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Rare Instances of Smallville Miscasting! - tasabian [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
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Rare Instances of Smallville Miscasting! [Aug. 15th, 2011|08:37 pm]
tasabian
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Firstly....Watch this:A Clex Vid unlike ANY other! Thanks to norwich36 and talitha78 for the recs.

Smallville made plenty of writing mistakes over the years, IMO, but usually the casting directors got it right with the guest actors. That's why the following casting mistakes stuck out for me...(subjective of course!)



(You'll notice names are disrupted by asterisks, just in case any of the actors are self-googlers...I hate to hurt anyone's feelings.)

Did they bring in Patrick C*ssidy to play Lana's bio-Dad because he had guested on Lois & Clark back in the day? It's not that he does a bad job; it's just that for the SV universe, he's so...ordinary. As written, the role of Henry Small is disappointingly dull and Cassidy perhaps had no choice but to play for realism but it makes him a very odd presence in S2, as though he wandered over from a non-genre show like Gilmore Girls.
Who did it better? Michael Ironsides had a juicier role and a juicier presence as Sam Lane.
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William B. D*vis is Vancouver Acting Royalty and he started off his SV career just right, as a corrupt mayor exchanging barbs with Lex. But it went wrong, so wrong, in Relic when in a Scooby Doo worthy plot, Mayor Tate is supposed to be in mortal terror of what he thinks is a ghost. And because WBD is a good sport, he really goes for it; we get everything but teeth-chattering and "You're a G-G-Ghost!!!"
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And HERE's what's scaring him: Clark with a different hair part. Oh, Cigarette Smoking Man, how could they do this to you?
Who did it better? Mitchell Kosterman as the compromised Sheriff.
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Robert P*cardo's performance is fine but he simply doesn't fit the visual the show had built up of Edward Teague. Could RP's Teague and Jane Seymour really conceive a Jensen? Lends credence to the notion that Lionel & Genevieve had a fling & Jason was the result.
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Jessica P*arker Kennedy is a very pretty girl but Plastique should be volatile and scary & that does not come across in any of her SV appearances. (She does play up the vulnerable side well but the audience should be a little nervous whenever P's onscreen.) Who did it better?: Lizzy Caplan & Sarah Carter made Tina & Alicia scarily unpredictable.
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Helen Sl*ter is lovely but it has to be said: hers is a very wan, ladylike Lara. There's tea-drinking and standing around in gowns - the script isn't great but HS doesn't exactly fire things up either. Who did it better? Lynda Carter kicking ass in Progeny...maybe Chloe & Clark should have traded Moms.
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Julian S*nds gives...I don't know, a "decorous" performance? But like HS, there's not much juice there and he's hampered by bearing no resemblance to Terence Stamp's Jor-EL and looking exactly like an older version of Oliver. Seriously - Chloe's about to get confused & make out with him here. Who did it better? Chris Heyerdahl as Zor-El - as underwritten as the rest of the Els but CH puts a thousand volts into the limp script and steals every moment of every scene he's in.
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And the worst miscasting in SV history....

Michael C*ssidy as Grant/Julian. Now I know from other shows that this guy can act and the Breaking In make-up artist has tweeted that he and Rosenbaum have similar cheeky personalities. Which should have made the chemistry sizzle and his "I'm a Luthor!" revelation into a "but, of course!" moment for the audience. But the surprise doesn't work at all because MC acts nothing like a Luthor, more like Jimmy Stewart's midwestern great grandson. Watching Grant/Julian is watching an actor flailing to make his role make sense - despite MC's valiant effort, he doesn't succeed and it's uncomfortable to watch (and not only because his plotline sucked for both Lex & Lois.) He might be the only actor in SV history not to spark with either MR or JG. I'll bet dollars to donuts, MC wasn't told where his plotline was going & made the best of it; as far as I know, he has never talked about his SV stint since leaving.
Who did it better? Cassidy Freeman, Conor Stanhope, Paul Wesley, Lucas Grabeel - all to the Luthor manner born!

