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SMALLVILLE DESTINY by Last Survivor

I’ve been watching this show since I was 13, and I’m now 24. Having grown up with it, I’ve become more and more aware of it’s weaknesses, but at the same time I still feel that it has some very good moments where the Clark Kent we all know and love shines through. Unfortunately, those moments are few and far between in the series. I’ve always thought that those quality moments could be strung together in a way that gave us a glimpse into what Smallville could be at its greatest, but it was always just a dream.

Now, thanks to Last Survivor and Smallville Destiny, that dream is a reality.

When I first started watching this I expected it to be an intriguing idea, but not much more. Well I was in for quite a surprise. Smallville Destiny is great! I can’t believe how good this edit is, from both a technical and entertainment standpoint.

First of all, the intro and new theme were amazing. I loved the parallels between Clark and Lex, and the song was perfect. In fact, all of the soundtrack was vastly improved. It went from a really good TV show soundtrack to an epic movie soundtrack. I feel that it was one of the best things about the edit.

The episodes used to create this edit were great choices I have to say. I especially liked Ryan’s arc at the end of part 1 – it was a perfect episode to show Clark growing into his Superman persona, especially with the allusions to Warrior Angel. And what an ending! I always felt they wasted that song in the series, it’s so much better here – I got goosebumps!

Like BionicBob said, we don’t get to see a lot of Clark in action, but that never really bothered me. In the series, it was always the same thing anyway – he runs in at the last second and saves the victim who just happens to pass out/not see him. Now, Clark’s heroic moments are saved till the end of each part, and the payoff is much better. This is especially true for the second part, with such a phenomenal apex and Clark at his most Superman-esque. Plus, the edit holds up to it’s name: it’s about Kal-el’s destiny, and how he becomes the man of steel, not an action romp.

While it doesn’t replace the show, Smallville Destiny is a wonderful compliment to it – and in many ways it’s better. You can really feel the parallels between Clark and Lex far more than in the original, 22 episode season. And you can see more clearly how their lives are shaped, and what events lead to them taking the paths they eventually do. In the end there is still a lot for us to wonder about, but that last little post-credit scene gave me hope for a SD:2! :D

I can’t recommend this edit highly enough, whether you’re a fan of the show, or even just a Superman fan in general. Maybe it’s nostalgia, but it was the most fun I’ve had watching a TV show in a long time. Thanks, Last Survivor!

9/10
 
Thanks for the kind comments BigDamnHero. I have to say that the feedback I’ve had has been really heart warming, and reviews like yours really do make the months of editing and re-editing worthwhile.

I’m glad the choice of music pleased you. Always been a bit of Jerry Goldsmith fan, so I was delighted to be able to use some of his amazing music during the edit, particularly for the main title theme. There are other snatches of his music spread throughout the edit too, and any Supergirl soundtrack fans will no doubt be able to spot where they are.

I still wanted to use the Remy Zero “Save Me” song, as it’s so identified with the programme, but I also wanted to hold it back as long as possible (hence the cutting of Remy Zero actually performing it at the dance). I’m glad it seems to have worked effectively.

I’ve always liked the Ryan storyline. It really does bring something extra out of Clark and for me sees Tom Welling starting to develop as an actor, and it did seem to be the perfect way to end Part 1.


As for the possibility of SD:2? Well, the positive response certainly helps motivate me to do it. However, I have a couple of edits I want to do first, one of which may take sometime. However, I have already been looking at season 2 episodes to see what kind of sequel I could build, so watch this space.


Thanks again :)
 
Just so you know, I posted my review on the edit's page on Monday.
 
Hey Omaru1982....

Yep, thanks to you too. Really glad you enjoyed the edit so much :)

Making Whitney appear less annoying was certainly an intention of mine. He is very prominent in this edit, and I even played around with the idea of almost trying to take him out completely. However, even he has a role to play in Clark's developlment or destiny if you like. Removing him entirely meant the there was no reason at all why Clark and Lana would not be together and really damaged the emotional impact of the story and character development. At least now I hope people at least can feel and maybe sympathise with what Whitney is going through.

The whole kryptonite angle, particularly Lana's necklace in the normal episodic versions, was something which bothered me when I initially saws the 1st season. By cutting that out, and really leaving it until the last act of the story I hope it lends more surprise and impact to the finale. True, you have to go with it a bit in terms of Jonathan has previously been aware that the meteor rocks do harm Clark, but hopefully it works.

