For 10 seasons of television, Smallville brought to life some of DC’s finest heroes. Each one, in ways both large and small, aid Clark Kent in his journey to becoming the Man of Steel. Additionally, they often prove instrumental in saving the world. Of course, Clark Kent’s allies vary with regards to what they bring to the table. For instance, a few are metahuman with abilities born from the most creative of science fiction, while several others are not human at all. Regardless of the origins of their abilities, though, every hero is a powerhouse in their own right. Logically, this results in some superpowered characters being noticeably more formidable than their counterparts. Since Smallville follows Clark as he begins developing his powers, his fellow heroes are known to give him a run for his money on occasion.
The following list ranks 20 of the heroes featured throughout Smallville’s 10 seasons from weakest to strongest. Because characters with superpowers are exclusively under consideration, those such as Green Arrow and Black Canary do not appear. For some of the list entires, especially those involving the Legion of Super-Heroes, the placement of a character proves difficult. How should Lightning Lad’s electrokinesis be measured against Stargirl’s use of the Cosmic Staff? In cases likes these, what’s important is how the show depicts their powers. Only what appears on-screen is taken into consideration. Therefore, some Justice Society of America characters, most of which are retired, are solely judged based on how their powers are wielded when offering help to Clark Kent.
20 STAR-SPANGLED KID
By the time audiences meet Sylvester Pemberton, aka Star-Spangled Kid, in Smallville’s ninth season, the character’s a retired Justice Society member. He isn’t a metahuman and does not possess any superpowers of his own. However, thanks to the power of the Cosmic Control Staff, Pemberton can manipulate light. Elite combat skills also made him a good asset to the JSA.
Unfortunately, Star-Spangled Kid’s time on Smallville is cut short. Soon after his debut, he falls in-action. Courtney Whitemore/Stargirl later inherits the Cosmic Staff. In her hands, the Staff seemingly offers the wielder even more power, hence the Star-Spangled Kid’s low placement on the list.
Wesley Dodds is another Justice Society of America retiree who debuts late in the show’s lengthy run. His prophetic dreams are his sole special ability, yet he’s still quite the powerful being. Compared to other heroes on Smallville, though, Sandman is simply not powerful enough to land any higher on this particular list.
In the comics, Sandman has other skills, such as being a master of science and using certain gadgets to his benefit. Perhaps these qualities to the character translate into the Smallville universe, but are never depicted on-screen. Sandman may have been incredibly formidable during his time in the Justice Society of America.
18 COSMIC BOY
Along with the rest of the Legion of Super-Heroes, Cosmic Boy debuts on Smallville during the show’s eighth season. Their primary goal in traveling from the 31st Century is to help Clark defeat Braniac. Cosmic Boy is an integral part of the Legion, despite his abilities being comparatively limited.
Thanks to the Legion Ring that all Legionnaires wear, Cosmic Boy has the power of flight. His own superpower, magnetokinesis, gives him the ability to manipulate metal objects with his mind. It may not sound like a gift worth touting; however, Cosmic Boy has been known to pull the team out of bind or two. For instance, he’s essential to removing Braniac’s nanites from Chloe Sullivan to save her life.
17 LIGHTNING LAD
As a member of the Legion of Super-Heroes, Lightning Lad is one of Clark Kent’s most notable allies. Similar to his fellow Legionnaires, Lightning Lad dons a Legion Ring that allows him to fly. Admittedly, though, this hero’s powers are not really anything to write home about.
With merely a thought, Lightning Lad can manipulate electricity with electrokinesis. Not only that, the young hero is also able to generate electricity. He’s typically seen firing energy blasts at enemies, but Lightning Lad puts his powers to use in other, more significant ways, as well. For instance, he aids Cosmic Boy in extracting Braniac’s nanites from Chloe Sullivan’s body.
Because her stepfather was once sidekick to the Star-Spangled Kid, Courtney Whitmore is given unprecedented access to the remaining Justice Society of America Members. After meeting some of the crew, the former Star-Spangled Kid takes her under his wing. They train together for a while, resulting in her eventually becoming a superhero. When he falls in-action, she steals his Cosmic Staff from police lockup and uses it to fight crime.
The Cosmic Staff, just as it does with Star-Spangled Kid, allows Stargirl to manipulate energy, which the Staff projects. In one instance, she uses it for teleportation purposes. Since Stargirl only appears a few times across the series, the Cosmic Staff could be even more powerful with audiences knowing.
15 WONDER TWINS
Known collectively as the Wonder Twins, the sibling duo of Zan and Jayna are interesting because of their shared and individual powers. A telepathic link allows them to mentally communicate with one another. This power doesn’t begin and end with the sharing of information, though. They can sense each other’s emotions, too. Another aspect of their collective abilities involves shapeshifting. But it is somewhat limited, as they must be touching in order to shapeshift.