Agree? Disagree? Have Other candidates?
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: seagull2eagle
2011-08-16 12:54 am (UTC)
OMG. That Vid. OMG, THAT VID!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I'm in love with twisted genius. ;D
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 01:02 am (UTC)
Is it not the best thing ever? You think you know where it's headed, and then...
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[User Picture]From: miss_tress
2011-08-16 01:18 am (UTC)
The other problem with Patrick C*ssidy is that he was the third Lana parental unit who looked not a smidge Asian. A bit of a problem when casting parents for Ms. Kreuk. Same thing with Helen Sl*ter plus Julian S*nds equaling Tom Welling.

"You're a G-G-Ghost!!!"
No, just the regular kind. /Futurama Quote

Michael C*ssidy as Grant/Julian.
The true testament on how little of an impression that the actor/character made with me is that I keep forgetting that the plot even happened. Every time someone refers to it I go, "Oh yeah! I guess I do remember that happening."
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 01:34 am (UTC)
No, just the regular kind. /Futurama Quote
LOL!

The other problem with Patrick C*ssidy is that he was the third Lana parental unit who looked not a smidge Asian. A bit of a problem when casting parents for Ms. Kreuk. Same thing with Helen Sl*ter plus Julian S*nds equaling Tom Welling.
Sarah Douglas + Julian maybe...

The true testament on how little of an impression that the actor/character made with me is that I keep forgetting that the plot even happened.
His bizarre pre-death monologue where he rambles on about steak and compares Lex to Oscar Wilde is burned into my brain, not in a good way....poor MC.

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[User Picture]From: jeannev
2011-08-16 01:32 am (UTC)
Great, great list.

To me, the most egregious casting mistakes were Helen Slater and Julian Sands. And while Lynda Carter did a far better acting job in Progeny, the truth is that she was terribly miscast in the role of Chloe's mother. I said it then, and I'll keep saying...Helen Slater would've been a far better Moira Sullvian, and Lynda Carter would've been a far better Lara. In looks and personality (at least Lynda Carter looks like she could've birthed a Tom Welling).

I HATE when shows try to ignore things that came before so they can do whatever the hell they want, and thats a big reason I couldn't get on board with Julian Sands as Jor-El. Because we had SEEN Jor-El already, and Lara actually mistakes Clark for his own father in Blue. So don't suddenly tell me he looks Julian Sands.

I know this is probably a controversial opinion, but I think Callum Blue was miscast as Zod.

And I'll add Gil Bellows as Maxwell Lord, though that character was never used well anyway.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 01:42 am (UTC)
And I'll add Gil Bellows as Maxwell Lord, though that character was never used well anyway.
See, I forgot all about him & he's another good actor that didn't get a chance to strut his stuff.

Helen Slater would've been a far better Moira Sullvian, and Lynda Carter would've been a far better Lara. In looks and personality (at least Lynda Carter looks like she could've birthed a Tom Welling).
HS might have done well with Moira's vulnerability too & she looks rather like AM ...and I can't imagine LC drinking tea. Can you imagine how epic a fight might have been between her Lara & CH's Zor-EL?

I couldn't get on board with Julian Sands as Jor-El. Because we had SEEN Jor-El already, and Lara actually mistakes Clark for his own father in Blue. So don't suddenly tell me he looks Julian Sands.
I will always be puzzled by that decision - JS could have been brought in as another character, if they were set on him (preferably a villain because that's his forte.) It's like they settled on a random British thespian with a plummy accent and a little free time for filming.

I know this is probably a controversial opinion, but I think Callum Blue was miscast as Zod.
A little too affable for Zod. I enjoyed him in Dominion but Zod's first quality has got to be scariness (which my bebbeh MR didn't quite capture either.)