Anyways, thanks for your comments... much appreciated :)
 
LastSurvivor said:
Making Whitney appear less annoying was certainly an intention of mine. He is very prominent in this edit, and I even played around with the idea of almost trying to take him out completely. However, even he has a role to play in Clark's developlment or destiny if you like. Removing him entirely meant the there was no reason at all why Clark and Lana would not be together and really damaged the emotional impact of the story and character development. At least now I hope people at least can feel and maybe sympathise with what Whitney is going through.
I couldn't agree more. I remember watching season 1 and hating Whitney even as his dad was dying, which is a terrible thing to think! But there was just nothing redeemable about his character. In this version I found myself actually liking Whitney. And he works wonderfully as a foil for Clark. I think a really big test for Clark in the first season is Lana--she's still with Whitney even though she's starting to have feelings for Clark, and even tries to act on them a few times. But Clark, knowing Whitney is going through a tough time, turns her down (even though he would want nothing more than to smooch her in the loft) because it's the right thing to do.

If I were in his shoes no power on Earth could have prevented some Lana gropage, but that's what separates Clark from the rest of us, and this is a really good way of showing that quality when he's still a hormonal teenager. And at the end of the season when Whitney is leaving and asks Clark to watch after Lana, it's an even bigger test for Clark.

LastSurvivor said:
The whole kryptonite angle, particularly Lana's necklace in the normal episodic versions, was something which bothered me when I initially saws the 1st season. By cutting that out, and really leaving it until the last act of the story I hope it lends more surprise and impact to the finale. True, you have to go with it a bit in terms of Jonathan has previously been aware that the meteor rocks do harm Clark, but hopefully it works.
Everyone in the world knows what kryptonite is, so this isn't really a problem. And again I thought it worked way better in your version than in the regular show. I got so tired of Clark wriggling around on the ground at the end of every episode that by the end of the season I was thinking to myself, "how the hell can he even live in this town if that green shit is so abundant!" But saving it for a final battle gives it a much bigger impact.

Again, amazing job.
 
I started watching Smallville when it first came out. I loved the show. Although I would get the occasional ribbing from friends (but i had the perfect retort "What guy doesn't wish they were Superman? What guy wouldn't want to date Lana Lang?!"). Anyway, I stopped watching around Season 3 or 4 and then periodically tuned in every now and then when Green Arrow showed up etc. But I really did enjoy the early episodes of the series so I was excited to hear about LastSurvivor's fanedit.

DVD Design: I really liked the DVD Menu Design. Music, Animated Scene Selection Menus. Great Job!

The Edit: I really have to applaud LastSurvivor's efforts on this edit. I can't begin to imagine what a huge undertaking this was. To sift through 20+ (or however many) episodes and distill it into a coherent and entertaining story. Although knocking out the majority of the "Freak of the Week" storylines was a major part of the edit, the decisions of the storylines to keep in were more interesting (and i imagine the harder part of the edit to do). I liked the choices that LastSurvivor made (the elderly woman who was psychic, Ryan's storyline - a nice way to end part 1 btw!). The merge of the Season 1 finale and Season 2 premiere was very well done too. And wrapped up with a nice ending. This was an extremely enjoyable fanedit! Great job.

Technical: The video editing was well done but what really stood out to me was the audio editing. In my opinion it was nearly flawless. And I always read on the forums, or read about rejected edits and it almost always has to do with shoddy audio editing. Audio editing is arguably the most difficult part about fanedits. So great job on that!

I rate this a 9/10. Excellent firstling! I look forward to LastSurvivor's future fanedits.
 
Hey Gatos...

Very much appreciate your kind comments. Nice to see that the blood, sweat and tears I spent over the DVD menu design, animated scene selection etc paid off ;)

I can't begin to imagine what a huge undertaking this was. To sift through 20+ (or however many) episodes and distill it into a coherent and entertaining story

Certainly wasn't easy and I lost count of how many different cuts I sat down and viewed before I was finally happy with the end product (enough to know virtually every scrap of dialogue off by heart!!)

what really stood out to me was the audio editing

I really am very passionate about audio editing when it comes to fanedits. Some can almost be ruined by sloppy sound edits, so I am relieved to see that it all seems to work well in Smallville Destiny.

Thanks again for taking the time and trouble to write a review.
 
LastSurvivor
Its a huge work, i think u accomplish something i wnated to see the first time i saw the tv serie, all the meteors freak i wnated remove and keep only the real superman young stories. You made a fantastik job and i wish you could the same for the rest of the serie and all the seasons....Its a dream...
Good job again!!!!
 
barbelin... Thanks for the kind words and welcome to the forum :)

As I have touched upon earlier in this thread, I am certainly thinking about the possibility of a Smallville Destiny II, and have been looking through the season 2 companion book just to get some ideas. However, this will be either later this year or maybe next year until I get the chance to actually start work on it. Anyway, glad you enjoyed it.
 
