Friday's Smallville was the last new episode of the year, but it ended with a trailer for upcoming episodes that revealed some very cool characters we'll be meeting down the line.
We already knew that the big Justice Society storyline -- airing in February as the TV-Movie Absolute Justice -- would introduce Hawkman, Doctor Fate and Stargirl but it turned out those three would not be the only ones we'd see. The quick-cutting trailer showed what was unmistakably the Sandman - the original, gas mask wearing Wesley Dodds incarnation. Even more exciting was a blink and you miss it look at a man's hand wearing a very familiar green ring.
Smallville producers have noted that they can't use several characters currently in the pipeline for movies, and that has included Green Lantern, who is the subject of a just about to shoot new film starring Ryan Reynolds as Hal Jordan. However, it looks like the powers that be at DC and Warner Bros. relaxed their restrictions at least a little bit, as this is obviously the ring belonging to original Green Lantern (and Justice Society member) Alan Scott.
Given that we've only heard about Hawkman, Fate and Stargirl meeting Clark Kent, it seems very likely that Sandman and Green Lantern are only appearing in flashbacks, and who knows if we'll even see more of Alan Scott than what the trailer shows. Still, their appearance at all is notable for DC Comics fans, and continues Smallville's rise as a growing television version of the DC Universe.