Smallville was ahead of its time.
A superhero show that charted the origin of the most iconic hero in all of pop culture... Superman. Over its ten-season run, Smallville created a brilliantly crafted story that explored Kryptonian history, Superman's tremendous rogues gallery and the average life of the teenage superhero.
With any teenage superhero comes a love interest. Enter Lana Lang. Lana was the female lead of the first few seasons of the show, and while she often existed to be the "Damsel in Distress" archetype, Lana eventually evolved into a strong hero of her own.
The character's run on the show wasn't loved by all fans. Some believed that her constantly changing male love interests diminished her character, which is true to some extent. But when the show entered its later seasons, Lana eventually ditched all the relationship nonsense and managed to stand on her own.
While Clark eventually ended up with Lois Lane, Lana was a huge influence on the Man of Steel. His time in Smallville shaped him to become the world's saviour and Miss Lang played a huge part in this development.