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SYFY WIRE Superman & Lois

'Superman & Lois' showrunner confirms the arrival of a classic Kryptonian villain in Season 2

The baddie who famously ended Superman's life is coming to Smallville.

By Josh Weiss
Superman & Lois PRESS

Superman & Lois returned for its second season on The CW Tuesday evening, and Clark Kent's life is already in danger! The season premiere (aptly-titled "What Lies Beneath") revealed that Smallville has been rocked by a number of mysterious earthquakes emanating from a local mine. But this isn't a typical case of shifting tectonic plates. No, no.

In a plunging VFX shot that takes us deep beneath the streets of Superman's sleepy hometown, we see a giant gloved hand smashing its way through the Earth's solid crust. Who is making all that raucous? Showrunner Todd Helbing confirmed that it's Doomsday, the now-classic baddie who famously ended the Man of Steel's life three decades ago.

"That is our homage to a classic Doomsday cover," the executive producer revealed to Entertainment Weekly (he was referring to a 1992 issue that featured the comic book debut of the nigh-unstoppable antagonist in the iconic Death of Superman storyline). "Then in Episode 2, you're going to see him a little bit more. In Episode 3, you'll get the full reveal."

He continued: "There's so much lore [and] mythology in the Superman universe that we feel it's our obligation to tell a unique story. We take inspirations from the comics as much as possible, and then we try to twist it. We did the same thing here."

Superman: The Man of Steel #18 Comic Cover CX

Engineered by Kryptonian scientists to be the perfect weapon, Doomsday was originally dubbed "the Ultimate" by his creators. Unfortunately, their little science experiment broke loose and started destroying planets throughout the universe until it was finally stopped, bound, and buried on Earth. The creature lied dormant for centuries until he woke up and literally started to wreck everything in its path. The whirlwind of chaos eventually reached Metropolis where Superman met his demise. To date, Doomsday has appeared in three live-action DC projects involving Superman: Smallville, Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Krypton.

Doomsday was specifically created to kill the Man of Tomorrow — nothing more than a mindless killing machine. On Superman & Lois, however, he'll have a few extra character dimensions.

"I think one of the things that we all really dig about the comic book world, but particularly with the villains, is finding ways to use assumptions about a character, and then flipping that, and finding ways to explain things that haven't been explained in the comics, like the use of something, or why a character does a certain thing," Helbing explained. "It'll all be revealed in Episode 3, but there are a couple little things that we're doing that I can't explain too much, because I'll give it away, but you'll see how we're influenced by certain pieces and why we used it to create work that is hopefully a cool reveal."

Speaking with Den of Geek, the showrunner likened this treatment of Doomsday to the fresh flourishes given to Morgan Edge/Eradicator (Adam Rayner) in Season 1. "We wanted to find ways that we could take that character and find a new way to define an introduction and sort of flip it on its head."

Helbing also reiterated that there will be "multiple villains" throughout the show's sophomore outing. "They all sort of start at different times, and they’re not necessarily connected, but then you’ll see how they all start to fall into place with each other," he said.

The Season 2 premiere of Superman & Lois is now available to stream on The CW app. New episodes air Tuesday nights on The CW.