Thursday, May 05, 2011

Tom Welling and the Superman Curse

Staying in the Superman neighborhood for a bit longer, there's just over a week to go (and one episode remaining) until Smallville leaves the TV landscape for good on May 13, and series star Tom Welling recently chatted with Zap2It to offer up a (spoiler-free) tease of the finale, including who's coming back (Michael Rosenbaum as Lex Luthor) and who isn't (Kristen Kreuk as Lana Lang), also reflecting on the decade-long journey that's brought both him (and us) to this point.

Reading the interview, I'm struck by how Welling, a relative newbie in the industry when the show premiered in '01, seems to have grown just as much as his small screen alter ego in the intervening decade. Having played a key creative role on Smallville as one of its executive producers and directors for the past several seasons, and also serving as producer of cheerleader dramedy Hellcats for the CW, it's clear that Welling has aspirations beyond being "that guy who played Superman but not really" for the rest of his life. This is a role that's traditionally been a pretty tough one for actors to put behind them (borne out by Brandon Routh's recent difficulties), but I'm hoping that Tom Welling might just prove the "Superman Curse" wrong.

5 comments:

Abdul-Halim V. said...

I've been watching Smallville since the beginning but for a while it has been more about a sense of obligation than anything else. The main thing that drew me into the show was how they would handle Lex's trajectory from Clark's friend to Superman's enemy and I think they bumbled it.

Actually, in general I think they do a clumsy job of plot and character development. But they do manage some impressively iconic casting (it is hard to get more Oedipal than Terrence Stamp (Zod) as Jor-El, Annette O'Toole (Lana Lang) as Martha Kent, etc. ) Also, they occasionally manage to have an interesting visual look and some powerful individual scenes (One which stands out for me is a scene with Clark Kent in a phone booth calling his mommy).

Zaki said...

Yeah, SMALLVILLE is definitely a show with its fair share of problems. I discussed some of my issues with the concept and execution here:

http://www.zakiscorner.com/2010/07/kent-conundrum.html

There's definitely a sense that they were making a lot of it up as they went (Lana is a witch? What?) but you have to give 'em points for sheer longevity and stick-to-itiveness, if nothing else.

Abdul-Halim V. said...

yeah, they've definitely been making it up as they went along with clumsy starts and stops for a while; two different Zods, two different Karas, multiple Jor-Els, the whole oh-we-didn't-mean-he-was-THAT-Jimmy-Olsen-thing. And we could keep going...

Well, I'll be put out of my "misery" tonight.

The Four-Eyed Avenger said...

Hey, Zaki -- speaking of Brandon Routh, have you seen "Dylan Dog" yet? Quite entertaining, seems a bit more like a TV pilot than a feature film, but I thought it was enjoyable.

Zaki said...

Haven't seen it, but it's definitely on my "one of these days" list. I feel bad that Routh really got left behind by the Super-express. He deserved better than what the movie ended up giving him with career-wise.