Superman on Television

Smallville: Episode Reviews

Season 4 - Episode 1: "Crusade"

Reviewed by: Neal Bailey

Main Points:

  • Lana's back. Well, actually, there's a freaky tattoo on it. She's still gone, thankfully.
  • Chloe's alive.
  • Lionel's almost free.
  • Clark's with his family again.
  • Lex is on dialysis.
  • Jonathan's fine. Martha met Lois, and we just saw black K for the first time.


    Okay. It's official. I'll start this year off with a death threat.

    ANY, and I mean ANY of you all who write me now and tell me that Chloe might be Lois? BOOM! You're gonna get EXES for EYES! Get me? Just like in the cartoons! Nyah!


    So by the above you can ascertain that Lois has arrived, and Chloe she ain't. There are multiple responses to this, so we might as well jump right in! The gears are rusty, and there's no way to get them going other than tapping the vein.

    (horrible neck crack sounds from relaxation built up over nearly three months)

    So the title of this episode is Crusade. Do I even need to start in on how bad that is? We have the Christ and Superman allegory, all right, and it works well. You don't even have to be religious to enjoy the comparison between Superman as a godman and Jesus as savior, it's poignant, interesting, and it leads into a lot of cool discussions with Lex's true evil and his nature as the satan of the story or whether he's just a misguided angel.

    But then they go and call a quest for Kryptonian purity a "Crusade". Uh...well, that's a little, I don't know, out there. See, the Crusades, for those of you still in high school and not into religion study, is a big group of Christian folk washing over country after country killing people of other religions because they disagree with Christians, which culminated in the quest for the holy grail (purportedly). Which failed.

    A lot of people died brutally.

    I guess you can look at it like the evil entity Jor-El has become is doing that dirty work per the early Christians. That's a good reasoning.

    But hey, there's still something henky about it. I mean, are they gonna call the episode where Lionel goes to court Inquisition?

    No one expects the Goughish Inquisition! (Ominous music)

    The ways of titling an episode are three.

    (Steve says, ONE, NEAL!)



    All right. That joke is silly. The parking signs don't even look real. And now for something completely fanboy.

    Lois smokes. I'm torn over that, see, because smoking, to me, is a total turnoff. I grew up in a house with two smokers, I was sick all the time, my clothes reeked so much that I couldn't convince the teachers at school that I didn't smoke myself, and I still hack my lungs out sometimes on cold days. To say nothing of coughing up blood as a teenager.

    So smoking and I, we have a history. I can't be attracted to a woman who smokes, even if she's throwing herself at me, and I can't stand the smell, the propaganda.

    The decision to make Lois a smoker goes to several points of character. First, that she has a compulsive, quirky, addictive personality, and to this, the smoking makes sense. Also, she's growing up and becoming sensible, so she's trying to quit, which also goes to character and is a good move. It's also an homage to Margot Kidder and the first Superman movie, where she smoked, and movies forward, where she still smoked.

    I didn't like that. I mean, way to show a smart, sophisticated woman. Instead of making her able to elaborate on the categorical imperative or Hegelian dialectics, let's just stuff a ciggy in her hand, that makes her mature. DUH. So as a nod to the films, I respect the gesture and resent it at the same time, because it was a bad move designed to product place and sell cigarettes to make people look mature.

    But it also immediately tamped down my attraction to Miss Lane, which, while on an intellectual level is irrelevant, one shouldn't judge a woman on her body alone, still stinks, because face it, we do judge women on their body alone in certain frames of reference, particularly attraction.

    At any rate, it sat odd with me, and will continue to until it's dealt with.

    The opening is again, a miraculous job by the team of making something that seemed impossible to pull off to me possible. Making Lois meet Clark without totally giving away the secret. She saw him get hit by lightning, and that's pretty soap opera, but it works. It's plausible, if way out there. And she doesn't see him use his powers, not really, until the end, and that's a leap of logic that I'll get to. And she has a good reason to be in town. I don't know why she'd stay with Clark when it's obvious if she has the regalia she has along with her own vehicle, she can afford a hotel (all kids in Smallville are interminable with their cash flow despite being down-home, it would seem).

    The S in the field was subtle, and beautiful.

    The first "Lois, Lois Lane" was probably one of the best openings to the show thusfar...

