When Superman & Lois debuts on The CW in 2021, the eagerly anticipated new Arrowverse series isn't going to find the Man of Steel and his wife Lois Lane in the iconic city of Metropolis. Instead, the series will see the Kents back in Smallville with their sons. It's a big shift for the beloved DC Comics characters, but it's one that showrunner Todd Helbing says comes from a very authentic place, one rooted in real life.
During Superman & Lois panel during the second part of DC FanDome last weekend, Helbing explained that sending Lois and Clark back to Smallville connect with the idea of a dying small town as well as the need to sometimes go home again after a tragedy.
"The story of Superman has taking place in Metropolis for very long. Obviously, there was the Smallville series," Helbing said. "But I came from a small town in the Midwest, and the town that I grew up in had a business leave that sort of affected every everybody in the town, and the town started to slowly dry up. And it felt very current with recent years, after 2008. We want to tell a story where you have parents, after this tragic event happens, move back to Smallville and really find that it's easier to raise kids maybe in a place where life isn't so hectic, as it is."
In a sense, a return to Smallville will offer a blank slate to tell a new kind of Superman story and Helbing also explained that the "Crisis on Infinite Earths" crossover aided in refreshing the story a great deal as well.
"Well, for all the fans that watched you know at the end of the last or the beginning of last crossover Clark and Lois had a little infant boy named Jonathan, and the worlds merged and everything gets rewritten, and the end of the crossover is Lois calling Clark saying that she that he has to get home, because there's a problem with the boys," Helbing said. "So, we took 'Crisis' as an opportunity to really age up and change things for them as parents, age up the boys and then make them teenagers, when things really get complicated for parents. So, I think just 'Crisis' in general, really gave us an opportunity to start with a blank slate and tell the story in a way that we couldn't have otherwise."
In Superman & Lois, after years of facing megalomaniacal supervillains, monsters wreaking havoc on Metropolis, and alien invaders intent on wiping out the human race, the world's most famous superhero, The Man of Steel aka Clark Kent (Tyler Hoechlin) and comic books' most famous journalist, Lois Lane (Elizabeth Tulloch) come face to face with one of their greatest challenges ever - dealing with all the stress, pressures and complexities that come with being working parents in today’s society. Complicating the already daunting job of raising two boys, Clark and Lois must also concern themselves with whether or not their sons Jonathan (Jordan Elsass) and Jordan (Alexander Garfin) could inherit their father’s Kryptonian superpowers as they grow older.
Superman & Lois is expected to debut in January of 2021.