In September 1993, Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman arrived on television screens. The series – which stared Teri Hatcher and Dean Cain in the title roles – introduced a whole new audience to the Superman mythology, and became an instant ratings winner.
Part romance, part action-adventure show, Lois & Clark placed its focus largely on the developing relationship between its lead characters, Lois Lane and Clark Kent. During the course of the series, Lois and Clark found friendship, love, and companionship, all while fighting off a never-ending threat from nefarious villains, including Lex Luthor.
But how did Lois & Clark end and why was the show cancelled? In this post, I will answer those questions, along with some other key questions about the series.
How many seasons of Lois & Clark were produced?
Lois & Clark originally aired in the US from September 12th 1993 until June 1997. The show ran on ABC for a total of four seasons.
How many episodes of Lois & Clark were produced?
In total, 88 episodes of Lois & Clark were produced. This equated to 22 episodes per season for the show’s four-season run.
Who were the cast of Lois & Clark?
The core cast of Lois & Clark was as follows:
- Dean Cain – Clark Kent/Superman
- Teri Hatcher – Lois Lane
- Lane Smith – Perry White
- Michael Landes – Jimmy Olsen (Season One)
- Justin Whalin – Jimmy Olsen (Season Two to Season Four)
- Tracy Scoggins – Cat Grant (Season One)
- Eddie Jones – Jonathan Kent
- K Callan – Martha Kent
- John Shea – Lex Luthor
In addition to the above actors, recurring cast members included:
- Tony Jay – Nigel St John
- Kenneth Kimmins – Dr. Klein
- Beverly Garland – Ellen Lane
- Harve Presnell – Sam Lane
- Lane Davies – Tempus
- Terry Kiser – H.G. Wells (Season Two & Season Four)
- Hamilton Camp – H.G. Wells (Season Three & Season Four)
- Sal Viscuso – Bobby Big Mouth
- Shaun Toub – Asabi
Why did the actor playing Jimmy Olsen change between Season One and Season Two?
During the first season of Lois & Clark, Michael Landes played the role of Jimmy Olsen, however, from the second season onward, Justin Whalin took over the role. The producers of the show replaced Landes, as they felt he looked a little too similar to Superman/Clark actor, Dean Cain, and they wanted an actor with teen appeal.
What happened to Cat Grant?
For the first season of Lois & Clark, actress Tracy Scoggins played the role of gossip columnist, Cat Grant. However, when the show returned for its second season, neither Scoggins nor Cat Grant were anywhere to be seen.
According to Scoggins, she left the show after she was cast in a pilot for a sci-fi comedy called Galaxy Beat. Speaking on the podcast, Lois & Clark’s: The New Podcast Adventures of Superman, Scoggins said: “I wrapped on Lois & Clark on a Friday and I started filming Galaxy Beat on Monday.”
Scoggins admitted there was a little more to her disappearance from the show, but she felt it was not her place to say any more than the potential scheduling conflicts.
What happened to Lex Luthor?
Lex Luthor appeared throughout Lois & Clark’s first season as the show’s recurring villain, with actor John Shea playing the role. The character was killed off during the Season One finale, The House of Luthor, so the series could move away from having one main villain.
But death proved to be but a temporary inconvenience and the character was briefly resurrected for the Season Two episode, Phoenix, with John Shea reprising the role. In this episode, Lex sported his traditional bald look from the Superman comics and was kept alive for future use.
Lex/Shea returned during Season Three, this time appearing in the episodes Double Jeopardy and Seconds. However, he was killed off once again – and this time for good.
Although the character was officially dead, Shea did return to the role one final time, for a voice over in the Season Four episode, Shadow of a Doubt. This voice over was via a recording which Lex had made prior to his death, so it allowed the actor to reprise his role without the need to resurrect the character.
Outside of Lex Luthor, did Lois & Clark feature any major villains from the Superman comics?
While Lois & Clark largely focused on original villains, created especially for the TV show, the series did incorporate a few villains from the comics – most notably, Metallo, Mr. Mxyzptlk, Toyman, Prankster and Intergang. The villains differed somewhat from their comic book counterparts, but shared similar characteristics and traits.
The show also used the names, Dr. Light and Deathstroke – two additional comic book villains. However, these villains had nothing to do with the characters from the comics.
Did Lois and Clark ever get married?