    And GREAT moment with the red cape blanket. It's been done, but I don't think I'll ever get tired of it.

    Should Lois appear in Smallville? Well, no, but then, neither should Lex, if you're a strict authoritarian and into Byrne, and Perry shouldn't, and Jimmy shouldn't (you know he's coming). Point being, you can get all hung up on it (and I will continue with regards to Pete not being there) but I'm just going to sit back and enjoy it as its own continuity. Lois appearing makes that the only course remaining to take.

    I mean, if this were being rated as to how it applies to the spirit of the old school Superman, or the Byrne Superman, it would fail. As its own myth, I will have to regard it on its own henceforth, so I'm gonna worry less about continuity, though I will jive it now and then for you guys, because it's funny.

    The opening credits are nicely reshaped, although it did give away a few key scenes of the show, Lana getting zonked, Clark flying, and all that, but all in all I like it. Except for the fact that Erica isn't on the cast list. Lame! I mean, I know she's only around for half the season, but c'mon!

    Not cool, Zeus. (Catch THAT reference, I dare ya!)

    And hey! Maybe there is something to you guys in business with your Indiana Jones homage theory. Lex Luthor, looking a lot like two bad guys in Indiana Jones (the one who takes the Ark from Jones in Raiders and the dude who gets blown up at the beginning of Crusade... wait a minute! CRUSADE again! Hmmmmm... we're being manipulated!), takes an idol from a cave where a bunch of Arab looking dudes are forced to do the digging for him. He even has a plane malfunction, just like in Temple!

    Lex needs a whip. Seriously. Lionel would be like,

    "Mussolini once said-" CRACK!

    "That one's for stealing my 'do!"

    "But Keirkegard thinks that-" CRACK!

    "That one's for the dialysis! I can't pee!"

    "Son!" CRACK!

    "Stop quoting people!"

    "Manson, Roosevelt, Joan of Arc...uh...Maddox!" CRACK! CRACK! CRACK! CRACK!

    Cue the Raiders theme, and cut to the symbolism:

    Lex is wearing white again, for the first time since Hourglass. Does it mean he's trying to be good? I see Clark wearing black, maybe they're going for contrast. Either way, it looks really cool, and it works for both of them.

    Hey! MORE Indiana Jones symbolism on this movie. Both characters walk around with their shirts off.

    Let's translate that statue, shall we? It reads:

    "This is the first crystal of Krypton" (with what appears to be an error W instead of a P, but that seems to be the intent). Special thanks to BJ Vavra for the translation. He stayed up late with me to figure that out.

    What does it mean? Well, obviously, that it's the first of three. Still, neat prop design.

    Did you all see that old lady get freaky looking at naked Clark? That was funny and horrid at the same time, so I laughed while vomiting.

    So we're reintroduced to Lana, and that's all right. I mean, she's still in Paris, right? And she's going to school, which means she's not coming back, right? A guy can hope. But at least she's been gone a full episode, no Clana, that makes up for a lot of last season right there.

    So we see her, and her bold new look is that she wears a dress?

    See, a bold new look for me is like, if I lop off an arm and make it into an earring. I've got a Mohawk, people. THAT is a bold new look (albeit perhaps poseur?). A girl going from pink sweater shirts and jeans to dresses is not a bold new look.

    She does shower on camera more, I guess that says something.

    So she's in France, and she meets up with the guy who is now with her, Jason. And the dialogue is really fantastic. Well written. I mean, it skillfully skirts and explains the past year, and I was actually enjoying some Lana screen time, I mean it.

    And then I watched the rest of the episode and said to myself, "Who is Jason Teague?"

    What has he done so far? Well, he's doted over Lana and he's...that's right! Doted over Lana! So while I am glad that the focus of the show is not Clark doting over Lana, we have now simply transferred that lackluster tension onto another Adam, another doting fetishist obsessed with the vague female character figure who offers nothing but beauty to the show. Well, great. It'll be tolerable if the dialogue remains like this, however, regardless. Well written.

    Where is Lana's Lois? By that, I mean, they brought in Lois because, as Gough says, they wanted a girl who would tell Clark he's not perfect, not everyone likes him. Who's going to tell Lana she's a manipulative tart and bring her back from self-esteem to efficacy? Sigh.

