Sunday, June 27, 2021

Superman and Lois: Season 1, Episode 11 - A Brief Reminiscence In-Between Cataclysmic Events

 For a summary of the episode guide layout & categories, click here.


Clark recalls his earliest adventures as Superman and how he fell in love with Lois and started a family, but there's something strange about this walk down memory lane.


For The Man Who Has Everything (Superman being trapped in an artificial world based on his memories), Action Comics #1 (a tribute to the cover), Superman: The Movie (Clark's background and the general style, the creation of the Fortress of Solitude), Superman For All Seasons (Clark's line about his mom making his costume), the Adventures of Superman radio show (character of Atom Man) and Man of Steel (the Fortress sequences, the montage where Clark ages to adulthood while flying) 


In the initial broadcast of this episode on CTV in Canada, a temporary VFX shot was left in the sequence where Tal-Rho's fortress is created.


Anyone who doubts Tyler Hoechlin's ability to play Superman after this episode clearly hasn't been watching this show.


The special effects showing the creation of the Fortresses are on-par with the Superman movies made almost 10 years ago.

Super Trivia

See 101 for explanations of the scenes repeated from the pilot.

No specific year is given for when Clark returned to Smallville, but it seems likely it was 2004. This is based on the fact that when he sees Lana and Kyle at the local movie theater, the Marquee is promoting a Harry Potter double-feature and Friday Night Lights.  The film version of Friday Night Lights was released in 2004.

One flashback sequence in this episode has Clark changing out of his Superman costume and into his street clothes in a phone booth. This was a frequent occurrence in the classic Superman comics.

One passerby quotes the classic introduction to Adventures of Superman, saying that Superman flew off  "like a bird or a plane" just after his first appearance. 

There is a brief mention of Jimmy Olsen getting a picture of Superman, after Lois and Clark meet for the first time, but the character himself does not make an appearance.

While not identified by name in the episode, the reporter character who tells Lois that he's going to get a Pulitzer for his story about the flying mystery man is credited as Ron Troupe - one of the most enduring members of the supporting cast of the Daily Planet in the comics and Lois and Clark's brother-in-law in the Post-Crisis reality, where he married Lucy Lane.

Henry Miller, the Nazi criminal Superman confronts during his first meeting with Lois as Superman, is based on the classic Superman villain Atom Man. Originally created for the Adventures of Superman radio show and later adapted into live action for the second Superman serial, Atom Man Vs. Superman, he was introduced into the comics in World's Finest #271 in September 1981.

The Arrowverse version of Henry Miller is not identified as Atom Man. Also, his powers are based around a super-suit, whereas the comic book Atom Man had energy protection powers based upon Kryptonite; the result of an experiment by his scientist father to create a super-soldier.

As in many Superman origin stories, the Superman name was Lois' idea.

Lois evokes the classic Superman credo when asking him what he stands for. He mentions Truth and Justice but dithers when she says "The American Way," but only because he thinks its a ploy to get him to admit to where he grew up.

On Supergirl, when Lois discovered she was pregnant, she and Clark traveled to Argo City where they could be certain the yellow sun wouldn't cause their child to kick its way out of the womb. This is retconned by the scene in this episode of Lois giving birth, on Earth, in the post-Crisis timeline.


According to Jor-El, Kryptonian cells absorb the yellow solar radiation of Earth's sun in ways humans cannot, creating nearly endless energy.

Tal-Rho employs a Kryptonian device created by the scientist Ter-Lock, which allows the wearer to navigate the resting mind of another.

Dialogue Triumphs

Clark: I'm ready, Father. I can feel it.
Jor-El: In body and spirit, yes, but there is something else you need to learn. Something which I cannot teach you here.
Clark: What is it?
Jor-El: Why you wish to help them. Go. Reconnect with the world. Open your heart to them. Find out why you wish to be their champion.

(Everyone in the newsroom is talking about the latest Superman sighting.)
Clark:  Seems like a pretty big story.
Lois: Yeah, which every reporter here is tripping over themselves to cover. (sighs) Boys and their heroes. 
Clark:  Aren't heroes a good thing?
Lois: Yeah, of course, and I know that we need this guy. It's just that ever since he showed up, he's been dominating the conversation. Metropolis has so many problems that aren't just rescue operations. They're systemic. Here, look at this. 
(Lois shows Clark a picture of a burned-out building.)
Clark: These lightning bolts...?
Lois: Nazi symbols. They've been popping up all over lower Metropolis along with a rash of arson attacks against minority-owned businesses. 
Clark: Do you have any idea who's responsible? 
Lois: By all accounts, some psycho in a metal mask and a trench coat. 
Clark: (stunned) I didn't know about this. 
Lois: That's my point exactly. I have been covering this for months, only my reporting keeps getting drowned out by everyone's favorite miracle man. 
(Clark looks down and seems to make a decision.)
Clark: How can I help? 
(Lois slowly smiles in response.)

(Superman has just beaten Henry Miller. A crowd cheers as police sirens in the distance get closer.)
How'd you know about this? 
Superman: I've been reading your reports in the "Planet", but also my hearing.
Lois: Your hearing?
Superman: Oh. (chuckles) My, um,  super-hearing.
Lois: We haven't formally met. I'm Lois Lane.
(Lois grabs his hand before he has a chance to pull it away. Not that he takes the chance.) 
Superman: It's nice to meet you, Ms. Lane.
Lois: And you are who exactly? Mister Metropolis? Red and Blue Man?
Superman: (chuckles) I'm sure you'll come up with something.
(Clark takes off and the crowd gasps. Lois just watches him.)
Man: Who was that?
Lois (inspired) Superman.