Edited at 2011-08-16 01:42 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: firebunny
2011-08-16 02:52 am (UTC)
The fail that is SV's Lara Lor-Van is partly due to HS and partly due to the writing. She was just written so blandly. Although HS didn't bring anything to the role, she was on Supernatural between her SV stints and she wasn't half bad there. With a better, less Lana-fied Lara I think she would have been more enjoyable.

And they were never going to cast her as Chloe's mom. They wanted the Supergirls together. They should have cast her Kara's mother. The meta would have been so much better.

I had no problem with Lynda Carter as Moira Sullivan, but she would have been awesome as Lara Lor-Van. Not only do they look like LC and TW could be related it also would have messed with the Superman/WonderWoman shippers by making the pairing somewhat incestuous. (Not that I have anything against Superman/WonderWoman shippers. I just like messing with people.)

So, my ideal maternal recasts would be
Kara's mother = Helen Sl*ter
Clark's mother = Lynda Carter
Chloe's mother = Gillian Anderson

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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 03:22 am (UTC)
Chloe's mother = Gillian Anderson
GA would have been awesome...they look alike & wow, the confrontation with Lex would have been electric!

Not only do they look like LC and TW could be related it also would have messed with the Superman/WonderWoman shippers by making the pairing somewhat incestuous.
Heh, I'd have been just fine with that!

Although HS didn't bring anything to the role, she was on Supernatural between her SV stints and she wasn't half bad there. With a better, less Lana-fied Lara I think she would have been more enjoyable.
I needed her to kick a little ass, not just stand around & wring her hands. She was much more fun on SPN.

Edited at 2011-08-16 03:23 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: lonelywalker
2011-08-16 03:43 am (UTC)
Genetics: how do they work?!

I thought Michael Cassidy did plausibly look like he could be Michael's brother and Glover's son... but his acting style was just from another show completely.

Maybe Kryptonian genetics work in weird ways?

I'm not entirely convinced Jane Seymour/Glover could produce a Jensen either. Maybe he was grown in a testtube.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 04:18 am (UTC)
I'm not entirely convinced Jane Seymour/Glover could produce a Jensen either. Maybe he was grown in a testtube.
Mmm, I would like to grow a Jensen in a test-tube! I do see a little Glover in his face. There's a scene where he shoves Lionel up against a wall and their profiles almost match.

I thought Michael Cassidy did plausibly look like he could be Michael's brother and Glover's son... but his acting style was just from another show completely.
Which makes me think either he didn't know he was going to be revealed as a Luthor...or was told to act the EXACT opposite of a Luthor to make it a surprise. Poor boy...
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[User Picture]From: dawnybee
2011-08-16 03:47 am (UTC)
I screamed/laughed at Michael Cassidy and I was going to disagree, but upon rumination...I like Cassidy for some reason, but, I agree. Not good in this role. Sometimes I thought he and Michael did bear a slight resemblance to each other, but yeah. Grulian wasn't very effective.

..but to play for realism but it makes him a very odd presence in S2, as though he wandered over from a non-genre show like Gilmore Girls.

You're captured it perfectly. The tone of his performance did not fit.

And because WBD is a good sport, he really goes for it; we get everything but teeth-chattering and "You're a G-G-Ghost!!!"

LOL! I would've loved to see that.

Could RP's Teague and Jane Seymour really conceive a Jensen? Lends credence to the notion that Lionel & Genevieve had a fling & Jason was the result.

Smallville--where almost none of the kids look like their fathers. What is up with the slutty moms in Smallville?

Helen Sl*ter is lovely but it has to be said: hers is a very wan, ladylike Lara. There's tea-drinking and standing around in gowns - the script isn't great but HS doesn't exactly fire things up either. Who did it better? Lynda Carter kicking ass in Progeny...maybe Chloe & Clark should have traded Moms.

I just don't understand what Lara's purpose was. It was definitely a take unlike what I envisioned Lara would be.

