Article by Rennie Cowan
Article by Rennie Cowan
This is a fun article that appeared on the old site The Boy of Steel TV. Often, when one watches the 'Superboy' TV show, one might actually realize that Superboy was ahead of its' time. Looking at say the Sci-Fi channel today, or movies like 'The Matrix' it is hard to argue against this notion. Ever notice that the whole Bureau for Extra-Normal Matters plot that occured in season 3 and 4 of "The Adventures of Superboy" (TV series) resembles 'The X-Files' TV show? Or, ever notice the string of plots from 'Superboy's' most cherished "Roads Not Taken" part 1 and 2, where Superboy travels into alternate Earths (meeting different versions of himself where history is totally different)? It is very similar to the later popular mid-90's show 'Sliders'.
Chris Carter, the creator of the 'The X-Files' may have never seen 'Superboy', but it is fun to compare more recent televsion shows, and recent films we see in the theaters, taking into account that 'Superboy' aired prior to 'The X-Files', 'Sliders', and the theatrical release of 'The Matrix' (NOTE: watch the episodes "Know Thine Enemy" Part 1 and 2 for a comparison of 'The Matrix').
Taking a look at 'The X-Files' we see a pairing of two government investigators (or Agents). In 'Superboy', Clark and Lana are field agents (interning as a field agent, actually) and in 'The X-Files' we have Mulder and Scully who are FBI Agents. Both pairs are continually assigned to check out and investigate unexplained occurances during each episode(s). Clark and Lana act as partners to unravel recent or sometimes ancient mysteries. Much the same as what Mulder and Scully did...investigate the paranoia and unexplained occurances. Both plots appear to focus on the super-natural for story-telling; each plot would entail that the two pairs come across dangers during their investagations. This led to unexpected adventures and discoveries and usually by the end of each episode they would solve their case. The main difference is that in 'Superboy' the solving would be done mostly by Superboy's help and super powers.
So, could Chris Carter, the creator of the reknowned 'X-Files' series been inspired by 'Superboy's' 3rd or 4th seasons? Probably not. But some food for thought here--if you take away Superboy and make Clark and Lana regular FBI agents...then the 3rd and 4th seasons of 'Superboy' would be very similar, if not identical to 'The X-Files'. This is just an interesting theory of mine, and the same could be said for 'Sliders' and 'The Matrix'. But of course, most of the ideas in 'Superboy' have been floating around in comic-bookdom for years. However, I just like to think that 'Superboy' took that extra step into the future...a step many were not willing to take on film until years later....