(Lois and Clark are in bed together.)
Clark: I can't believe I married Lois Lane.
Lois: I'm all yours, babe. For better or for worse.
Clark: You know, I... I kept my secret from everyone for so long, and now I know why. It's for you. So we could have this life together.
Lois: There's no one I'd rather share it with.
Clark: This might be a weird time to say it, but I can't wait to tell my dad about the wedding. He's gonna be so excited. I mean, as excited as a hologram can get, I guess.
Lois: (smirking) Well, he's gonna have to wait till after the honeymoon. 

(Lois and Clark just found out they are having twins.)
Lois: Do you think this is because of Superman?
Clark: My father assured me everything's gonna be fine.
Lois: He also didn't know we were having twins, and that is a pretty big curve ball. 


Most of the flashbacks in this episode are extended versions of the scenes detailing Superman's life in 101.

The opening sequence shows a teenage Clark Kent wandering into the Arctic, guided by his sunstone, and using it to create the Fortress of Solitude.

Clark apparently did not return home to visit Martha Kent during the time he was training with Jor-El.

Clark explains about Krypton to his mother.

Clark intends to go to Lana Lang to tell her about his powers, only to change his mind after seeing her with Kyle Cushing and noting that she had an engagement ring.

Kyle just got a job at the fire station when Clark came back to visit Lana.

Martha Kent had a dream about Clark flying and was inspired to make him his first Superman costume.

When Clark first arrives in Metropolis, he is trying to find Milledge Avenue and an apartment complex there just before he makes his first public appearance as Superman.

Clark was inspired to apply for a job at the Daily Planet after a passerby at the scene of his first rescue as Superman said someone at The Planet should write about that.

Clark is able to persuade Perry White to hire him, despite a lack of experience as a professional writer, after agreeing to pick up his dry cleaning every Thursday.

Clark was assigned to follow Lois Lane and learn the ropes upon being hired.

Clark helps Lois with a story involving someone burning down minority-owned businesses and leaving behind Nazi symbols.

Clark's work impresses Lois, who offers to talk to Perry about getting him a beat of his own. Clark says she doesn't have to because he enjoys working with her.

Lois attempts to confront her prime suspect - a hardware store employee named Henry Miller - about his crimes. This leads to her first meeting with "Superman" as he arrives to protect her and the innocents in the area, when Miller attempts to kill several people in "Little India" with flame-throws and grenades. 

After defeating Henry Miller, Clark notices a faint figure flicker in and out of view as if a ghost were watching him.

Lois conducted the first on-camera interview with Superman for the "Daily Planet Today" web series, one year after his first appearance.

Superman reveals that he's from a planet called Krypton and that he was raised since infancy on Earth, but he doesn't discuss where he was raised.

Clark speaks every language on Earth, but claims this is a matter of study and not a superpower.

Lois' producer Janet notices that Superman seems to have a crush on Lois, but she dismisses this because she's in love with Clark Kent.

Clark revealed his secret identity to Lois on their first trip to Smallville to meet his mother.

Clark told the Jor-El hologram about his wedding. In the middle of it, Jor-El suddenly shouts that he needs Clark to get out of there, now!

Lois used three pregnancy tests to confirm she was pregnant.

Clark notices something odd about the time Lois tells him about how she's pregnant, but is drawn back into the illusion by her happiness.

Lois wanted a daughter. Clark just wanted their child to be healthy.

Clark notices the flickering figure again as he and Lois find out they are having twins. This leads him to discover that he's in some kind of simulation based on his memories, when Lois continues to talk to open air like he isn't there.

As Lois mentioned in 105, she was in labor for 27 hours delivering the twins.

Tal-Rho appears in the hospital and encourages Clark to watch his sons being born again.

Clark realizes that Tal-Rho now knows everything about his past and that Lois is his wife and Jonathan and Jordan his sons.

Clark wakes up in the Fortress of Solitude, where Tal-Rho is waiting.

Tal-Rho claims he wanted to understand Clark and what could cause him to betray Krypton.

Tal-Rho destroys the sunstone holding the Jor-El hologram.

Kyle Cushing says he feels like he drank ten whiskey chasers after being possessed by a Kryptonian.

Most of the people of Smallville only know the broad strokes - that Morgan Edge was giving people powers but messing with their minds to control them. The DoD has left out the part about people being possessed by alien minds.

The DoD are still patrolling downtown Smallville.

Sarah thanks Jonathan and Jordan for telling her the truth about her father.

Sarah asks for a moment alone with Jordan, during which she kisses him and says she doesn't want to be just friends anymore.

Kyle apologizes to Lois for doubting her.

Tal-Rho arrives at the Kent farm, just after Lois, Jonathan and Jordan return home from the Curhings.

Clark promises to surrender to Tal-Rho is he promises to let his family live unharmed.

Tal-Rho takes Clark to his Fortress of Solitude, which is in a desert somewhere.

Tal-Rho created his Fortress in the year 1987.

Zeta-Rho was a much crueler teacher than Jor-El, torturing Tal-Rho as part of his education.

The Zeta-Rho hologram and Tal-Rho begin to torture Superman in the same way Tal-Rho was conditioned.

Lois calls a man named John and tells him that she thinks Superman has just been turned.


Tal-Rho's Fortress of Solitude, located in a desert somewhere - 1987
Tal-Rho's Fortress of Solitude, located in a desert somewhere - 2021

Untelevised Adventures

The episode reveals how Tal-Rho formed his own fortress, with a hologram of his father to advise and train him.

The Bottom Line

One hell of an episode with one hello of a cliffhanger.

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