Due to the ongoing pandemic, television has looked a little different with how productions film and release their shows, and Superman & Lois is no exception. Many of the Arrowverse shows had started and stopped through the entire 2020-2021 television season because filming under the new protocols for safety is taking much longer than anticipated. At least, that was the reason given when Superman & Lois went on a three-week hiatus with only two episodes left to their freshman season. But finally this past Tuesday the finale aired, and boy do I have some thoughts.
SPOILER WARNING for the finale of Superman and Lois Season 1 below!
Overall, the season was strong for the first outing of the newest Arrowverse show with strong performances from Tyler Hoechlin and Bitsie Tulloch as Clark Kent and Lois Lane respectively. However, the entire cast gave incredible performances over the fifteen episodes. That being said, the final episode left a lot to be desired. There were a few great action scenes and some parts that brought tears to my eyes, but compared to earlier episodes it felt slow and boring in places. Of course, Superman did defeat the bad guy in the end, and in true CW fashion, the episode ended on a cliffhanger.
As the family gathers to say goodbye to John Henry Irons (Steel) played by Wolé Parks, a small metallic ship crashes out of the sky right in from the Kent farmhouse. As the lid opens and smoke flows out of the ship, a teenage girl (Tayler Bucks) steps out of the ship and greets Iron, who is her father. However, looking over his shoulder as they embrace, her mouth drops open as recognition of Lois dawns on her face. “Mom?” She utters as the entire Kent family looks on with worried faces. This moment felt like it’s bound to have huge ramifications for season two. Though not for whatever villain or mystery there is, but instead because of the impact it will have on the heart of the show.
Earlier in the season, we did discover that Irons was from a parallel earth where he was married to Lois Lane and Superman was a villain who killed Lois during his destruction of Metropolis. In that other world, Lois and Irons had a daughter, who he thought he lost in the crisis when he ended up on Earth-Prime. Throughout the season he spoke extensively about the pain of being around the woman he loved and seeing her with someone else. This was the main reason for leaving Kansas to find his next adventure. Although with the reintroduction of his daughter, will that mean Irons will stay around for a bit longer?
I feel bad for all the characters that are involved in this terrible situation. Natalie Irons, the girl in the ship, knows her mother is dead, though seeing her married to the face of the person who murdered her must be incredibly confusing to someone so young. That and the desire to be close again with someone you lost will be a strong force and motivator for Natalie in the next season. Or at least I would believe so.
On the flip side, even though Natalie isn’t technically her daughter, knowing Lois, she will feel some type of responsibility to care for or help Natalie through the process of adjusting to the new reality. As well, I could see this new dynamic between Lois and her “daughter” impacting relationships with her husband and twin sons (Jordan Elsass and Alex Garfin). The twins have struggled with adjusting to their new life in Smallville and have just started showing signs of liking their new normal. What will add a sibling due to their emotions and the family?
As well, what will this new complication do to the relationship between Hoechlin’s Clark Kent and Parks’ Henry Irons? They began the season as adversaries due to Superman’s actions on the other world, though over time Irons began to trust Clark. Which was due in part to Lois’s love and belief in Clark’s humanity. At the end of the season, the two seemed friendly as they worked together to save the world. Though with Natalie’s crash landing, could that delicate relationship change for the worse?
Natalie Irons’s counterpart in the comics is Natasha Irons, who follows in her father’s footsteps and becomes a superhero. She is the second person to take up the mantle of Steel and fights along with Superman or the Teen Titans frequently. Could we see Buck suit up in the second season? It would be an interesting dynamic. Similar to Jordan’s (Garfin) powers emerging and learning from his father how to control them and become the hero of tomorrow. Iron could continue to mentor his daughter like shown in flashbacks and one day encouraging her to fight along with him and the Supermen against whatever challenge comes next.
I think that the first half of the season will be finding a newer normal for both family units. I think there is a balance that can exist where they all live together and co-exist without too much problem and confusion. However the growing pains will be ever-present as they adjust, which is to be expected from any CW superhero show. As well, the reemergence of Natalie Irons poses an interesting thought that may open the door to new and exciting possibilities. And also more threats. If she can return from a world that no longer exists, who else can show up? Perhaps the next big bad is somewhere among the stars waiting to crash into this planet and bring destruction to Smallville, Metropolis, and the entire world.
Superman & Lois is currently streaming on the CW app. Look for season two in early 2022.