Michael Rosenbaum and Tom Welling, <EM>Smallville</EM> Michael Rosenbaum and Tom Welling, Smallville

You asked, and we got you answers, as series cocreator Al Gough continues his campaign to address your burning questions about Smallville (Thursdays at 8 pm/ET, on the CW). This week's hot topics include the Clark-Lex rivalry, the last days of Krypton, and TV's "other" Superman.

A lot of fans originally started watching Smallville because of the promotion of Clark Kent and Lex Luthor, and the much-talked-about friendship of legend. Epic stuff! Do you feel you have done justice to this friendship? Did you have the story mapped out from the beginning and then follow it to the letter? Or did your "Clex" plans adjust over time? Are there any Clex times you wish you had done differently? — OriginalClexFan 
Gough: Thanks for your questions, OriginalClexFan. We've always known that the friendship between Clark Kent and Lex Luthor was destined to disintegrate, as the Superman mythology foretells. The interesting thing is how, like any relationship, there are ups and downs. We feel that as their friendship has taken a turn for the worse this season, there's a part of each of them that regrets the loss. No story, especially one that spans six seasons, is going to be mapped out to the letter, but in answer to your questions, no, there aren't any "Clex times" we wish we had done differently. As far as having done justice to this friendship, we'll let the fans be the judge.

Will any other cast members be attempting to direct the show in the future? And if you could get anybody to guest-star, who would it be? — Bluejay
Al Gough:
Michael Rosenbaum actually directed "Freak," which airs Feb. 15. Tom [Welling] will definitely be doing another one next year, and we'd certainly love to have Michael take another one as well, but that'll be up to him. No other cast members have expressed an interest, but we are always open to the idea! In terms of guest stars, we've been very lucky to get a lot of our dream list, including Christopher Reeve, Margot Kidder, Terence Stamp, Michael McKean and James Marsters, as well as the Justice League and Martian Manhunter. Alas, no Bruce Wayne. We would still love to have Dean Cain (Lois & Clark) on the show (who knows, maybe next season) and Wonder Woman. [For more on Dean Cain, keep reading.]

Do the writers start the season with a blank slate and just write the episodes as they go? Or are certain events you'd like to have happen spaced throughout the year, and are episodes written to work up to those events? — Scooby Doobey 
[Cocreator] Miles [Millar] and I sit down at the beginning of each season and come up with "signposts" for the season in terms of significant events and where we'd like the characters to be after 22 episodes. We then sit with the writers for the first week and vet these ideas. Nothing is set in stone, and a lot of times things change or get moved around, and new (and often better) ideas emerge. We are blessed to have a tremendous writing staff, and together we all build the season. That is the wonderful thing about TV as opposed to writing features: the interaction with so many talented writers and producers. Miles and I feel like we coach the ultimate all-star team!

A while back, Dean Cain was rumored to be possibly guest-starring on Smallville. Any chance we'll see him? Also, are there any other Superman actors (from any of the series) you would like to have on the show (like Noel Neill, Jack Larson, etc)? — Jasonmajor32
Gough: We'd love to have Dean on the show. Like I said above, maybe Season 7 will be the season when that happens. Fingers crossed! Noel and Jack are possibilities as well!

I was wondering if we were going to get a glimpse of the last days of Krypton soon. — LOSTville24 
If you look at those past episodes closely, you'll see a glimpse of the last days of Krypton. Yeah, I know, it's brief, but we can tell you one thing: If we ever do an episode about the last days of Krypton, it's sure to be the biggest-budget episode ever. If we can't make it look absolutely mind-blowing and stunning on a TV budget, there's no use in going there, don't you agree?

Will Michael McKean return as Perry White next season? I would love for his character to team up with Martha Kent (Annette O'Toole, Michael's real-life better half) against the Luthors. Also, I think he should be her love interest. Martha deserves somebody better than Lionel. The McKeans would be hot together on screen! — Kaye2
Gough: We'd love to see Michael McKean return again as Perry White. He was wonderful in that role. Michael has had a hot streak on Broadway over the last few years, appearing in a string of hit plays, and those theater commitments make scheduling tough. But if a great story comes along and the timing is right, you never know.

Do you have a long-term plan for Lionel? Because in seasons 4 through 6, it has been really confusing. Would you be able to clarify whether Lionel was actually good in seasons 4 and 5, or faking it? Lex recently claimed that Lionel was deluding himself. So he was faking? It would be nice to get confirmation. — LexAndLana 
Gough: Of course we have a long-term plan for Lionel! He's a character who's always going to keep those around him guessing, and that's the point. Above all, John Glover's brilliant portrayal of the character shows that Lionel Luthor is human, just like the rest of us. And no human is totally good, nor totally evil.  

Is Lana ever going to find out Clark's secret? I love Tom and Kristin [Kreuk]'s chemistry. — Faraway17
Gough: We agree that Tom and Kristin do have great chemistry as actors, but you'll have to keep watching to see how much Lana will find out.

Thank you for taking the time out of your schedule to answer our questions. Do you have any more spotlight episodes planned for the Martian Manhunter, as you did when the Green Arrow had his arc? Also, is there a finite number of Zoners in the world, or are more out there than we've been led to believe? And could you give a quick "yes," "no" or "maybe" to the possibilities of the following: Mon-El, the return of Brainiac, Green Lantern/Hal Jordan, Bizarro Clark, and a true alternate-universe episode. — Derfel85 
Gough: Martian Manhunter will be an ongoing presence this season and perhaps into next. There are a finite number of Zoners, or so we are led to believe. But who knows, there may be more! And to answer your last question: yes, no, no, yes, B, D, maybe.... Oh, heck, I was never very good with standardized tests!!

Hi, Mr. Gough, you are super! Will Chloe die or go crazy? — Yogurtyoda 
Gough: Why do you assume she's got to do one or the other? Maybe she'll buy a little house in the suburbs. Did you ever think of that? 

I have read that the comic book Warrior Angel, mentioned in "Reunion," has many speculating that Lionel will die in Episode 16 ("Promise"). Is the Warrior Angel mention a clue to what happens to Lionel? My second question is in regards to the favorite Triple-LLs (Lex, Lana and Lionel): I have noticed there has yet to be a scene with just the three of them. Is there a reason why this hasn't been done, and will it happen this season? — Kpjmm 
Gough: Lionel plays a key factor in Episode 16, but of course, this is a no-spoiler zone. Interesting that you noticed that there are no scenes with just the three LLs. Maybe we planned it that way, or maybe it was just happenstance....

Hey, Buffy fans, pick up the Feb. 12 TV Guide for a look at guest director Joss Whedon's special take on NBC's The Office.