Smallville Final Season Report Card: B-

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Our assessments of some of this season's offerings from The CW have delivered verdicts ranging from pretty good (The Vampire Diaries) to not so much (90210).

Landing somewhere in between, we now take a quick look at the network's longest running series, Smallville, as we continue with our 2010-2011 Season Report Cards.

Smallville Promotional Poster

Best Character: We love Clark and recognize the show is about his journey, but this season we fell more in love with his soul mate, Lois Lane, than ever before. Erica Durance brought out a maturity and vulnerability in this final season which had us running through every emotion on the spectrum. Whenever Clark was ready to give up on himself, she was right there, serving as a powerful tether to his destiny. Even when she doubted herself and their future together, Lois never gave up on the hero he was yet to become. Without her at his side, Clark may never have taken that final step toward standing for truth and justice. As iconic as the Man of Steel himself, Lois Lane's last year in Smallville proved that behind every great man, there's an even better woman. 

Worst Character: It's difficult to pinpoint a weak one among the cast of regulars, so we chose to select one of the recurring characters: Lionel Luthor. His reappearance in season ten felt awkwardly injected back into the story and didn't bring anything new to this long-weary character. All his presence did was leave us with a feeling of "so what else is new?" 

Best Episode: Can we really go with anything other than "Finale?" Despite a few things we would have preferred to see handled differently, it ultimately delivered a satisfying and nostalgic end to the ten year jaunt. With the long awaited return of Michael Rosenbaum as Lex Luthor, an unequivocal answer to the question of Tess' loyalty, Martha and Jonathan Kent reunited (even if unconventionally), a Jimmy Olsen cameo, enough CLois sweetness to induce cavity, and Clark (finally) gaining the ability to fly just before brandishing his family crest in its most well known form, "Finale" made ten years feel like it had flown by in a matter of days.

Worst Episode: "Fortune." Oliver "Drag" Queen. Enough said.

Character Most Deserving of a Spin-Off: We mostly think The CW is missing a fairly hefty boat by not creating a Justice League series, spinning off Green Arrow, Black Canary, Impulse, Aquaman, Cyborg and Stargirl into their own ensemble series, but we're also of the mind that Booster Gold deserves some type of spinoff treatment all his own. Eric Martsolf brought the oft-mocked character to life with the hotdogging cockiness we expected, but then handed us a servile humanity that we didn't. While Blue Beetle didn't exactly rock our world in the same episode, we think Booster gave enough reason why a series built around he and Skeets would be…er…gold.

The Doomsday Effect Award For Imposing Villain Turned Feeble Foe: Oh the chills we got when Darkseid first appeared atop the Daily Planet building in the season premiere, promising to give us Clark's most formidable opponent yet! Instead, we had a glimpse here, a glimpse there, flaccid encounters with his three cronies, and then a final confrontation that contained all the ferocity of a hiccup. While production budget may have had an impact on the ability to have Darkseid battle Clark in a more profound way, we're miffed he didn't get to use his Omega Beams even once. Even Doomsday had a better run in season eight, and he came off like a World Wrestling reject.

The Final Redemption Award: Although the fandom has had a love-hate relationship with Tess Mercer over the years, we never doubted her for a second! Well, that's mostly true. Since she first learned Clark's secret, we'd been hoping she would stay on the side of truth and justice and with her final act to thwart Lex and preserve Clark's secret she made it clear once and for all that her place would forever rest on the side of the heroes; a fitting and appropriate end to her character. Cassidy Freeman left an indelible mark on this series that, for a time, made us forgive the absence of Michael Rosenbaum. Almost.

Overall Grade: B-. We're liable to get flack over that, but while overall the series ended in a place of contentment, the season had its rough spots. If there had been more focus on the Darkseid saga and fewer tangential efforts ("Isis," "Fortune") we might have been a little more forgiving. That doesn't mean we aren't still going through wads of Kleenex over the fact that we won't get to spend anymore time in Smallville. Ah, if only it could continue on as Metropolis. Sigh.

Jeffrey Kirkpatrick is a TV Fanatic Staff Writer. Follow him on Twitter.


I love Lois and Clark and Oliver and Cloe (whatever the name is spelled) did you put on at five a.m. because it was no good. I always thought Tess,
Lex's sister was terrible, now she is on Vampire Diarie and is much better. I did not like her father, Lex nor her brother. But I think there ought to be made a show for Lois and Clark/Superman and Oliver/Green Arrow and Cloe........honestly, really and put it on at a MUCH BETTER TIME PLEASE.


