We've spent months talking about the major departures that have plagued Smallville's upcoming eighth season. Michael Rosenbaum and Kristin Kreuk are out as regulars next year, while creators Al Gough and Miles Millar have also moved on to other projects. Now, thanks to Kristin at E!Online, we finally have news about someone joining the cast for season 8. Justin Hartley, who plays Green Arrow/Oliver Queen on the CW show, will be joining Smallville as a series regular. This news comes shortly after the CW decided not to pick up the pilot for Hartley's medical drama, Austin Golden Hour.
Aside from the addition of Hartley, we also found out more about Kristin Kreuk's involvement next year, as well as information on the two new villains that will be causing trouble for Clark Kent.
Hartley's addition to the show will give fans a chance to find out a lot more about Oliver Queen. The series plans to delve into Queen's origins as opposed to spending tons of time with his superhero alter ego. It's also likely that his complicated relationship with Lois (Erica Durance) will move to the forefront.
Having another romance on the show should distract fans from the lack of Clark (Tom Welling) and Lana action. The studio is still negotiating with Kristin Kreuk to determine how many episodes she'll appear in next year, though it's likely to be around six or seven. That won't provide much time for new adventures with Lana, but it should give the writers an opportunity to wrap up her character if it's the final season.
Back in May, it was announced that two new villains will emerge in Smallville's eighth season: Doomsday and a duplicitous female that would be familiar to comic book fans. The CW has now announced that the female villain's name is Tess, while Doomsday will be going by the alter ego of Davis Bloome. I don't know of a villainess named Tess in Superman lore, but since Doomsday has never been known as Davis Bloome, it may be a moniker invented for the series. We're still no closer to knowing who this familiar female villain is, though I'm hoping it's the DC Comics character known as Demolitia, if only for her hilarious name.
Smallville will return for its eighth season this fall on the CW. Fans should get ready to cheer loudly when Hartley's name appears in the opening titles every week.