Can ‘Superman and Lois’ live up to Margot Kidder’s legacy?
Even since Tyler Hoechlin (Teen Wolf) first appeared back in Supergirl season two as Clark Kent/Superman, fans of the character have been clamoring for a Superman series based on the interpretation of the character. When Bitsie Tulloch (Grimm) was cast as Lois Lane in the 2018 Elseworlds crossover, fans were delighted by the chemistry between the pair and speculation of a spinoff series was fueled.
Though, people did wonder just how this version of the iconic DC comics couple will be different from other iterations. We have the George Reeves Superman films, the Christopher Reeves Superman films along with TV series such as Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman and, of course, Smallville.
One is that the duo is going to be parents in The CW series. Though if you think that Lois and Clark will be changing diapers, then clearly you don’t remember how Crisis on Infinite Earths combined a couple of Earths into one and with it came some changes. One of the biggest changes as we learned is that Clark and Lois’ baby son Jonathan is no longer a baby or an only child.
Per Deadline, Jordan Elsass (Little Fires Everywhere) will play Jonathan Kent, who is described as “clean-cut, modest and kind-hearted, with an aw-shucks attitude that somehow doesn’t seem dated.”
Alexander Garfin (The Peanuts Movie) will play Jonathan’s twin brother, Jordan, who is described as “wildly intelligent, but his mercurial temperament and social anxiety limit his interactions with people, and consequently, Jordan prefers to spend most of his free time alone, playing video games.”
While we have a good idea just how Superman and Lois will differ from previous incarnations of the character, there is still a lot for Hoechlin and Tulloch to live up to in terms of, well, those great performances that came before it. So let’s take a look at some of the best Lois and Clark acts of the past to see the legacy of the characters.
No duo will probably be better or more fondly remembered in the pop-culture consciousness for the portrayal of Clark and Lois than Christopher Reeves and Margot Kidder. There was just something about their chemistry.
Reeves made both Clark and Superman distinct from each other that, yeah, you could believe a pair of glasses would make a worthy disguise. Kidder brought Lois into the present day by making her into the tough-talking, hard-nosed, liberated and witty reporter we all know and love to this day.
The duo just revitalized the coupling into something fresh and new. Elements of that revitalization spilled over into comics and future media based on the Superman property. Though, dear Rao, we wanted those two to get together and stay together.
Even if things, um, got a little weird by Superman IV. (But hey, at least Jon Cryer would redeem himself from that mess of a movie by playing Lex Luthor on Supergirl.)
Superman Returns (2006)
Participation of director Bryan Singer and actor Kevin Spacey in the 2006 quasi-sequel to the 70s franchise may not have aged great, but Brandon Routh and Kate Bosworth did a great job in Superman Returns. While Routh got a chance to do a victory lap in Crisis on Infinite Earths, the chemistry between the pair was fantastic to watch. Routh truly was a great but unappreciated Superman. So we’re glad that he got a chance to say goodbye properly.
Botsworth also had a nice edge to her Lois Lane, who battled between feeling betrayed at Superman/Clark’s departure from Earth while trying to do the best for her son and her future. Some didn’t like the love triangle in the film, but you can feel her conflictedness over her heart and her head.
Superman: The Animated Series (1996-2000)
While overshadowed by the darker and broodier Batman: The Animated Series, there is a lot to like about what Superman: The Animated Series brought to the table. Honestly, we would not be surprised if Bruce Timm’s animated universe was in the minds of the Arrowverse architects when creating the shared world.
Tim Daly (Private Practice) as Clark Kent/Superman and Dana Delany (Body of Proof) as Lois Lane were a great double act. There was a lot of witty banter, romantic tension, and just a truly great chemistry between the two. Definitely one of the underrated interpretations of the characters.
Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (1993-1997)
Over the years Lois & Clark has definitely fallen into more of a “cult classic” sort of status. Honestly? You don’t hear a lot of talk about the series anymore. (Possibly due to how Dean Cain turned out.) Teri Hatcher and Dean Cain both did excellently when the series was airing in the 90s. If there was a series for Superman & Lois to possibly emulate, then it will probably be this one.
While Superman parts of the series were important, what was truly important was the relationship between Lois and Clark. It was the romance that kept audiences tuning in week after week along with the thrilling heroics. Bring that to the forefront along with family dynamics to Superman & Lois, the CW series will definitely be doing something new.
Of course, we were going to mention Smallville. Without Smallville would we even have an Arrowverse? Possibly not. Erica Durance and Tom Welling brought Lois and Clark to life in some pretty thrilling ways in the series. Without the veil of Superman between the two, the famed love story went into some new and interesting directions over the years. At the heart of it was Clark’s own struggle between his heritage and his humanity.
It was to see Clark and Lois’ happily ever after in Crisis on Infinite Earths, which was well-deserved after a decade of television. Hopefully, Hoechlin and Tulloch will bring that sort of intimacy that Durance and Welling developed to the forefront of the new series.
Superman & Lois will air during the 2020-2021 television season on The CW.