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The Untold Truth Of Superman & Lois

Creating a show about the Man of Steel is a tough task. It isn't only about showcasing him as the most powerful being on Earth, but also about how he navigates everyday life as the hopeful and honest-to-a-fault Clark Kent. Yet, The CW's dramatic series "Superman & Lois" finds the perfect balancing act, as it's an exciting and action-packed superhero series that's all about Dom Toretto's favorite topic: family.

When the Arrowverse debuted in 2012, no one suspected that a Superman show was even a possibility, since the Man of Steel and his batty friend from Gotham City were out of bounds. However, after Tyler Hoechlin's appearances as Kal-El on "Supergirl" were well-received, the cogs at The CW turned, and more serious conversations started happening between the relevant parties. Rather than just rehash the origin story, "Superman & Lois" takes a novel approach, in a timeline when Big Blue is more than established as Earth's hero. That said, there are other challenges he and Lois need to face — namely, raising two teenage boys in Smallville. Let's dive right in and find out more about the story behind "Superman & Lois."

Elizabeth Tulloch is married to Superman and Batman

Onscreen, Elizabeth Tulloch and Tyler Hoechlin make the picture-perfect combo as the titular couple in "Superman & Lois." There's a natural chemistry between the two of them that feels like it was squeezed right out of the pages of the Golden Age of Comics. But at home, Tulloch has her own, different version of Superman — and Batman, too.

Tulloch is married to her "Grimm" co-star David Giuntoli, who actually voiced the Caped Crusader in the 2021 animated film, "Batman: Soul of the Dragon." Here's another interesting trivia item: Giuntoli actually auditioned to play Superman in Zack Snyder's "Man of Steel." While it had long been rumored that he was one of the major names considered for the part, Tulloch confirmed his audition to Rappler. He might not have secured the coveted gig, but got the chance to marry Lois Lane, anyway.

Tyler Hoechlin auditioned for Man of Steel

When it came time to plan "Superman & Lois," Tyler Hoechlin and Elizabeth Tulloch's established existence in The CW's Arrowverse made them ideal candidates for the titular roles. Hoechlin's time on "Supergirl" wasn't his first rodeo with the DC character, however. In fact, he could've had the red cape in his closet much sooner than 2016.

Speaking to Den of Geek, Hoechlin confirmed that he auditioned for the lead role in "Man of Steel," but it wasn't quite what he expected. "I remember looking at the pages and going, 'my gut instinct is telling me something completely different than what I think they're looking for,'" he said, before adding that he decided to go with his gut instinct on the day. Despite not getting the role, Hoechlin felt it was a learning experience for how he should approach reading for parts in the future and being authentic. We do wonder if he bumped into Tulloch's husband in between auditions, though.

Jordan Elsass doesn't want Jon Kent to get powers

In the comics, Jon Kent is known as both Superboy and Superman, as he shares the same Kryptonian powers as his father. Truth be told, they even look alike when they're dressed in the blue-and-red suit. "Superman & Lois" flipped the script on this detail, giving Jonathan's brother, Jordan, all the powers on the show. At the same time, there's still the possibility that Jonathan could develop his superhuman abilities further down the line.

If it was up to actor Jordan Elsass, however, his character, Jonathan, would remain powerless. "I'd almost rather he not have powers, or if he's going to have powers, have them be temporary," Elsass told DC Comics. "Jon's such a good person and I think seeing that being tested because of the fact that he doesn't have powers is something that would be so interesting to play with." Well, "Superman & Lois" hasn't been scared to deviate from the source material, so we'll keep our eyes peeled to see how Jonathan develops (or not) throughout the series.

Tyler Hoechlin was cast as Superman without an audition

After Tyler Hoechlin went through the fruitless process of auditioning for "Man of Steel," he had a far smoother road to playing The CW's Superman. This time around, he didn't need to read for the part, as it was offered to him on the spot. So, how did this stroke of good luck happen?

In a conversation with Men's Health, Hoechlin discussed how one of his agents informed him that a meeting he was taking was to chat about the casting of Superman for "Supergirl." "I went in and we talked for about a half an hour and got to know each other better," Hoechlin said. "They said, 'We're looking to do this. Is that something you'd be interested in?' And I said, 'Yeah, sure. Let's talk about it!'" The capper? Hoechlin was the only meeting that the producers took for the part. Sounds like the kind of audition process that every actor in Hollywood dreams of!

Tyler Hoechlin's Superman was meant to be a short-term gig

Time flies when Superman is himself flying around. In the case of Tyler Hoechlin, he's already been The CW's Superman for more than half a decade, and there are no signs of him handing over the keys to the Fortress of Solitude anytime soon. That wasn't always the plan to begin with, though.

