Character Profiles - The Mothers
ELLA LANE: Sister to Moira Sullivan, wife of General Sam Lane, and mother of Lois and Lucy Lane, Ella was dearly missed when she passed away as a result of the lung cancer she developed from smoking cigarettes since high school. Little touches like a glass blue bird that symbolized hope and big stands like demanding her husband appreciate the simple things in life were how Ella brought a sense of hope and home to her family while she lived. She was also stoic—a mask of strength hiding her inner turmoil—when her husband’s deployments and assignments meant saying too many sad goodbyes, and when her terminal illness meant saying her own to the husband and daughters she loved. Devoted and graceful, Ella was a light that went out too soon.
LARA EL: Brave and compassionate, according to her husband Jor-El, Lara was a kind and loving aunt to her neice Kara and an invaluable partner to her husband as he struggled to use his scientific gifts to save his planet. When his efforts weren’t enough, and Krypton neared destruction, she never stopped believing in him and having hope for the future. Her son, Kal-El, became that hope. Not only was he a miracle to a couple who thought the couldn’t have children, he also became Lara’s hope that Krypton could live on in him, and, through him, save another civilization (Earth) from suffering the same fate. Selfless and loyal, Lara’s last thoughts weren’t of herself, but her son, worrying if he’d be loved and experience all that life has to offer, and when her brother-in-law threatened her to win her allegiance, she stayed true to her husband and fought for the life of her son and his adopted planet. Such faithfulness and fearlessness make Lara a noble woman in every sense.
MOIRA SULLIVAN: Much like her sister, Ella, Moira is a devoted mother who was forced to leave her daughter too soon. Moira encouraged her daughter, Chloe, to believe in herself and she was proud of her daughter’s accomplishments. The phenomenon of mutations from meteor rocks granting those infected with extraordinary and potentially dangerous powers became the focus Chloe’s articles and it was what forced Moira to make the ultimate sacrifice which would separate from her husband and daughter forever. For years she retreated into a catatonic state in a mental institution, and only gained lucidity long enough to fight back against Lex Luthor’s experiments on meteor infected individuals and tell her daughter she loved her and was proud of her. She couldn’t fight her biology, but she could choose how she coped with it, and she did so with strength and dignity.
NELL POTTER: Nell Potter (Aunt Nell) raised Lana as her own daughter after Lana’s parents died tragically in the 1989 meteor shower. We know scarce details about Nell: she loved her niece, she had a bit of a past with Jonathan Kent, she owned land and a flower shop in Smallville, she had rather refined tastes, and she wanted the best for Lana and had high expectations for her. On the surface, Nell might appear to be a cold figure. Still, she took on the responsibility of raising her sister’s daughter with grace. One of Lana’s treasured memories of her aunt was when she told her “She didn’t love me any less because I was adopted. She worried about me more.” The unintended consequence of that worry was Nell’s desire to create an image of her sister, Laura, she thought would most inspire Lana. The image of a happy, perfect, cheerleader who was devoted to Lana’s father was false, but certainly not malicious. In the end, Nell’s heart was in the right place. Nell often seemed trapped in Smallville. Fortunately, she was ultimately able to escape her claustrophobic small town life. Nell is therefore a beautiful yet flawed example of love, sacrifice, and patience.
CAT GRANT: Despite her sugary sweet demeanor, Cat Grant’s life was not without its bitter disappointments. Idealistic and driven in high school, Cat fell for who she thought was her Prince Charming and studied hard to become valedictorian. She may have lost her ability to buy into fantasy without question when her high school sweetheart, and father of her son, became so abusive she had to escape, but she never lost her faith in the power of the press. As a reporter for The Daily Planet, Cat worked to make sure the heroes who hid in the shadows couldn’t fool the public into believing in them as she had been fooled to believe in happily ever after. Cat felt a responsibility to the public, but she also felt a responsibility to her son, Adam. She not only doted on him with chicken soup for colds and bedtime stories about a boy who retained his innocence by never growing up, she also adopted a fake name to protect him. Under her new name, Cat struggled to differentiate between appearance and reality and to define herself; yet she ultimately was able to find her way and find her place.
FAORA: Faora grew up believing a life in the military was her only option. The battlefield became her home and leaders like Zod, who risked and fought bravely for his soldiers and his home, became her heroes. During her first chance at life, Faora’s affection and loyalty to Zod led her to being his right hand as he destroyed Krypton and prepared to have their genetically engineered son, Doomsday, help secure a new home for them on Earth. During her second chance, however, Faora realized she had other options. She could choose peace instead of war. Her sister, Vala, and her unborn child with Zod could live among humans and even become ambassadors for aliens on Earth. Her loyalty to peace, to hope, and to what is right never wavered even in the face of Zod’s threats to her life and the life of her child. She died never forsaking her dreams, and as a result of her graceful leadership and stoic sacrifice, her fellow Kandorians ultimately chose a path the better life she had always hoped for.
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*To read about other mothers featured on the show like Martha Kent and Chloe Sullivan click here.