Lana Lang Must Die!!!

One of the things that I’ve been doing lately is trying to study plots of my favorite TV shows. Once you spend an hour watching a show with a very good story, like Heroes or Lost, it’s hard to go back and watch something that’s not so well thought out, like Smallville.

It occurred to me that Smallville really needs to end this season, but it also needs to end in a way that allows the mythology of Superman to continue. To do this, I think Lana Lang has to die.

Smallville, for those of you who don’t know, is a show about Clark Kent, a not-so-typical teenage boy, and about his awkward teenage years. Kent also happens to grow up to become one of the most famous characters in modern-day literature: Superman. Yeah yeah, someone will complain that “comic books” aren’t “literature,” but you can’t argue Superman’s existence in the public consciousness of our society.

Anyway, the show is currently limping its way through its sixth (and hopefully) final season. I’m not sure at what point the show “jumped the shark,” but this season, in spite of adding new and less than exciting super-heroes, has been less than thrilling to watch.

The creators of the show at one point had created an interesting premise to the Superman mythology. They introduced the idea that Kal-El/Clark Kent/Superman wasn’t the only Kryptonian that had set foot on the planet. Jor-El, Sup’s father, actually set foot on planet Earth, and the show hinted that Kryptonians had visited the planet numerous times before, going back hundreds, if not thousands, of years.

This angle really brought something fresh to the series, which had been caught up in the Clark pining for Lana and FOTW (freak of the week) stories. Another twist to the myth was that Clark’s ship was intermixed with meteors from his home planet of Krypton. Over the course of the last several seasons, we’ve learned that Kryptonite has any number of uses, the least of which is embue average humans with strange new abilities.

But, much like Lost, Smallville has focused on the love triangle of Clark/Lex/Lana. Lex Luthor will become Superman’s greatest nemesis, but in the show he starts out as a rich kid trying to not be like his father. Over the years, though, Lex has gone to “the dark side” and has embraced his father’s legacy. Instead of being enemies, Clark and Lex start out as friends.
And then there’s Lana. Lana started out as the girl next door, literally, who Clark had a huge crush on. She also became the frequent target of the FOTW’s, being one of the most popular girls in school, which gave Clark plenty of opportunities to discreetly rescue her.

Once the characters got out of high school though, the writers seemed to lose their direction with Lana. Now her character is a very shallow, mistrusting, manipulative woman who demands to know all secrets while maintaining her own. They even tried to work her into the mythology by adding a mystical aspect, but it fizzled. The twist last year was to finally allow her to hook up with Clark, only to lose him, and then be pursued by Lex.This year, the Lex/Lana angle has been played up, with Lana pregnant and engaged to Lex. But, she still secretly pines for Clark. Although he still has feelings for her, he can’t let her in on his secret. Of course, now, six years later, Lana’s finally suspecting there’s something odd about good ol’ Clark.
So the show plods along, as if waiting for a big finale to happen (currently the wedding and/or birth of the child). Case in point. At the end of last season, Clark is banished to the Phantom Zone by Lex/Zod (long story). Within one episode, Clark happens to find someone close to his father in the zone. She happens to know a way out of said zone and leads him out. This also happens to conveniently open at Earth. In the process of helping Clark escape, several Phantom Zone criminals also slip through the doorway.

Clark feels directly responsible for letting these creatures loose on an unsuspecting populace. Yet, he spends most of his time hanging out in Smallville, hoping the “bad guys” appear somewhere in the world in such a way that he can easily zip over and take care of things. His new “hero” friends go off to search for a set of labs that Lex has allegedly created for the capture and experimentation of “meteor freaks.” Yet, Clark, for some reason, stays behind.

I think the only way this show can end on a good note is to kill Lana. Her character has been a mess for awhile. But, because the show has wrapped itself in the love triangle between Clark/Lana/Lex, there are strong bonds between the three of them. Killing off Lana in some dramatic fashion could drive the final nail in the coffin of Clark/Lex, and push then towards their respective destinies.
Here’s how the show should end: Lana discovers that her pregnancy is “unusual” and learns that she’s been impregnated rather than being just pregnant. The plot is Lex’s drive to create his own super being, using his fiancé as his test subject.

Lana, after learning this secret, abandons Lex (nice dramatic fight scene which Lana will bitch about “trust” blah blah blah) and turns to Clark, filling him in on everything. However, it’s too late to do anything. Lana is about to give birth. Lana gives birth and dies shortly afterward, with Clark by her side, and Lex looking on from a distance. Lex resents that Clark has taken away the only good thing in his life from him. Clark despises Lex for being directly responsible for Lana’s death. Unfortunately, Clark has no way to prove anything Lana has told him, so he has no means to bring Lex to justice. Lex basically gets away with murder.
And thus, the last piece is in place, driving the wedge between two characters who started out as friends will now be bitter enemies until death. Lex, having lost the one anchor keeping him from the edge of the abyss, will delve completely into the darkness. Clark, who has basically been hanging around hoping that things would change, can go off in search of the remaining phantom zone escapees, then return to the fortress of solitude where he can embrace his destiny as Superman. Oh, and Clark will finally fly in the last shot of the show (the show’s creators have said they won’t let him fly).
At least, I’m hoping this is how it will end. I can’t imagine the show creators trying to milk this for another season. They will probably try though. I suppose they could bring in wonder woman and some of the other Justice League characters next season. Then they can have the Clark/Lois/Wonder Woman triangle… : )

2 Thoughts on “Lana Lang Must Die!!!

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