Julian S*nds gives...I don't know, a "decorous" performance? But like HS, there's not much juice there and he's hampered by bearing no resemblance to Terence Stamp's Jor-EL and looking exactly like an older version of Oliver. Seriously - Chloe's about to get confused & make out with him here.

It's as if he didn't even bother seeing/hearing what Stamp had done. There was no sense of urgency to his delivery, low wattage all the way. And considering Jor-El bore all the knowledge and memories of both lives, I would think he would be more about business.

But the surprise doesn't work at all because MC acts nothing like a Luthor, more like Jimmy Stewart's midwestern great grandson.

Which is why he loves nothing more than a good steak.

These cassidys are a mixed bunch: Freeman is the best, Patrick C and Michael C? Not so much.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 04:28 am (UTC)
It's as if he didn't even bother seeing/hearing what Stamp had done. There was no sense of urgency to his delivery, low wattage all the way.
Yes, "low wattage" sums it up and Sands can certainly bring the intensity so why did he play it so muted? It makes his death such a non-event.

I like Cassidy for some reason, but, I agree. Not good in this role.
I've liked him in other things - and to be fair, I can't imagine an actor that could have made Grulian work, as written. But a little more slinkiness, a little more hints of menace, might have helped a little. He also looked too young for the role. Might have made a good JL'er - I can see him as Booster (though EM was ace.)

You're captured it perfectly. The tone of his performance did not fit.
Thank you - I like Lana's parental quest plot, until she actually finds him. He's quite detached with her and there's no sense of a familial bond, nor any lingering affection for her mother.

I just don't understand what Lara's purpose was. It was definitely a take unlike what I envisioned Lara would be.
I think they were going for a Clexana-parallel, with the triangle of Els, but really - who wanted to see that? I wanted to see Lara fling her creepy brother-in-law across Metropolis!

These cassidys are a mixed bunch: Freeman is the best, Patrick C and Michael C? Not so much.
Agreed! They should have brought on Katie Cassidy - would have enjoyed her take on Cat, I think!

Edited at 2011-08-16 04:29 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: rosy5000
2011-08-16 03:58 am (UTC)
*giggles* That vid is pure epic genius! I haven't laughed that hard in a while. hee
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-16 04:18 am (UTC)
It starts off like such a sweet lovey-dovey Clex vid, and then your jaw progressively unhinges....
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[User Picture]From: jlvsclrk
2011-08-16 07:32 am (UTC)
Great list! I agree with all your choices. The one I'd add is Alan Ritchson as Aquaman, simply because the man can't act at all, so for me he ruins every scene he's in (and some of the surrounding ones just from the residual stink).
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 04:15 am (UTC)
I have a guilty fondness for Alan because he was so excited to be on....but yeah, every other actor's an Olivier next to him, bless his heart.
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[User Picture]From: cheerful_earl
2011-08-16 08:08 am (UTC)
Michael C*ssidy as Grant/Julian.

YES. For all the reasons you said. I can believe him as a Luthor from pictures, but no. I hated that plotline anyway.

I agree with pretty much all of these (though I did like Plastique in her first appearance). The SV casting department did a really good job for the most part.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 04:14 am (UTC)
Yes, these really are the exceptions. Even when the scripts are silly, they usually find the right actors!

I can believe him as a Luthor from pictures, but no. I hated that plotline anyway.
I was interested when I heard he was coming on - saw the potential for chemistry with MR & TW - but it just didn't materialize.
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[User Picture]From: fruitbat00
2011-08-16 09:18 am (UTC)
Isn't the vid just hysterical. Ran across it on You tube yesterday and fell about laughing...

Totally agree re the casting issues. Lara was so wishy washy as a character, they needed someone with more of a presence, a little steel in her spine. She came across as one of those flappy females in old movies you know the type the damsel in distress ones, nothing about her screamed the great Kryptonian mother of Kal-El.

As for the whole Julian issue, god I hated that story line, so I was never a fan of the character. With Lionel and Lex in the mix they really needed to have a character that stood out and had a presence, some one that had chemistry with Lex and Lois, especially Lex.

