You what would be great? If Clark wasn't the Traveler. And instead, the Traveler is the Traveler from the Next Generation. Where's Wesley Crusher when you need him? (I'm totally kidding.)
The Veritas secret society idea is kind of neat, except for how it basically rewrites what we know of the Luthors, the Teagues, the Swanns, and the Queens. So now the parents all used to hang out together (did they do this in the old Indian caves that are now destroyed?) Sounds a lot like The Company in Heroes to me. Too much like it.
I liked Trish Swann's talk with Clark at the end: "I wish you'd come with me. No? Well, then I'm staying. I want to be a series regular." But she won't be. Lex saw to that right quick, and kept her bloody locket to boot.
Big changes are afoot for season 8. Tom Welling, Julian Glover, Laura Vandervoort, Erica Durance, and Aaron Ashmore are the only series regulars signed to return. Michael Rosenbaum and Kristin Kreuk are not returning as regulars but will be in a very small number of episodes. Allison Mack is also unsigned and she's the one I'm worried about. I don't know if I want to watch Smallville without Chloe. After all, Chloe is someone who can stroll into the Fortress, yell at Jor El, and get him to power Kara back up. I'd rather a Smallville without Lois and Clark than without Chloe. (I'm not kidding. I love Chloe.)
Also, word is at least half the series's founding "no flights, no tights" policy will likely be over, if not by this season finale then by next season. Kara is here to stay and she obviously changes the game. They can't sustain a concept where Kara can fly but Clark can't, especially when he always could. Evil Clark flew, which we see in the opening credits every week.
If there's one thing I like about this season, besides Kara (when she's not a depowered amnesiac - glad that's over), it's that the series is visibly in transition. The game is changing considerably. More crazy comic book soap opera is afoot. I hope they somehow have the budget to support the flying superpowered heroics of two Kryptonians every week. I also really like that Lionel Luthor is changed/wants to change/can't entirely change but he's charged with being the vessel by which Jor El guards the Kryptonian cousins.
Speaking of whom, I recently read a few dozen issues of Superman/Batman and Supergirl. Superman/Batman has a story arc that brings Kara Zor-El officially into the DCU. You can see where Smallville pulled as much as they could from these new comics to bring Kara into the show (and why not, when ex-Smallville and now Heroes writer Jeph Loeb wrote both books). Right now, Kara Zor-El is my favorite Kryptonian.
I don't think better sequels is a recent phenomenon. There have been a number of sequels better than the original. The Godfather Part II. The Empire Strikes Back. Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. Lethal Weapon 2. Terminator 2. Toy Story 2. Spider-Man 2.