Initially, Superman was only going to appear in the Arrowverse's crossover episodes and special events, and Hoechlin was more than fine with that. "Honestly, I was at a point in my life and my career where I didn't want to commit to something that was a full-time thing on a show," Hoechlin said in an interview with Den of Geek. After years of appearing on "Teen Wolf," he found this lighter schedule to be perfect and freeing for him. This all changed, though, when he found that Greg Berlanti was actively developing "Superman & Lois" with Todd Helbing. Fortunately, he'd fallen in love with playing the character by then, and wasn't about to pass up the opportunity to lead his own Superman TV show.

Adam Rayner didn't know Morgan Edge's big twist

As an antagonist, Morgan Edge is fairly predictable. He's a mogul who uses any means necessary to get what he wants; in short, he's the poster child for every corporate megalomaniac. Predictably, most fans sniffed out that Edge wasn't about to be a good guy on "Superman & Lois," either, but no one could've expected the curve ball in which he'd be revealed as Tal-Rho, Superman's controversial half-brother.

Turns out that actor Adam Rayner was in the dark about this juicy plot twist, as well. Discussing the show and the revelation that he'd be playing Tyler Hoechlin's brother, Rayner said, "I didn't know, actually. When I took the job, I thought I was Morgan Edge — the shady billionaire. It was revealed to me in a conversation with Todd [Helbing] fairly early on, and I was thrilled." He added that this made the role even more intriguing, since he'd be portraying a character who was "pretending to be someone else the whole time." Plus, who wouldn't want to play Supes' brother?

Tyler Hoechlin hasn't watched a single Superman movie

Stop the presses! The guy playing Superman on TV hasn't watched any of the "Superman" films?! According to Tyler Hoechlin, he has never laid eyes on Christopher Reeve, Brandon Routh, or Henry Cavill's interpretations of Big Blue. It's a shocker, isn't it?

"I've not seen a single Superman movie," he told The New York Times. "I'm usually so afraid to say that, but it just feels better to say it. It was not because I didn't want to, but as a kid, they just weren't the movies I saw." Apart from not being too invested in the films, Hoechlin revealed that he didn't want to see them after he'd been cast in "Supergirl," just in case he'd "be emulating or shying away from someone else's version." So, what we see onscreen is entirely his interpretation of the Man of Steel, and isn't influenced in the slightest by other big-screen versions of the character. Hopefully, he's at least read an issue of "Action Comics" or two.

The show was influenced by Friday Night Lights

"Superman & Lois" sets itself apart from many other superhero series and movies by focusing on the family dynamic. It isn't only about Clark flying from one side of the world to the other to stop villains from taking over; it's also about him dealing with everyday crises at home. In fact, his roles as a father and husband might be even harder than anything he's done as a superhero.

At the 2021 Television Critics Association winter panel (via SYFY), series showrunner Todd Helbing revealed that he and fellow producer Greg Berlanti deliberately set out to make a show about the Man of Steel that was different from anything that came before it. Instead of looking to other comic book shows or movies for influence, they turned to other genres. "We talked a lot about shows like 'Everwood' and 'Friday Night Lights,' and that this would be a family drama with Superman in it," Helbing said. Judging by the amount of football scenes on "Superman & Lois," it isn't too hard to see the "Friday Night Lights" inspiration here.

Wolé Parks actually auditioned to be Lex Luthor

At the end of the first episode of "Superman & Lois," the AI addresses the mysterious man — the Stranger — who fought Clark as "Captain Luthor." Naturally, the fanbase went into rapture, as this all but confirmed that Wolé Parks was playing Lex Luthor on the show. In actuality, this was just one of the many swerves that the series had planned for us, as Parks' character was eventually revealed to be John Henry Irons, aka Steel, from an alternate universe.

Not only were the fans shocked by this sudden switcheroo, but Parks himself was also caught off guard in the beginning, as he was under the impression that he would be playing Luthor on the show. "I was just excited about the idea of playing Lex Luthor," Parks told Entertainment Weekly. "And then Todd [Helbing] calls and was like, 'Hey, I want to talk to you about the character.'" The actor told the showrunner that he'd rather "find out as we go along," but Helbing insisted that it was important and revealed the truth about the character. Parks said that he became emotional when he realized he'd be portraying Steel, as the Black comic-book character meant so much to him in his youth.

Jordan Elsass thought the Stranger was Lex Luthor

The writers and producers weren't just keeping plot secrets from the audience — they were also ensuring that the cast didn't have total insight into the twists and turns that were around the bend.

Jordan Elsass, who plays Jonathan Kent, one of Lois and Clark's two sons in "Superman & Lois," explained to DC Comics that he was also unaware of some of the major plot twists, especially the big Lex Luthor fake-out. "Yeah, I had no idea that the Stranger was John Henry Irons until quite a bit later — I'd say around Episode 4 or 5," he said. "It was a shock to all of us, I think." Honestly, the set of "Superman & Lois" sounds as tight-lipped as the notoriously secretive MCU film productions. It seems to work, though, so maybe this is the approach that every show and film should follow.