Individually, their shapeshifting powers manifest quite differently. Zan can transform his body to adopt the properties of elements. For instance, he can mimic the form of fog. Meanwhile, Jayna’s shapeshifting abilities allow her to take the form of animals.
Victor Stone/Cyborg first appears on Smallville in the back half of season 5, initially debuting as one of Lex Luthor’s lab rats. Of course, with Clark Kent’s help, Cyborg eventually becomes quite the superhero. The young man’s heroics inevitably land him a spot as a proud member of the Justice League.
Because he’s equipped with cybernetics, Cyborg’s powers are entirely technology-based. He can hack his way through nearly any computer system. Additionally, Cyborg can project energy blasts from his hands. The cybernetics also provides the hero with super-strength and enhanced durability. Inevitably, due to the nature of his being, Cyborg has a weakness in that his mechanical parts are subject to hacking from outside forces.
13 BLUE BEETLE
Unfortunately, Jaime Reyes’ Blue Beetle makes but a sole appearance on Smallville. The character debuts during the show’s tenth run in an episode titled, “Booster", where while being saved by Booster Gold from a horrific accident, Jaime incidentally has a run in with the blue scarab. The alien creature bonds to him and by episode’s end, Jaime Reyes becomes Blue Beetle.
Because of the scarab, Jaime Reyes obtains several special abilities. He has the power of flight, enhanced strength and speed, and can project beams of energy from his hands. It’s an impressive skillset, no doubt. However, against the other heroes on this list, Blue Beetle isn’t comparably as powerful.
12 SATURN GIRL
Saturn Girl is one of the three Legion of Super-Heroes members, alongside Cosmic Boy and Lightning Lad, who travels from the 31st Century to help Clark Kent thwart a threat by Braniac. Similar to her fellow Legionnaires, the Legion Ring she dons allows her to fly. Beyond this, Satrun Girl only has one other superpower -- telepathy.
With telepathy, Saturn Girl reads minds and communicates with others. This power even extends to Kryptonians, as she telepathically communicates with the likes of Clark Kent. Her psionic abilities also allow her to act as a tether, connecting the minds of two people. Interestingly, Saturn Girl weaponizes her psionic powers, too. One instance involves her overwhelming the mind of an enemy in an effort to slow them down.
Hawkman makes several appearances during Smallville’s final two seasons, in which he debuts as a retired Justice Society of America member. He retakes his mantle to help Clark defeat the second Icicle, the son of a villain that took Hawkman’s wife, Shayera/Hawkgirl away from him for good.
Because of a curse, Hawkman is doomed to repeatedly reincarnate. He also bears actionable powers that benefit him in combat situations. Flight, enhanced speed, super-strength, and increased durability all assist Hawkman in his heroic ventures. However, other heroes in Smallville canon have similar abilities that are inarguably superior. For instance, Hawkman couldn’t outrun Clark, let alone a Speedster like Bart Allen’s Impulse.
10 BOOSTER GOLD
If you let Booster Gold tell it, he’s the best at pretty much everything. While that may hold true to some degree, his power has limits. Though he only appears in Season 10’s aptly titled “Booster” episode, the 25th Century hero makes quite the impression.
Each power that Booster wields is thanks to stolen items. The futuristic suit he dons gives him enhanced strength and speed, the ability to generate forcefields, and energy projection. A Legion Ring provides him flight ability and, additionally, it’s the device that allows him to travel through time. Skeets, another stolen item, is a headset that acts as Booster’s personal artificial intelligence device, feeding him information and advice when necessary. Without his pilfered gear, Booster Gold isn’t so super or much of a hero.
By virtue of her being Atalantean, Mera is, of course, far more powerful than the average person. She only features on the show once, during Season 10, therefore the full breadth of her abilities isn’t explored. Yet, Mera does knock Clark Kent around upon their first meeting, confusing his attempt to meet with Arthur Curry/Aquaman as a threat.
As far as abilities are concerned, she has quite a few. Of course, hydrokinesis constitutes the most notable of Mera’s powers, allowing her to control water. With water at her disposal, Mera has enhanced speed, durability, and strength. Exposure to water also heals any wounds she sustain on the surface. Obviously, she and Aquaman bear some similarities, however, he harbors a few powers his wife lacks.
Speedsters are some of the DC Universe’s most powerful characters, thus, whenever he appears, Bart Allen’s Impulse acts as a boon to Clark Kent’s fight against evildoers. He, unfortunately, doesn’t feature on the show too often, though, appearing in only a handful of episodes. Regardless, Clark considers him a trusted ally.