I think a major part of the problem was it was badly written and directed. Scenes with Lex and Grant/Julian that should have crackled with emotion and tension fell flat, and ones that should have foreshadowed doom were boring.

And the Grant Lois story line also came across as boring.

I for one didn't really give a damn about the character. Which is a shame because if the Lex Julian angle had been done correctly it could have been an awesome idea full of angst and drama. But this Julian definitely was the weakling of the family. The whole character was a bit of a bore and just added to some of the mindless character destruction of Lex in season 7.

Edited at 2011-08-16 09:21 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 04:13 am (UTC)
Lara was so wishy washy as a character, they needed someone with more of a presence, a little steel in her spine. She came across as one of those flappy females in old movies you know the type the damsel in distress ones, nothing about her screamed the great Kryptonian mother of Kal-El.
Yes, exactly. She was 100% Damsel in Distress when Lara as Avenging Valkyrie, out to protect her son, would have been so much more fun.

With Lionel and Lex in the mix they really needed to have a character that stood out and had a presence, some one that had chemistry with Lex and Lois, especially Lex.
Yeah, it's not a good plotline for any of them. It muddies Lois's entrance to the Planet; Lionel looks bonkers for instantly bonding with Julian (horrible dialogue there) and since none of these scenes are shot from Lex's POV, MR can't redeem the awfulness of the plot twist.

But this Julian definitely was the weakling of the family. The whole character was a bit of a bore and just added to some of the mindless character destruction of Lex in season 7.
There were so many better ideas they could have used for Lex in S7...another deal with Brainiac, closing in on the final knowledge of Clark's secret
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 04:08 am (UTC)
The vid is a wonderful surprise!

I agree with all of your choices for SV miscasts, especially Clark's Kryptonian parents and like jeannev, I'd also add Callum Blue as Zod to the list (imposing presence he ain't).
Almost wished they'd saved Chris Heyerdahl for Zod - he'd have been believably terrifying. CB is just too darn affable for a supervillain.

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[User Picture]From: frelling_tralk
2011-08-16 05:17 pm (UTC)
I'll bet dollars to donuts, MC wasn't told where his plotline was going

:nods: At the beginning of season 7 he was talking about Grant deleting the info on Lex because of wanting to protect Lois from going after the Luthor storyline, and openly saying he wasn't sure where it was all going himself. I wonder if the Julian twist was just thown in there at the last minute, or if the writers always intended for that reveal?

He definitely doesn't come across as a Luthor to me at all, I'm not quite sure how to describe it but he just came across as a little too shouty to me. He fit perfectly as a young hotshot editor of the newsroom, but in the mansion playing pool and sipping brandy with Lex he just stood out like a sore thumb.

And I agree with the comments above on Zod. But then I think the role was also written poorly. After the show spend seven seasons following Lex's downfall, and then season 8 with Davis (although obviously not everyone connected to that character), I think it was a mistake to then have the big villian of the season be so one-dimensional and snarling. I mean he was given reason for what he did, but he never really came across as someone with natural charisma who would have drawn the kryptonians to him, or had real chemistry with Clark. And I think that if you're going with an all-out bad guy, that's what you need to keep them still interesting and perhaps trying to seduce characters over to their POV almost (as SV did a lot better in seasons 2 and 3 with Lionel). It was hard to understand why Clark would ever want to give Zod a chance, and the grating and subtle performance (sorry, but I couldn't stand the way he got words out!) didn't really help with that
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 04:06 am (UTC)
He definitely doesn't come across as a Luthor to me at all, I'm not quite sure how to describe it but he just came across as a little too shouty to me. He fit perfectly as a young hotshot editor of the newsroom, but in the mansion playing pool and sipping brandy with Lex he just stood out like a sore thumb.
Yes, you're right - the body language and demeanor is all wrong, whereas Cassidy, Paul Wesley, the young Lexes, all managed to capture the Luthor elan quite well.

