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Entertainment Jordan Elsass’ Jonathan Was Superman & Lois' Emotional Center

17:22  18 august  2022
17:22  18 august  2022 Source:   cbr.com

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The revelation that Jordan Elsass has chosen not to return for the third season of Superman & Lois has left many fans of the CW series shocked and disappointed. For two seasons, his on-camera ease and naturalistic subtlety as Jonathan Kent provided a welcome foil to Alex Garfin’s more overtly angst-ridden Jordan Kent. This push and pull between the Kent twins went a long way in establishing who they were as a duo and as individuals.

The creators of Superman & Lois will be recasting the role of Jonathan in light of Elsass’ departure, so the character won’t be going anywhere. Yet whoever steps into the role will have some big shoes to fill. Elsass consistently provided Jonathan -- in many ways, the least flashy member of the Lane-Kent family -- with a grounded humanity that made him the emotional core of Superman & Lois over its first 30 episodes.

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Over the course of Superman & Lois’s initial installments, Jonathan went from confident, gifted athlete to someone who felt unremarkable within his extraordinary family. This feeling came to a head in Season 1, Episode 8, “Holding the Wrench.” When an attempt to be more useful nearly resulted in Jonathan’s violent death, Lois Lane became apoplectic and called him and his actions stupid. The subsequent reconciliation between the two characters was an emotionally powerful scene that showcased Elsass’ impressive acting range. In a relatively short span of time, he was able to convincingly and movingly portray Jonathan's hurt at his mother’s anger, his understanding of why she was angry and a sense of relief when the two bonded over being non-powered in a superpowered family.

'Superman & Lois' to recast Jonathan Kent after Jordan Elsass exit

  'Superman & Lois' to recast Jonathan Kent after Jordan Elsass exit Jordan Elsass will not return as Jonathan Kent in Season 3 of The CW series "Superman & Lois."Variety reported Tuesday that Elsass, 20, will not return for Season 3 of The CW series.

Elsass again showed his facility with complex emotions just four episodes later in Season 1, Episode 12, “Through the Valley of Death.” During that episode, Tal-Rho captured Superman and was attempting to replace the Man of Steel’s consciousness with that of General Zod. Not wanting to become a tool of destruction, Superman asked John Henry Irons to kill him should the brainwashing take hold. Multiple people, including Lois and John Diggle, pleaded with John Henry to find a way to save Superman instead. However, it is eventually Jonathan who convinced him. In that scene, Elsass kept his performance small yet engaging. He didn’t scream or sob. He simply stated, calmly with just the slightest break in his voice, that Superman was “a really good dad, too.”

The clear depth of love Jonathan showed for his father in the exchange with John Henry enabled Elsass to further devastate viewers in Season 2, Episode 7, “Anti-Hero.” After being caught with a bag full of X-Kryptonite inhalers and admitting to having used some to enhance his football performance, Jonathan faced possible expulsion from school and a future as a social pariah. However, it was the disappointment of his parents that hurt him the most. Again, Elsass went for understatement throughout his scenes with both Bitsie Tulloch and Tyler Hoechlin. When Lois pushed Jonathan to reveal who he was covering for, he quietly refused. When Clark expressed anger that his son would both use drugs and take the fall for a drug dealer, Jonathan reacted with stoic resignation. It was only after Clark left the room that Jonathan gave into his emotions and finally began to weep.

Jordan Elsass Explains Why He’s Leaving ‘Superman & Lois’

  Jordan Elsass Explains Why He’s Leaving ‘Superman & Lois’ Elsass opens up about his health struggle and shares he may not be acting for a while.“It’s been a tough few weeks, as you might imagine, everything going on with the show. … It’s sad, it’s a real shame. I know that I was pumped for Season 3, for sure, but what are you going to do? Mental health is definitely 100 percent priority, there’s no question,” Elsass said in the video (across two tweets), which you can watch below. “It is pinnacle. It’s got to take precedence. And mine has been, the last couple of years … it’s been rough. I need some time to myself. I’m still debating whether or not I’m even going to act for a while. I may go in a different direction.

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Elsass has an impressive ability to convey emotion believably, particularly for someone so young. He knows when to hold things back and when to let things go. Even portraying the more over the top Jon-El from Bizarro World in Season 2, he was able to ground the character’s choices in a compelling humanity. Jon-El's decision to join Ally Allston and turn against his family made sense in the context of the alienation and resentment his dysfunctional family dynamic fostered. In the hands of a less gifted actor, such a turn might not have been so sympathetic.

As yet, neither the producers of Superman & Lois nor Jordan Elsass have disclosed the exact nature of the “personal reasons” that led to the actor’s departure. Hopefully, they are not so serious that they prevent him from finding further work as an actor; for such a promising talent to stop so soon would be a real shame. The next actor to play Jonathan Kent will, no doubt, also be talented. However, they will have to provide Superman & Lois with similar emotional depth in the upcoming Season 3.

Superman & Lois returns in 2023 on The CW.

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