Superman on Television

Smallville: Episode Reviews

Episode 9: "Rogue"

Reviewed by: Neal Bailey

Go to hell, Luthor.

That's pretty cold. You'd think that one villain would want to help another, but then, that's the nature of villainy, right? Self defeating. Even with the best of intentions. That's the moral behind Rogue.

Clark learns it. He almost kills the man trying to make him do his bidding, even if for seemingly semi-noble reasons. He has good intentions, but villainy creeps in, makes him question himself.

This episode illustrates that the show is indeed taking a new direction, and in my opinion, a better one. The producers in interviews have admitted that the formulaic teenager with a kryptonite superpower wasn't working, and they're attempting to fix that by making more original and relevant storylines. Further, they're alleviating my only other complaint with regard to the series... Clark, in a small town, is doing miraculous things, and nobody is noticing except Lex Luthor, Super Genius.

Lana taking over the paper allowed us to see Chloe's weak side. And every person who is strong on the outside has one. This just illustrates her character a little more. Not that she's been lacking, but this is an important and worthwhile development.

The bus crash, both I and my friends who watch it with me believe, is one of the better special effects shots we've seen on television. The only things we could think of comparable were some Babylon 5 shots, and some of the Dominion War scenes at the end of Deep Space Nine. Perhaps Voyager's finale. But that's it. I could be missing something, though. Don't hold me to that.

Lex's attitude with the bomb was questionable, until a friend pointed out something... sure, the police just stand around while Lex Luthor opens the bomb. But they're not allowing him to do it because they're afraid of the bomb, or the person holding it doing something wrong. They're staying back because they know this is Lex, and they know not to give him trouble. We liked that.

The little ironies that continue are great. Superman shields all around... on the armor, on the police badges. Superman learning about Metropolis police. Etc.

One thing bugged me... unresolved issues with the guest star girl and Luthor. They plan on taking over two powerful companies... but did they? Tune in next time, I guess. Check my next review. I imagine this is the beginning of those arcs that were mentioned that will go across several episodes.

My favorite part: Chloe cranking at Lana about the resume thing. It seemed bitter and unwarranted, but think about it: Lana, because she's a cheerleader, because she's a popular girl, went to the principal and got what she wanted. Chloe tried the same thing, and failed.

It stands to the developing Lana character, however, that she manages to turn her own assumptions around. Good job, there.

I give this episode 5 of 5.

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