One of the defining aspects of Lois & Clark was the ‘will they, won’t they’ relationship between Lois Lane & Clark Kent. This relationship developed with each passing season, leading to the inevitable subject of marriage.
But marriage in Lois & Clark was not a simple process and when the characters initially went down the aisle, it was part of a sinister plot involving a clone of Lois Lane. This wedding took place during the Season Three episode, I Now Pronounce You…, with Clark unaware he was marrying a fake Lois.
This ‘fake out’ wedding was eventually corrected with a real wedding in Season Four, via the episode Swear to God, This Time We’re Not Kidding. In this episode, Lois and Clark finally tied the knot.
What happened in the final episode of Lois & Clark?
The final episode of Lois & Clark was titled The Family Hour and focused on Lois and Clark’s desire to plan a family. In the episode, Lois and Clark discover they are unable to have children, due to Clark’s unique physiology, so they seek medical advice from Lois’s father, Sam Lane.
Before Sam can assist the couple, he is kidnapped by a criminal with telekinetic abilities. Lois’s mother, Ellen, and Clark’s parents Jonathan and Martha are also kidnapped, and Clark’s secret identity is temporarily exposed.
By the episode’s conclusion, Superman saves the day and Clark’s secret is safe, however, Lois and Clark are no further along with their plans for a family. But during the final moments of the episode, an unnamed baby wrapped in a Superman blanket is left in Lois and Clark’s apartment, with a note suggesting the baby belongs to them.
Did the events of the final episode ever get resolved?
Unfortunately, the identity of the baby was never explained. Lois & Clark was cancelled following the conclusion of Season Four, so the baby became an unresolved plot thread.
In the years that have followed, there have been discussions amongst fans that the baby would have been a Kryptonian from the future.
Why was Lois & Clark cancelled?
Lois & Clark was cancelled due to a rapid decline in ratings over the course of the show’s fourth season. In the US, 12.2 million viewers tuned in for the Season Four opener, Lord of the Flys, however, the final episode, Family Hour only attracted 4.9 million viewers.
If Lois & Clark was being cancelled, why did the series end on a cliffhanger?
Despite a decline in ratings, the showrunners believed Lois & Clark would return for a fifth season. ABC had announced plans to bring the show back for one final run, allowing the cliffhanger to be resolved.
But due to the poor ratings of the final few episodes, ABC changed its mind and cancelled the series after Family Hour had aired. As a result, the showrunners were unable to change the outcome of the final episode and the series was left open-ended.
Why did Lois & Clark’s ratings drop off?
The show’s ratings had begun to take a dip towards the end of Season Three and remained lower than usual at the beginning of Season Four. The ratings peaked with the episode, Swear to God, This Time We’re Not Kidding, but started to drop-off again shortly after.
From this episode onward, the ratings began a steady decline, prompting ABC to move Lois & Clark to a new timeslot for the final half of the season. But this timeslot only made matters worse and ratings continued to fall, hitting an all-time low of 4.4 million viewers with the show’s penultimate episode, Toy Story.
Has Lois & Clark been released in full on home video?
During the 1990s, selected episodes of the show were released on VHS, covering all of Season One and some episodes of Season Two. However, during the ‘00s the show was finally given a full release, with all four seasons made available on DVD and through digital platforms.
Thank you for stopping by I’ll Get Drive-Thru to read this post about Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman. For more DC-related content, be sure to take a look around this blog and don’t forget to check out the recommended reads below.
4 Responses to Why was Lois & Clark cancelled? …and other key questions
Great series, showing Lois & Clark romantic side. The baby in my opinion was left by HG Wells and it is a Clark from another dimension.
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The show was cancelled because the new owner of ABC (Disney) wanted to reinstate “The Wonderful World Of Disney” in its time slot. Ratings was just an excuse.
they must bring back where it was left off because i want to know who that baby belong too. and what is his name because it must have an happy ending not a worse ending that is why we need to know if it could be clark junior or sunior so i suggest this show must go on please. do this one with the flash or arrow or shark hunter or blackcannary or spider man or batman there are many that played in justice league movie.
I truly believe, and always have, that the baby was the first born of Lt. Ching and lady Zara of New Krypton! They gave their first born to Lois and Clark to raise on earth because of how Clark was raised! They wanted the child to have the same traits and morals as Clark/Superman! Either that or the baby was an orphaned child from New Krypton that needed a good home, although I still believe my first thought of it belonging to Lt. Ching and Lady Zara to be the actual answer!
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