The Talon is the name of a coffee house in the town of Smallville formerly run by Lana Lang and Lex Luthor. It was originally a movie theater before being converted by Lana. It is one of the central locations for the television series Smallville.
It is the local hang-out of Smallville, located at 220 Main Street, Smallville Kansas, 35409. It is across the street from Fordman's Department Store.
Built by vaudevillian and Smallville native William Talon, the 560 seat Talon Theater raised its curtain on September 9, 1939, with a matinee screening of The Wizard of Oz and would later celebrate its 60th anniversary (though rebuilt in 1955) with a showing of the restored, released version of the family classic in 1999 for the original matinee admission price of 45 cents. Plush couches and upholstered chairs lined the Talon's lobby while its regally draped proscenium stood before royal red velour seats, graceful moldings and splendid wall sconces.
Though primarily a movie house, the theater also hosted the Kansas Philharmonic when the orchestra visited Smallville. Unfortunately the old Talon burned down in the Main Street fire of 1955 that also destroyed Miller's Newsstand and Bea's Candy and Soda Shoppe. Undeterred, William Talon immediately made plans to rebuild and, on November 29, 1955, the Talon reopened its doors to a full house of teenagers eager to see James Dean in Rebel Without a Cause. The new 750-seat movie house was a sleek, modern luxury with its undulating exterior facade and neon sign that, letter-by-letter, spelled out the theater's name repeatedly. Inside, backlit photos of Hollywood's biggest stars adorned the lobby walls and a brilliant glass and chrome popcorn maker lured patrons to the snack stand with its buttery aroma. Gently curved staircases on each side of the theater led to a spacious balcony, a favorite spot for teenagers.
The theater boasted a CinemaScope screen and the projection room was equipped with Simplex XL projectors and magnetic sound system. Having remained family-owned and operated until 2000, the Talon saw its patronage fall over the years due to the proliferation of large-chain multiplex theaters, and on February 26, 2000, the Talon Theater dimmed its lights for the last time.
The Talon as a coffee shop
In 2000, entrepreneur Nell Potter acquired the Talon Theater. Unable to find a new tenant to revive the old movie house, Potter sold the property in 2002 to local businessman Lex Luthor who planned to raze it and build a parking structure for the downtown area. With the future of the old theater in danger, Smallville High student Lana Lang (Nell Potter's niece) lobbied Luthor to recognize the benefits of historical preservation. Impressed with Lang's conviction and her ideas for the treasured landmark, Luthor scrapped his plans. With Nell as manager, Lana as assistant manager, and Lex as a silent partner, the Talon replaced The Beanery as the most popular after-school hangout.
After Nell moved to Metropolis, Lana actively managed the Talon while in high school. In Spring of 2004, Lana decided to move to Paris, France, to study art and approached Lex about selling her shares. However, just before her departure, she learned that Lex intended to sell the Talon and turn it into a more lucrative business. She initially asked him to keep it the way it was, but then decided that she no longer cared about the future of the Talon and left town. The coffeeshop was closed down all summer, but Lex never sold or renovated it. By the fall of 2004, Martha Kent approached Lex. He agreed to let her manage it and the Talon was reopened. Lois Lane worked there as a waitress. Martha ran the Talon until the her husband Jonathan died suddenly. Martha quit when she decided to take her husband's seat in the Senate.
Today, the Talon is the hippest coffeehouse and gathering place in Smallville. It features an Egyptian design motif and offers a full-service espresso bar and pastries. It has wireless Internet access, occasional live music, and karaoke. The theater is also still functioning, and shows classic movies.
In 2004, Lana met Adam Knight in physical therapy, and when he expressed that he had nowhere to live, she renovated the apartment above the Talon. Adam lived there until Lana discovered he was spying on her, and tried to have him evicted. She enlisted Lex Luthor's help, but before the two could act, he was taken away by Lionel Luthor and Dr. Lia Teng.
After Lana left to attend school in Paris, Lex decided to close down the Talon. However, Lana abruptly and urgently returned to Smallville three months later, and rented the apartment. When Lana moved into the dorms at Metropolis University, Lois Lane rented the apartment. Although she no longer works as a waitress, she is still the Talon apartment's current tenant. As Jonathan Kent's campaign manager, Lois hosted his election victory party at The Talon in January 2006.
Smallville Talon site at Warnerbros.com (history source)