I mean he was given reason for what he did, but he never really came across as someone with natural charisma who would have drawn the kryptonians to him, or had real chemistry with Clark.
To me, he seemed like too much one of the lads - CB's likability shining through too hard. And no sparks with Tom, despite recycling a few Clex moments for Clod (yet offscreen they got on & Tom teased him quite a bit!)

I wonder if the Julian twist was just thown in there at the last minute, or if the writers always intended for that reveal?
It really felt like a last minute twist, because there's little build-up to it and no follow-through (ED wished Lois had at least acknowledged Grant's death but the show just hustles right along.) Would like to know what was originally planned for him...he was clearly coded as a suspicious character from his intro.



Edited at 2011-08-17 04:06 am (UTC)
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[User Picture]From: complicat
2011-08-16 07:58 pm (UTC)
Could RP's Teague and Jane Seymour really conceive a Jensen?
A good point! Also not sure how two blondes managed to produce Clark and yeah, even apart from that they both seemed miscast. I remember thinking that Julian S made the flashback ep worth watching, but only if I forgot that he was actually Jor El and imagined he was some other Kryptonian.

And I agree that the whole Grulian thing was pretty disastrous and probably partly because MC wasn't told where it was all heading until it actually got there so he had to make the best of what little he was given. He was completely un-Luthor-like and it didn't help that they made him lool like a 14-year old playing dress up in his dad's suit!

Also agree with the Zod comments - he was just sort of there and saying words and doing stuff - and then totally unmemorable as soon as he was off screen.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 03:59 am (UTC)
It took the genius of Justin's direction to make Zod fun: "Here, spread your legs and wear this snake and I'll zoom the camera right into your crotch!"

He was completely un-Luthor-like and it didn't help that they made him lool like a 14-year old playing dress up in his dad's suit!
Yes, apart from everything else he seemed far too young for the role. Would love to know if MC was blindsided by the Luthor revelation right before shooting, but he remains tactfully quiet.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-17 03:56 am (UTC)
Yes, that was a very poor use of Mxy. I rather wish he'd been the S8 villain instead of Doomsday, give him his full due.
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[User Picture]From: la_belle_isa
2011-08-21 02:08 pm (UTC)
Great post! Isn't it sad that Clark's Kryptonian parents were BOTH miscast? I guess it was what they call "stunt casting". Which means that maybe the usually extremely talented casting directors had to step aside while the show runners got HELEN SLATER! and JULIAN SANDS! I'm just speculating. It was very obvious back in S7 that Helen Slater was cast for Kara and not for Clark.
I guess I understand being blinded by stunt casting since Robert Picardo was for me "The holographic doctor from Voyager!!" so I loved his role without any other consideration.
I would add Tam*ra Feldman to the list: Kyla in Skinwalker. She totally looked the part but her line delivery was beyond painful to me. The showrunners said that they intended to make Kyla Clark's love interest for S2, but they changed their mind because they thought Tom and Tamara had no chemistry. I think they had more then enough chemistry; so I wonder if they also found her to be not-so-great in the role.
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[User Picture]From: tasabian
2011-08-22 12:15 am (UTC)
The showrunners said that they intended to make Kyla Clark's love interest for S2, but they changed their mind because they thought Tom and Tamara had no chemistry. I think they had more then enough chemistry; so I wonder if they also found her to be not-so-great in the role.
I didn't know that - how interesting. Kyla was certainly beautiful but acting-wise, kinda out of her league for the role.

Isn't it sad that Clark's Kryptonian parents were BOTH miscast? I guess it was what they call "stunt casting". Which means that maybe the usually extremely talented casting directors had to step aside while the show runners got HELEN SLATER! and JULIAN SANDS!
Exactly! If they'd thought ahead a little, Sarah Douglas (Ursa in Supes 2) would have made an awesome Clark-Mom. And she really wanted to be on the show too! Slater should have played Kara's Mom instead.
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