Written By Jeff Mardo
The final season of Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman has finally hit store shelves, and it couldn’t have come at a better time for the franchise. The Big Red S is everywhere these days, between a new feature film that is coming soon to DVD, a boxed-set re-release of all the Christopher Reeve-era films and an all new video game, the hero seems to be everywhere. It’s only fitting that the final season of the modern series should be hitting the streets as well.
Unfortunately, the series d…d not go out gracefully. There are some good episodes here, but they are certainly not up to par with the other seasons’ offerings. The real tragedy, however, is that the series met with that unfortunate situation where they thought they were going to be back for season five, but they were cancelled in the interim. As a result, the series ends on something of a cliffhanger, with loose ends left hanging all over the place. For loyal followers of the show, this surely has left a bittersweet taste in their mouths.
The truth is, it was time for the show to move on. There just weren’t that many secrets left. Lois and Clark were firmly a couple, which took away one of the show’s major through stories. Even the villains were starting to figure out Superman’s real identity. When there are no secrets left between the characters, there is no interest left for the audience.
This is a pretty impressive audio track for a stereo television offering. There is some low end present, and the dialog is very clear. The score is also mixed well, highlighting the most important parts of each episode. Now, it’s important to keep in mind that we are talking about a TV show that was made before high definition TVs and home theaters were the norm, so this is not going to be outstanding audio, but it is certainly very acceptable on modern equipment.
The video quality is not quite as good as that of the audio, but it is still acceptable. There is a fair amount of grain on these full screen transfers, and the colors are just a bit on the faded side. Truth be told, I was pretty surprised at how old these episodes looked. Not Growing Pains old, but certainly Family Matters old. The shows are certainly watchable, but not quite as clean as I would have hoped.
The final season is pretty light on the extra features. All that is here is a segment called Kryptonian Kronology: Dean Cain hosts an interactive history of the Superman timeline, which is exactly what it sounds like. I was a bit surprised that there weren’t any newly-recorded interviews included about the end of the show, and reflections on the series as a whole. I guess Teri Hatcher is too busy being a Desperate Housewife to pay a visit to the old days as lowly Lois Lane. You simply can’t convince me that Dean Cain’s Ripley’s Believe it or Not schedule is that grueling, though.
So here it is, loyal Superman fans. Pick up this set if you have been collecting these seasons all along. There’s nothing particularly wrong with this set, it’s just that there’s nothing overly right about it, either. If you are new to the show, I would strongly suggest you start with the better episodes in season one, and maybe rent these as you move on down the line. By this point, the show had turned into pleasant eye candy, and not much else.
Special Features List
- Kryptonian Kronology