Since Impulse is a speedster, that his top speed greatly surpasses that of a Kryptonian serves as no surprise. Like other Speedsters in the comics, Smallville’s Impulse can push himself to travel faster than the speed of light. Because of how fast he moves, he’s even said to be capable of passing through solid objects. Due to his infrequent and minimal appearances across the series, the extent of his powers remains relatively unknown.
Arthur Curry’s debut in Smallville’s fifth run sees him saving Lois Lane from drowning in a lake. Saving folks from water-based accidents is not Aquaman’s sole skill, either. Like Mera, being an Atlantean helps him achieve feats above and beyond what the average human can accomplish.
That hydrokinesis allows him to control water is one of his more well known abilities. The King of Atlantis also has enhanced speed, durability, and strength. Jumping to great heights and across far distances is another of Aquaman’s skills, as is his healing ability. Yet, it’s his power to telepathically communicate with sea creatures that sets him apart from the rest of his Atlantean brethren.
Smallville’s Conner Kent/Superboy is half-human and half-Kryptonian, cloned from the DNA of both Clark Kent and Lex Luthor. He only appears in a couple of episodes during the show’s 10th season, therefore the full extent of his powers is never revealed. However, the little that does receive attention proves Conner has the same abilities as Clark.
Conner’s one setback, which is a relatively minor one, is that his abilities aren’t as potent as Clark's. In fact, Conner’s power supposedly matches that of Clark as a teenager. For instance, Conner's speed does not equal that of the Man of Steel's. His subdued potency could be due to his age, meaning he may grow stronger as he gets older.
She may be the daughter of the great John Zatara, but Zatanna is a powerful magician in her own right. Zatanna first appears on Smallville during Season 8, then later returns once more for Season 9. Initially, her skills as a sorceress are fairly minimal, yet upon finding her father’s spellbook, Zatanna’s power increases in unimaginable ways. Were she not a magician with good intentions, the scope of her magic would be terrifying.
Teleportation, telekenesis, pyrokenesis, and mind control seemingly scratch the surface of what she can do. Transfiguration is one of Zatanna’s more impressive abilities, allowing her to change the form of objects and even people. Though Clark talks her out of performing such a task, it’s possible that Zatanna can resurrect the dead.
4 DOCTOR FATE
The Kent Nelson version of Doctor Fate appears in Season 9’s “Absolute Justice.” As a former Justice Society of America member, he arrives on the series as an older character. He’s in an emotionally distraught state, too, since the Helmet of Nabu that he once wore drove him to insanity. Nelson reprises his role as Doctor Fate to help his former teammates and the Justice League.
Doctor Fate’s powers manifest in myriad ways, but each ability he has comes from the Helmet of Nabu. The Helmet gives him access to endless magical possibilities -- he can peer into possible futures, teleport, use telekinesis, fly, and much more. One of the more intriguing feats he accomplishes is restoring John Jones’ Martian-related powers.
3 MARTIAN MANHUNTER
Martian Manhunter is one of the most powerful characters in the DC Universe, so it's no surprise that he’s similarly formidable on Smallville. He features frequently in Seasons 6, 7, 8, and 9, where his power levels often fluctuate. For a time, Martian Manhunter actually loses his abilities after saving Clark Kent, but they're later returned. However, it can still be argued that Superman’s the more powerful of the two.
John Jones’ Martian physiology has many of the abilities afforded to Clark -- heat vision, super-strength, super-speed, and invulnerability are the notable ones. Of course, the Martian is also telepathic and a shapeshifter. Despite these dominant abilities, the show works to ensure that Martian Manhunter can’t one-up the Man of Steel.
Supergirl versus Superman usually ends in a toss up -- in the comics, she’s technically the more powerful of the two Kryptonians. However, on Smallville, the Man of Steel seemingly edges out the win. Of course, Kara Zor-El is not weak by any means. She has the same powers her cousin does: super-strength, heat vision, x-ray vision, super-speed, invulnerability, the list goes on and on. Yet, the show does emphasize the fact that, at least initially, Supergirl has trouble controlling a few of her powers.
Because she doesn’t appear often enough after being a key character in Season 7, it’s difficult to discern the full extent of what she can and cannot do. One thing appears pretty clear, though: Superman’s power level surpasses hers.
There is no greater power on Earth than that which rests within Superman, and the Smallville iteration of the character faithfully keeps in line with this sentiment. However, as previously noted, both Supergirl and Martian Manhunter don't fall too far behind him. Throughout the 10-season series, he takes on the world’s greatest threats. Such dangers range from petty criminals and overpowered metahumans to diabolical masterminds and fierce otherworldly creatures.
Regardless of the trouble at hand, Clark Kent always comes out on top thanks to his myriad abilities. Speed, strength, heat vision, invulnerability, freeze breath, flight, and microvision are just a few of his better known powers. Each one aids him in the never ending fight to preserve humanity.