I'm really looking forward to watching this, but it might be a couple of weeks because of my bandwidth restrictions. :p
 
I'm really looking forward to watching this, but it might be a couple of weeks because of my bandwidth restrictions.

There's always the AVI version... although I would always recommend the DVD over that if at all possible. I hope it's worth taking up your bandwidth!! ;)
 
Yeah, I almost never bother with digital files if a DVD version is available. I should grab the AVI to watch it in time for voting purposes, though.
 
Yeah, I almost never bother with digital files if a DVD version is available. I should grab the AVI to watch it in time for voting purposes, though.

Well, to be honest, as nice as it is to possibly get votes from people for the fanedit of the month, I think it's more important to see it in the best quality you can - so, if you have to wait to get the DVD file, maybe you should do just that ;) Either way, I'll be interested to hear your thoughts once you've seen it.
 
Unlike many people around here, I never really followed Smallville loyally, and the first season has a lot to do with it. Frankly, my opinion of it is that it, with its dreadfully lame and repetitive "freak-of-the-week" structure, was so bad overall that it's a wonder it even got renewed for a second one. Okay, I may be being too harsh, but I got the feeling that every single episode was the same.

However, beneath that surface there happened to be a surprisingly engaging dose of human drama, and it took Last Survivor to reveal it in his firstling by removing all the rubble and putting together a story about people, which is what all great stories are about. It does not turn it into The Godfather, it's still a whinefest and the dialogue is more akin to what a teenager would write than to what they would say, but the relations between the characters are highly enjoyable and you get to like them all (yes, Whitney too!) It's true that it could have been trimmed a little further, and it's true that the limitations of the material sometimes prevent some points to be well-rounded (I'm referring specifically to Clark's quite out-of-character avoidance of Chloe when their quasi-affair starts developing, caused by the removal of that episode's freak), but for what LS had to work with, the result is more than solid. Do not expect an action movie, though, there's precious little of that, this is Smallville as pure drama. The action/adventure excitement, however, does kick in for the last hour of the ride, which might be the best of it.

Technically this is pretty much flawless, with no hard cuts whatsoever, and audio and video quality being consistently fine. I had the chance to see an earlier workprint by LS that showed great promise, which the final version more than fulfilled. This was a very good firstling that has me joining the popular acclaim for similar LS edits of further seasons of the show. 9/10 overall.
 
Thanks DwightFry... not only for your review, but also your tireless support and help during the edit. I must admit to everyone that a handful of edits in the second half particularly were suggestions by DwightFry, ones that I probably would not have thought of doing without his insight - so a big thank you there.

Yeah, the first season does get dragged down a lot with the whole freak of the week episodes - they are just too many of them. But the show was finding its feet and whilst it's certainly far from the strongest season, I do believe that the underlying story arc and character development was strong enough to make it a must see show for many people. However, I am glad that this edit seems to have trimmed away most of the fat and produced the central core of what the 1st season was about.

A sequel to Destiny will happen, but work will not start until much later this year so I'm afraid everyone will have to wait until next year sometime for season 2 to get the treatment. I have to say though, I do actually want to try and do an edit for each season... crazy I know, but I'd like to have a go :)

Thanks again.
 
I finally downloaded them and have burned Disc 1...but it won't let me burn Disc 2. Something about not being able to create a layer break.

I see there is a file called SPREPARE.SPSS. What do I do with it?
 
Hey Ripplin... apparently all my edits appear to have this file SPREPARE.SPSS... I have no idea why DVD Arhitect throws this up, but apparently it's not needed at all so I would not worry about that.

I've never heard of anybody having problems with burning Disc 2 because it can't create a layer break. Anybody else having this problem, or anybody else have any ideas?
 
I've had a little look on the internet about this, and it seems it may depend on the burning software you are using. Some burners will actually ask you to create the layer break, even if there is actually one already in the source itself. Not sure if that's the problem you're having but i would suggest searching the net a little.

What burn software you using?
 
I was gonna use Imgburn, but I'll just try it in Nero now. Thanks for the quick replies. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Update: Ok, I burned it in Nero (which also threw a ton of error warnings at me) and it works. :)

That was weird.
 
Nero gave me a warning for The Ugly West as well. Wouldn't even let me burn it. ImgBurn went through with it without errors. Go figure, it's the other way around :)
 
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