And so here we are. I started on Smallville as an intern in 2005, and before that had been watching since Season 3, so to say that a chapter of my life is coming to a close is an understatement.
The news has broken that the series we continued in digital and print after the television run ended will (for reals) be coming to a close in a mere five Fridays.
There’s plenty of feels left to be had (the last three weeks are nothing BUT feels), and at least one major gut punch. If you’re a stalwart print reader - as I’ve said recently - you’re going to be left in the dust as the season concludes digitally. By four months. Can you avoid spoilers for that long? CAN YOU?!? ;-)
Print or digital, if you’re reading this, you’ve probably been with us for quite a while. Depending on how you slice it, we’ve had nearly a full season of “episodes”:
Break the 120/90-pagers into what would have been 2-parters on the TV (their scripts were certainly long enough to qualify), and that shakes out to 23 episodes, which is a single episode longer than a full season of television. So, either way… that’s a bunch more Smallville than anyone ever bargained for!
125 digital weeks of content. What will amount to 40 print issues of Superman and Family. That’s nothing to shake a stick at!
The end was not sudden, was in no way contentious and was not a surprise from the creative side in the least - this was planned-planned-planned, and I blessedly had more than enough time to end things the way I had always intended. All told, there were maybe only TWO arcs out of the whole bunch that got kicked back when pitched - which, all things considered, is a pretty great success/failure ratio when it comes to this kind of thing. The series didn’t truly lack for not having them.
From the top down, everyone on this side of the screen worked endlessly to create a continuous Smallville experience from the television screen to the computer/tablet/phone display, to the printed page. As Clark’s world grew and expanded into “Superman’s”, so did the kind of stories we were able to tell — ones of scale and scope that never would have been possible to realize or conceive on a television show’s budget. For viewers who came to the platform (and comics!) from the show, thank you for trusting us with your characters, your world, your ships and your stories.
Thanks to Al Gough & Miles Millar, TRP, David Nutter, WBTV and all the writers, editors, cast and crew that developed and nurtured a property with the heart and staying power that Smallville has proven itself to have.
It was an honor to (along with Batman Beyond) launch the DC Digital brand, which has done quite well for itself, and I’d like to thank everyone in Editorial for everything they did to keep the crazy train rolling. Make no mistake - the schedule behind weekly comics is murderous and maddening.
Thank you to: Geoff Johns; Jim Lee; Dan Didio; Hank Kanalz; Jim Chadwick; Ben Abernathy; Kwanza Johnson; Kristy Quinn; Jessica Chen; Brandy Phillips and anyone and everyone else on the Publishing side that I’ve forgotten to name — loads of people are involved in any project like this, many of whom I’ve never even met, much less spoken to! Thank you!
Thanking our art teams is even trickier. Between pencils and inks and fill-in chapters and lettering and colors… it’s an army of talent. I shall endeavor to do my best in naming, and apologies if I’ve missed you:
- Pere Perez
- Gary Frank
- Chris Beckett
- Randy Mayor
- Saida Temofonte
- Chris Cross
- Jamal Igle
- Jorge Jimenez
- Kevin West
- Axel Gimenez
- Marc Deering
- Diana Egea
- Carrie Strachan
- Wendy Broome
- Mico Suayan
- Ryan Benjamin
- Gabe Eltaeb
- Scott Kolins
- Daniel HDR
- Rodney Buchemi
- Rex Lokus
- Pete Woods
- Coral Martinez
- Rainer Petter
- Beni Lobel
- Edgar Salazar
- Rob Lean
- Marcio Takara
- Ig Guara
- Julio Ferreira
- Le Beau L. Underwood
- Agustin Padilla
- Jose Aviles
- Marcelo Di Chiara
- J.P. Mayer
And of course, last by not least, my Dearest Cat Staggs, who’s been along for the entire ride with FORTY COVERS and full interiors on two of the Specials. Aside from Superman himself, Cat’s been the one constant on the book. She is an immense talent, a good person and a wonderful accomplice. Her forthcoming child is immensely lucky to have her to look up to.
Thanks also to each and every Reader that’s been with us since the beginning… or jumped in with Batman… or left before Lana and came back after the Legion… you’ve all been a part of something very special and close our hearts. And we know how close Smallville’s been to yours. Even if you just wandered in as a red and blue-blooded Superman fan who’s never watched the show, we hope we’ve done right by you, too.
Either way, don’t despair — there are still five more Fridays of Superman being Superman… five more Fridays of the Justice League taking form… five more Fridays of heroes acting like heroes. Five more Fridays of life, death, hope and family.
Which is really what “Smallville” is all about.
P.S. That little “Billy” was TOTES Shazam on the down-low.
"Well, looks like another thrilling Friday night — just you and me flying the red eye on this paper airplane"
Today a decade ago, Erica Durance made her debut as Lois Lane on Smallville. (September 22 2004)
"Or there’s another kind of activity two people share, repetitive motion, builds to a climax."
"Being housemates didn’t work out for us the first time, Smallville, why tempt fate?"