Smallville: Season 3

Smallville: Season 3



With the opening of Smallville: Season 3 it was Clark that needed saving, a nice little twist of events to keep the series fresh





Smallville: Season 3

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For two seasons Clark Kent (Tom Welling) experimented with his newly found super powers and week after week saved his friends.

With the opening of the third season it was Clark that needed saving, a nice little twist of events to keep the series fresh. Clark had come into contact with a high school ring that contained red kryptonite. Unlike its green counterpart that was deadly to Clark, the red form removed all inhibitions and drove the young superhero to the dark side of life. This ushered in a season of changes for Clark and those around him. Lana Lang (Kristin Kreuk) finally saves Clark, brings him back and the romance that has smoldered under the surface for two years begins to blossom. Meanwhile, Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum) survives a plot to kill him and begins open hostilities with his father Lionel (John Glover). This is also a season of changes for Clark’s parents Martha (Annette O'Toole) and Jonathan (John Schneider). While the first two seasons had them more on the peripheral, now many story lines bring them into the center of the action.

Since Superman represents one of the most beloved modern mythologies of America, the writers are constraint to keep some aspects of the story and balance this with the fresh approach the series is to offer. We know that Lex and Superman would become arch enemies but for two years Lex has been a steadfast friend to Clark. With season three the darker side of Lex begins to appear. After incarceration in a metal hospital after a psychotic break, he emerged more determined than ever to supplant his father as head of LuthorCorp. The friendship between Clark and Lex begins to show signs of stress, a foreshadowing of things to come.

As Lex prepares for a dark future Clark continues to investigate his past. The Native American cave with Kyptonian glyphs becomes central to this quest and of growing interest to Lex. The relations are more important in Smallville: Season 3 than the Kryptonite induced villain of the week. Smallville: Season 3 is a darker season, one that touches on a wider range of human emotions and relationships. While the first two seasons of Smallville concentrated on how Clark learned to cope with his new abilities here there is more human themes, a boy growing into manhood who wants to understand where he came from, in order to shape his own future. While none of us have super human powers we all have to go through this. We also have Jonathan stepping up to the plate taking on the computer generated personality of Jor-El, Clark’s biological father. Here, Jonathan does what any good father would do, he risks all to save his son. The third season takes the familiarity built over the first two years to create a far better than average teen oriented television drama. While most television faire targeted on the youthful demographic concentrate on sex and drugs, Smallville centers on more typical relationships nurtured in extraordinary circumstances.

As the Smallville story grows and matures so has the cast. Tom Welling played the first two seasons of Smallville almost completely good, devoid of the darker side of humanity. Now, Welling has a chance to spread his wings and explore a part that demands a wider range to his acting abilities. Now, he gets to throw in a good measure of old fashion teenaged angst to his performance. Kristin Kreuk also has grown over the seasons. The once unattainable Lana is now more human and approachable. Her character is now emancipated and living above the local coffee shop. She is on the cusp of adult hood and Kreuk is more than up to the challenge of keeping Lana interesting. Allison Mack takes on a difficult task playing the ever faithful Chloe. She has to balance deep feelings for Clark, a growing friendship with Lana with her personal ambitions of becoming a reporter driven by an innate curiosity. Michael Rosenbaum has what seems to be the most fun part, playing the villain offers more opportunity to an actor to go to the edge of being over the top. Here Rosenbuam takes Lex past sanity and reels him back in nicely. We begin to see the seeds of the nefarious villain we know he will become. In all the Smallville: Season 3 cast plays well off each other well. While Clark remains the focal point the Smallville: Season 3 cast he has more of an ensemble feel to it, each member willing to act in but central and supporting roles as the demands of the story change.

As with most television shows there is a rotating list of directors taking the helm each episode. For the most part there is a consistency achieved here that creates a natural flow from one episode to the next. The story arcs range from those that continue season to season, those within Smallville: Season 3 to episode specific plots. There are even a few episodes offered up that more or less stand alone, such as when the story focuses on a visit by Jor-El to the earth in the sixties. With high production values and solid writing Smallville: Season 3 does more than just survive the third season, it makes us look forward to the forth and beyond. The obvious cope out of concentrating on Clark’s powers is avoided, the human is more important here than the super human.

As with the previous two season box set DVDs Warner Brothers maintains the high level of expectations with Smallville: Season 3. The Dolby Surround provides a clear, full sound stage. This is especially important considering some of the musical queues which never overwhelm the dialogue. The video is vibrant, displaying an excellent color palette. The extras pretty much are consistent with the previous sets of Smallville. There are commentary tracks provided for three episodes, it would have been nice to have included them in all but we take what we get. The second volume of the Chloe Chronicles is provided, giving a little more insight into the characters from Chloe’s unique, albeit limited perspective. We also get a behind the scenes featurette, an interactive comic book and a gag reel to round things off. The gag reel and deleted scenes are somewhat limited but enjoyable none the less. Smallville: Season 3 is a must have for those with the other two sets. If Smallville: Season 3 is your first foray into the world of Smallville you will be anxious to add the previous sets as well.

Movie Review of Smallville: Season 3 by Doug MacLean of hometheaterinfo.com

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