Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman (1993–1997)
Frequently Asked Questions
In the first episode of "Lois & Clark" entitled "Pilot", Clark Kent is seen wearing glasses as he arrives in Metropolis, despite having no particular reason to, as he obviously has superhuman vision and has not yet decided to disguise himself as a superhero.
Given that Clark is seen performing superhuman feats in secret in the Pilot, it can be speculated that Clark simply wears the glasses to avoid suspicion that he is anything other than an ordinary man. It's worth noting also that Jonathan and Martha Kent are both bespectacled in this series - perhaps Clark started wearing them so people wouldn't ask questions about his parentage.
Unlike the Superman comics or animated series, Lex Luthor is not bald in this series. In "Superman: The Movie" Luthor's baldness was used as a throwaway gag at the end of the film (where it's established that he was wearing a toupee the entire time) and this tradition was carried over to the "Superboy" series.
In "Lois & Clark" however, Lex Luthor is simply not bald. Executive Producer Deborah Joy LeVine elaborated on this in one of the DVD Extras for "Lois & Clark" Season One, where she explained that actor John Shea was so fearsome and intimidating (not to mention good-looking) that she had no intention of asking him to put on a bald cap or shave his head.
In the Season 2 episode "The Phoenix", Lex Luthor loses his hair and is bald throughout the episode. This is the only time in the series where Luthor is bald however, as he returns in Season 3 with hair once again.
After Season One of "Lois & Clark" received only moderate ratings success, the network decided to make some changes, not limited to replacing Executive Producer Deborah Joy LeVine with seasoned TV producer Robert Butler. In addition to this, they fired Michael Landes on the grounds that certain viewers felt that he looked too similar to Dean Cain and that this could be confusing.
In "Superman: The Movie" and the subsequent sequels, Clark Kent is seen to be very clumsy and timid when working at the Daily Planet. This is because in those films Clark Kent was very much a disguise that Superman used in order to find out where he was needed. This is quite similar to the Silver Age comic books.
The TV series "Lois & Clark" follows the more modern approach of the comics, particularly the 1986 miniseries 'Man of Steel' by John Byrne where the situation is reversed: Clark Kent in all of his agencies, is the true persona and Superman is just the character he adopts when trouble is afoot. This makes the romance with Lois Lane more interesting, for Clark has to try and win Lois based on his merits as a normal man, rather than his feats as Superman.
This does raise the question of how no one is able to recognise that Clark Kent is clearly Superman wearing glasses. One possible explanation for this is that Kryptonians are established in "Lois & Clark" as being somewhat telepathic, capable of telepathic communication with each other and occasionally Earth humans (Clark is seen communicating with Lois over long distances once or twice over the course of the series). Perhaps Clark is somehow able to perform a mild telepathic hypnosis so that no one happens to notice more than a passing resemblance between he and Superman, and the glasses simply amplify this ability.
Tempus is an original villain created for "Lois & Clark". Many villains in the comic books have used time-travel for evil endeavours over the years, including Chronos the Time Thief.
"Lois & Clark" draws much inspiration from the geography of the comics. Suicide Slum, Hobs Bay, The Ace of Clubs and several other notable landmarks are all mentioned numerous times over the course of the series. In modern comic books, Metropolis is said to be broken up into several islands (much like New York state). One of these is 'New Troy' which is the main city part of the state. However, it is never established in "Lois & Clark" if the city is actually called 'New Troy' or if it's just the name of the cab company.
While "Lois & Clark" predominantly featured ordinary human beings, organised criminals and evil businessman as its villains, certain comic book supervillains did feature. Lex Luthor was the main villain for the first season of the series and made a number of appearances throughout the rest of the series.
Metallo, Toyman, the Prankster, Dr. Light, Mr Mxyzptlk and Max Mencken (whose only other appearance is in the Superman broadway musical) all made appearances. While General Zod did not appear in the series (as the creators did not have the rights to use the character) an almost identical character named Lord Nor was the primary antagonist during a story arc involving a group of Kryptonians who come to Earth. Similarly, while Vincent and Morgan Edge aren't featured in the series, Bill Church and Bill 'Billy' Church Jr. are reasonable facsimiles.
InterGang features prominently throughout the second and third season, however unlike in the comic books, they have no connection to Apokolips or Darkseid.
The short answer is that technically it does.
The long answer is that due to a number of reasons, it was never decided by the producers to include the Fortress of Solitude in the series. In the comics the Fortress is essentially Superman's Batcave, where he houses all manner of trophies and crime-fighting equipment, as well as an interplanetary zoo. In "Superman: The Movie", the Fortress is re-imagined as a Kryptonian archive where Superman learns about his past via a computerised recreation of Jor-El's consciousness.
Obviously the Fortress would have been a very big budgetary commitment for "Lois & Clark", but beyond that it's important to remember that after the 1986 'Man of Steel' reboot in the comics, Superman didn't use the Fortress for several years as he chose to embrace his human side rather than his Kryptonian heritage. Similarly in "Lois & Clark", Clark's main desire is to lead an ordinary life as an Earth-man and just use his powers to help people where he can. Clark views himself as an Earth man and doesn't need to escape to an arctic hideaway in order to feel that way, when he can simply spend time with his family and friends.
Fittingly, the Fortress of Solitude in "Lois & Clark" is a treehouse situated at the Kent Farm in Smallville. Here, Clark stores the Kryptonian globe where he learns about Krypton.
Unlike "Smallville" which was shown on The WB (later retitled The CW), which was a cable channel; "Lois & Clark" was broadcast on ABC, one of the prominent American networks, and thus required much bigger ratings in order to stay on the air.
In Season One, the series narrowly avoided cancellation and many changes were made for Season Two, including replacing executive producer Deborah Joy LeVine with Robert Butler, recasting Jimmy Olsen with Justin Whalin, ejecting the provocative Cat Grant from the series and temporarily revamping the series as more of a family-friendly action/adventure series (as opposed to the more low-key adventure/drama of season one, where Superman would only appear occasionally over the course of a typical episode).
Despite these Season Two changes, the series continued to suffer from mediocre ratings until midway through the season the episode aptly named "The Phoenix" enjoyed a huge ratings boost that carried on through the rest of the season, ensuring a third season.
The third season was the only season of "Lois & Clark" where there was no danger of cancellation. Possibly due to Lois now being fully aware of Clark's dual identity (something that had never been a staple of the ongoing status quo outside of recent comics of that era), the series enjoyed the strongest ratings of its run, enabling it to explore wilder, more comic-book like avenues including episodes where Lois became a superhero named Ultrawoman and another episode where Lois, Jimmy and Superman become trapped in a virtual reality world.
Season Four continued to enjoy strong ratings, however ABC inexplicably decided to cancel the series and replace it with "The Wonderful World of Disney" (which was cancelled soon after). In a recent convention appearance, Dean Cain mentioned that the series was all set to be picked up by cable channel TNT, but that Teri Hatcher decided not to sign on because she was pregnant and didn't feel as though she could commit to the hectic shooting schedule.