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‘Superman & Lois’ Review: Season 1 Episode 9 “Loyal Subjekts”


This week’s episode finally had Clark meeting Morgan. It is a bit odd to have the lead who is number one on the call sheet meeting in a scene with the true Big Bad when the season only has six episodes left.

Though it is defensible. By having Morgan be an antagonist for Lois and interacting with her and not Clark, it had viewers focusing on “Captain Luthor” as Big Bad for Clark when he wasn’t a Luthor or really a villain at all. It also served the function of Lois being a hero through journalism. If Lois hadn’t been investigating Morgan so doggedly, Clark might not have been aware about the Kryptonian resurrection via X-kryptonite until it was too late. And like “Captain Luthor” was really John Henry Irons, it seems like Morgan Edge is another person as well. The end of the episode had Morgan revealing that he came to Earth at the same time as Clark did and calling him brother.

Let’s go over the potential options for his real identity:

Superman & Lois — “Loyal Subjekts” — Image Number: SML109fg_0005r.jpg — Pictured: Adam Rayner as Morgan Edge — Photo: The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.Photo Credit: Bettina Strauss

Option 1: H’El

The New 52 comics were a controversial period for Superman fans. It had the Clois marriage being erased from existence, Clark dating Wonder Woman (ick), a new costume that featured a high collar and no trunks and new villains like H’El a Kryptonian clone who was like a son to Jor-El and Lara. This is the most likely option because it explains why Morgan would call Clark brother and H’El was all about preserving Krypton. In the comics, his plan involved time travel. This is an adaptation, so it would be easy to see H’El’s plan change to resurrection. It still fits with the character in the comics.

If Morgan is H’El, I’d love it. This team really does take inspiration from all Superman media. We’ve had scientist Thaddeus Killgrave from the ’90s Dan Jurgens run, Jason Trask in last week’s episode who was pulled from a season one episode of Lois and Clark, Dabney Donovan who has existed in the comics since the ’70s as Morgan’s scientist and finally doing a live action adaptation of Steel that wasn’t embarrassing. Not to mention all the references to the Donner films, Smallville and Man of Steel. This series just loves Superman.

Option 2: Zod

The boring option. People have been theorizing Morgan is Zod for months, so if he’s Zod it will just be a big shrug. I think people generally are just tired of Zod showing up in Superman media since they always use him. I know Zod will eventually be on this show and he’ll tell Clark to kneel before him and it will spark a thousand slash fanfics, but can’t we wait on him? Superman has other villains. They can wait until season three to stunt cast Zod with Misha Collins or Daniel Gillies. I doubt the new Superman film will be touching Zod so they don’t have to worry about being blocked from using him. If Morgan is Zod, it will be underwhelming.

Option 3: New character

This show isn’t afraid to create a new character. They’ve created Jordan, Kyle and Sarah. It would be easy to see them creating a new Kryptonian. They could reveal Jor-El or Lara had an outside kid or they adopted him. I would prefer HE’l over this option, but a new character would be preferable to Zod. If he is a new character, just flesh him out because I can already tell you comic fans will be annoyed he isn’t a name they recognize.

No matter what Morgan’s real identity is, I just hope this is the end of the trend of introducing a character and then revealing they are someone else. If they keep on doing this, it will just be diminishing returns. The Flash kept on introducing speedsters with spooky voices with secret identities in the first three seasons to the point that fans begged for a different type of villain. If Superman & Lois has Bibbo Bibbowski move to Smallville next season and then reveals he’s really Mongul in disguise, it will just be annoying. You don’t want to be so repetitive that fans just see it coming a mile away. I apologize to any Superman & Lois writer reading this who just threw his or her “Ron Troupe is Brainiac!” pitch into the garbage. I’m sure you’ll come up with something better!

On the Clark and Lois are negligent parents front, Jonathan still doesn’t have an ELT. It is very dumb that we have Lois asking about how she’s going to keep him safe when he doesn’t even have the tool she and Jordan use basically every episode. Maybe she and Jonathan could have avoided almost being murdered by Kryptonian Kyle if he had an ELT in his pocket.

Superman & Lois — “Loyal Subjekts” — Image Number: SML109a_0100r.jpg — Pictured (L-R): Bitsie Tulloch as Lois and Jordan Elsass as Jonathan Kent — Photo: Bettina Strauss/The CW — © 2021 The CW Network, LLC. All Rights Reserved.Photo Credit: Bettina Strauss

At this point, I don’t think he’s getting one this season. He’s just going to keep on almost getting killed without a way to call his dad and the writers will expect us to ignore it. If he gets one in season two, I just expect him to randomly have it so they can sidestep the whole “Clark and Lois are horrible parents who lowkey didn’t care if Jonathan lived or died” conversation. That would be the cowardly way out of the issue the writers have created, but I’ll take it. Anything that gets me to stop thinking that Clark and Lois have a life insurance policy out on Jonathan.

I do think the most interesting scene in this episode was between Jonathan and Sam. Jonathan takes him to task for creating weapons that can hurt his father and his brother. Sam explains his duty is to protect the country from any conceivable threat. Jonathan tells him he could never be afraid of his family. This is a strong statement considering Jordan broke Jonathan’s hand and he saw an alternate universe version of his father melt Alt Lois. I wouldn’t blame Jonathan if he got on a bus and went to stay with Aunt Lucy, but he is very loyal to his family despite them ruining his life, favoring Jordan and not giving him an ELT. Can we eventually get one episode where Jonathan is happy? I’m tired of him constantly being the butt monkey of this show. Drama is about highs and lows. They haven’t had enough highs to balance out all these lows.

Random thoughts about “Loyal Subjekts”:

  • Since people are going to be flying around next week, that has me wondering how long they can keep Clark being Superman secret. I don’t want this to be like Henry Cavill’s Superman where literally everyone in that town knows he’s Superman.
  • I love that this show has Superman saving people around the world. Superman is the fireman of the DC universe and this show understands that.
  • I hope every person who said Tyler Hoechlin was skinny looked at him shirtless this week and felt abject shame at ever thinking that body was skinny. The man’s body is in such good shape that they digitally altered it in the film Palm Springs because it was too distracting.
  • This show is pretty rapidly giving Jordan powers. He has strength, heat vision, super hearing and now ice breath. Only things left are x-ray vision, invulnerability and flight.
  • I really hope Morgan doesn’t brainwash Clark or put another Kryptonian in his body. It is one thing to see an alternate universe Superman melting people. It is quite another thing for the actual Superman to do it.
Alan Sarapa
Alan is a Maryland resident and lifelong Superman fan. He has a monthly soap column at The Pop Break and is a co-host on daytime themed podcast The Chat.

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