Things happened so quickly in season 10! I didn't mind an eleventh season at all. More time for the producers to elaborate on the episodes... :-)


Just watching the final season. I just wish the music soundtrack wasn't so loud !!!!


I feel so much happier now I udernsatnd all this. Thanks!


fitting finale just a shame that tess had to die


For me, Season 10 sucked overall. There were a few good episodes, like Homecoming and Ambush, but the majority of them were beyond abysmal. The fact that Tess Mercer was the only character to get any sort of development was a major part of why the final season stank on ice. So long Smallville, I wish I could have missed you more.


@jeffery Kirkpatrick well that's a revisionist choice if ever i heard one. you only didn't like the return of john glover because you never liked lionel luthor. considering how uncompliemtary you were towards Kat Grant, i don't know why you picked her. as for Lionel Luthor? 'It made his comeuppance via Tess all the more sweet' Now you MIGHT have meant, 'i don't think the return of lionel was smart' but what it says, is i hate lionel because he's so evil and i loved when tess beat him. sounds like that was complimentary, as in HELLO you're supposed to hate him!! you went on and one about how you liked tess's interactions with him, and how it made her seem were they meant to do that without lionel?
'When John Glover appeared to break the fourth wall during the final seconds with his remark that he returned just in time to see how it all ends, I came 'this' close to needing to change my shorts. He can play one intimidating bad guy, I'll give him that.' woah, step back; that almost sounded complimentary...oh wait, that's because it was! your hatred for lionel appeared to be the hatred of an entertaining villian- not once did you say he was boring, or what else is new? you can backtrack all you want and say now those comments meant that, but it sure doesn't seem like in the context of your ratings and the entire review


Best Character: Agreed, Lois Lane. Its obvious that Peterson and Souders has screwed up by only having Erica in 12 episodes in season 8. She should have been in all episodes from that season on. I do want to give props to Michael Ironside(Gen. Sam Lane). To bad they never had him in a recurring role.
Worst Character: I'm going to go with Kara(Supergirl). Not her fault, but what a waste of screen time for her. Was that the best they could do for her last time on Smallville...By having her in a cave!
Best Episode: Finale was far from it and not by a disappointment of a few things, but by the disappointment of almost everything. Homecoming was perfect, from the comedy of Lois Lane, to Braniac, to the spider guy, to them finally saying I love you and to my favorite...the flying scene. I didn't leave that episode wishing I would have scene this or that.
Worst Episode: Fortune was a highlight. I like it when they do comedy. I've really enjoyed all episodes where the cast got to do comedy. KENT was the worst for me. 1 episode of the alternate world was enough. It was a pointless episode. I could have done w/o LUTHOR if it wasn't for them bring Lionel back and him delivering that last line about not wanting to miss how it all ends.
Character most deserving of a Spin-off: My choice is Metallo(Brian Austin Green). I would love to have a villain spin off. I really enjoyed him in season 9.
The Doomsday effect award was right on. Season 10 really lacked that constant bad guy. They've had Lex, Braniac, and Davis Bloom(Doomsday) in the past but this season it really was pretty weak from head to toe when it came to bad guys. I would have like to have seen Toyman or Granny Goodness as a constant villain.
Overall Grade: C-. I'm being generous. This season was filled with good/great moments in almost every episode but this season lacked great/good episodes. This is by far the worst season of Smallville which deserves major deductions b/c it is the last season. It should have been the best or darn close. This season had a lot of things building up in it. Darkseid - built up to what...Lionel Luthor? Leading up to a a Marriage that never happened. Not even 7 years down the road. And finally, Clark becoming Superman. In a way, he did...but not the way that 99% of the fans wanted him too...and that was with Tom wearing the suit. A full frontal shot of him being Superman. Not a CGI blur.


Totally agreed - it really was Lois LAne's season - when she pulled that gun on Tess and fought for her hero - best Lois Lane ever


WHAT! this is not only ridiculous, and inconsistent. in your reviews for the episodes when lionel was back you gave them at least 4 out of 5 starr. You even said that even though you hate Lionel, you loved both Luthor and Scion, saying it's 'a testament to his acting ability.' do you even read over your own reviews?! how can you praise a character throughot the season and then randomly be like, yeah...didn't like him. I think the ONLY issue with this season was some of the episodes' themes (isis, fortune) would have been better in other seasons, but couldn't have been , because of the engagment etc. But if you watch them as stand-a-lone episodes, they're good fun. Plus, how can you resists an emil/tess drunk duet? I also had no problem with Darkseid- the whole point is Clark's journey- NOT the villian. He was able to defeat Darkseid easily in the end because he could: Superman HAS no darkness. at least a B+ or an A. And please in future, consistency in how you review!

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