The moment Smallville fans have been waiting 10 years for has arrived: Clark Kent is finally becoming Superman. As the future Man of Steel prepares to take on adversary Darkseid, who is determined to corrupt Earth and its inhabitants, he will have to face the return of another foe and the challenge of realizing his destiny.
1. Clark's Evolution into Superman: In the final episodes, Clark (Tom Welling) has taken the necessary steps to achieving his destiny, including severing ties with Jor-El in the Fortress. "It was about the fact that sometimes your mentors and the people that you look to for help can sometimes also be holding you back," Souders says. "He's really trying to figure out all those relationships as he finally takes this step into complete manhood, shall we say, super-manhood." Adds Peterson: "He's trying too hard to be a hero and trying too hard to force his destiny." Witnessing his future in the 200th episode is a factor in that. "When you've seen your future, how does that start adjusting what you do on a daily basis?" Souders says.
2. Lex's Return: Michael Rosenbaum was a last-minute — but welcomed — addition to the series finale. But Lex's return does not deter Clark from taking down Darkseid. "There was only so much we could do with him in the story and we really wanted to keep this Clark's finale," Peterson says. "But Lex plays a very interesting role and there are a couple of big twists." Had Rosenbaum not returned, Souders says his character "would have been a little bit of a puppeteer behind the scenes."
3. Reconciling the Mythology: In the comics, Lois (Erica Durance) and Clark were not married before he became Superman, and Lex did not initially know his true identity. Souders says some of those differences will be reconciled, but some are left open-ended. "From every movie to every comic book, there have been different Earths," Peterson adds. "So, it's hard to pinpoint exactly one thing that you're supposed to line up to. We're just one more of those different variations. ... We haven't gone way off the path."
4. Chloe's Future: Among the differences from the mythology is, of course, Chloe (Allison Mack). Though her character didn't exist before the CW series, Peterson says, "We service her character in a way that is right for who she was and who she is becoming. She has one kind of big moment with Clark where we get to see her shine. ... There's a certain thing we gave her that nobody else got."
5. Jonathan Kent's Return: Though Papa Kent (John Schneider) has been dead since the 100th episode, Jonathan will play a crucial role in the finale. "We very purposefully platformed his role in the finale with what we did in the premiere" when Jonathan appeared to Clark on the farm, Peterson says. "The whole point was to bookend the final season with Jonathan. He's introduced in that same type of way."
6. Oliver's Transformation: Last seen digging up gold Kryptonite, which would permanently strip Clark of his powers, Oliver (Justin Hartley) is heading down a dark path in the finale — one that includes shoving Clark through a window at his wedding. It's Clark and Oliver's strong bond that may save his life. "You really see what an impact that these heroes coming together has made on [Oliver]," Souders says. "There's a really great moment that you see their friendship and that bond. And that's what's going to get them through a lot of hard times in the future."
7. Clark and Lex Face Off: In the lead-up to Clark's battle with Darkseid, Lex will call upon Clark in a surprising way. In setting up the eventual enemies meeting, Souders says they played off Lex's personality in the pilot, where he was "totally personable and super-sympathetic and just wanted to thank a guy for saving his life. When we looked at having him back in the finale, it was the same thing, which is, they're going to go on to be huge enemies."
8. Favorite Finale Moments: While the producers were unable to fit everything they wanted into the series ender, Peterson says it "hits 80 to 90 percent of what everybody's going to want." As for their favorite scenes, Souders says, "There are a couple of moments in the church, particularly when Lois is about to walk down the aisle. Actually, I'm just going to say I have a couple of favorite moments on the actual aisle." Adds Peterson: "There's one shot, and that is the Smallville shot — you'll see it and you'll know it immediately. We needed it in the finale." Supersuit, anyone?
9. Missing From the Finale: Because Souders and Peterson initially thought they didn't have enough material, they produced extra scenes that will hopefully end up on the DVD. "We wrote a couple extra scenes with some of the Darkseid mythology with Granny and Godfrey," Peterson says. "It flushed out the story a little, but because they weren't our main characters, they were the first to go."
10. Why You Should Watch the Entire Finale: The producers hinted that the first five minutes may feature a flash-forward, while the last five minutes may include the John Williams score from the Superman films.
The two-hour series finale of Smallville airs Friday at 8/7c on the CW.