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Desirée Atkins - born Allison Sanders and temporarily known as Desirée Luthor - is a metahuman with the ability to use pheromones to influence the thoughts of men she kisses. She is the first ex-wife of Lex Luthor.

Early Life

Allison Sanders grew up in Smallville. As a teenager, she was popular with the local boys for her questionable reputation. She acquired her power during the 1989 meteor shower, when she was "in the throes of major passion" with her then-boyfriend in a truck by the lake as the meteors hit. A couple of weeks later, the boyfriend murdered her parents (presumably after being seduced by her) and was convicted of a double homicide. Allison then inherited her parents' estate.

Five years later, Allison changed her name to Desirée Atkins and started teaching high school. She seduced and married a shipping magnate, but still continued her career in education. Her husband was murdered by one of her moonstruck students (also seduced into doing so), and she was the sole heir to his fortune. A combination of economic downturns and making poor financial decisions, such as investing in dot-coms that went belly-up, evaporated Allison's ill-gotten fortune.

Season Two

Using her enhanced pheromone, Desirée managed to seduce Lex Luthor during a business function and got him to marry her, continuing her pattern of manipulation. She got a job as a biology teacher at Smallville High School, intending to duplicate her previous successes by having one of her students murder Lex for her. However, she failed to seduce Clark Kent, due to him being Kryptonian rather than human. Finding she could not use Clark and to cast off suspicion, she accused Clark of arson. When Jonathan Kent went to confront her, she used her powers to control Jonathan, who tried to shoot Lex thinking that Lex was hurting Desirée. Clark arrived in time and was able to save Lex by melting Jonathan's bullet mid-flight with his newly developed heat vision. Desirée then set Lex on fire and attempted to escape, but was immobilized with pain when Clark vision-heated the door handle and burned her hand.

As a result of her true nature becoming public, Desirée was arrested for homicide and attempted homicide, and her employment at Smallville High was terminated. It was also safely surmised that the attempt on Lex's life was grounds for annulment of their sham marriage.

Powers and Abilities

Desirée releasing her pheromones.

  • Mind Control: Desirée's gift is rooted in seduction - a combination of her own sexual allure as well as the metahuman potency of her pheromones. This causes an immediate infatuation and susceptibility to her suggestion, to the point of always taking her side and losing all sense of principle. However, she was unable to affect Clark due to his Kryptonian nature (as pheromones don't cross species).


  • Desirée means "desired", likely alluding to her powers.


  • Desirée was the second member of the Smallville High School faculty staff to have metahuman powers. The first was football coach Walt Arnold, from the season 1 episode Hothead. Whereas Walt's powers were representative of wrath, Allison's superpowers were a combination of two of the Seven Deadly Sins; lust and greed.