeing Superman in real life as opposed to just on TV. Great moment.
We get a reference to Superman’s solar flare power introduced in the New 52, though the execution of said power doesn’t really look anything like what it did in the comics, so I’m not sure if it was a direct reference to that power (though it seemed to have a similar effect on Superman afterward), or just a term used by the show.
The final battle has some epic visual effects shots, some of which copy what’s been done in Man of Steel, but this is by no means a bad thing. I think Man of Steel established a great new visual language for displaying Superman’s powers in live action, and I’m glad to see them using it. We also got some great comic book style shot framing in scenes where all the possessed Kryptonians attack Superman in the sky, it looked very stylized and very cool.
All in all, Superman & Lois S1 Ep 10 gives us a fast paced thrilling conclusion to much of the show’s recent arc, while giving 90’s comic fans some amazing references to hype over. There are amazing Superman action scenes and I cannot tell you how blown away I am with the quality of this series.