    Back to a scene with Lois, talking to the dazed Clark. She reaches into her purse, explaining, "Nicorette!"


    Now excuse me, I'm going to the fridge for a cool, crisp, refreshing PEPSI!

    Ah! Now THAT's the choice of the Next Generation X that makes the whole world smile while coloring their teeth brown and addicting themselves hopelessly to caffeine! Well, crumb. There goes my free case of Edge.

    So then Lois is pacing about, and she says, "FORTY-FIVE MINUTES!", you know, like waiting forty-five minutes for a doctor is the end of the world. Talk about a way to kill empathy for a character! I mean, I got into this really bad accident last December, I'm sure I told y'all about it, and I was like, carrying my head in my hands with this awestruck expression of catastrophic pain, and I asked for a needle and thread, and they pointed to the waiting room, where I sat in horrible pain for four hours for ten minutes of treatment, only to get charged 800 bucks. They actually charged me 50 bucks an hour to sit in the waiting room. They charged me for how slow they were.

    And ole Clark boy, he's got, what, a busted memory? Forty-five minutes? Wuss! Man, move to the city! Pffffft! In the city that's like three days wait, and then you get a hammer, and the doctor says, "Man, you know you ain't got no HMO! Find a short dude with a red moustache with a big cowboy hat and have him hit you over the head with this until you get your memory back. Or exes for eyes."

    And then they cut to Lex, taking his shirt off, and I realize that it's naked dude night on Smallville and I don't have no dollar bills! I'd include the naked Lana scene, except the bills would get wet.

    I actually feel for Lex. I used to take a guy to dialysis when I was a nurse's assistant (read, minimum wage orderly to get pooped on) and it's just really draining. It's also constant, and horrible, and you can die if you're not careful. Although two hours won't really do what it did to Lex unless it's really severe. Who knows, it might be? But then, how does this change Lex in the future? I wonder about that.

    My next note: D@mn! That's some GOOD flying. My next note: Holy cow, Neal. If this is what they can do on TV, imagine the movie! At this point, gooseflesh broke out on my arms.

    The comment about liking the nerd with glasses type on Lois' part was entertaining, but it's like rubbing in our face our complaint about Clark not getting his glasses yet. Still, worth the comedy.

    My next note wonders if Lois is legal or if she's too young, but Mike Sacal reminded my bad memory in class that Lois is in college, according to Chloe. Apparently she's taking a semester off? I know college starts later than high school, but then, she's supposed to be here 13 episodes!

    Another great it a bird? A plane? Classic!

    Margot Kidder returns!

    Aha, so here comes the part where you sit up in your chairs and say, "Ooh! What's Neal gonna say about Margot!"

    Well, nothing. I'm like Tom Leykis. I will poke fun at just about anything, but even I have my limits. You will never see me poke fun at:

    Christopher Reeve's paralysis.

    Margot Kidder's bi-polar disease.

    Martin Luther King.

    John F. Kennedy.


    Insert common sense phrase here.

    Why? Because one, I don't want to be killed, two, sometimes, for multiple reasons, it's not appropriate, and though there may be joke potential, I just can't do it. So don't ask about it. It's like the 1961 debacle, you might remember that. Dead dead dead, and I shan't address it.

    Margot played her part in this episode rather clunky, and I think a lot of it stemmed from the fact that she couldn't get the character, as she said herself in a recent interview. "Too mysterious" she said. It was also a bit unsettling to me to see how Annette and Lois compare, in terms of aging, because both were REALLY attractive back in the day, to most people's taste. Aging has been really hard on Margot, whereas Annette is still hot hot hot! Maybe I'm biased, but it just really stuck out to me. No offense, Margot. You're still Lois to me. I I'm gonna stop right now before I get in trouble, but to be honest, I felt kind of bad, you know, that melancholy when you realize that people get old? People who are special to you?

    I love Annette. That's it. I love her so much when she was making out with Jonathan I was like, "Maybe I should apply for the stunt kisser position." You know? Like I'm attracted to Chloe but not Lana? It's not Margot's fault, it just is what it is. And Lana held up better. Now why? I don't know. It's just a note, something I saw, and it took me out of the story and made me think. Sorry if it sounds rude, that's not how it's intended.

    Still, GREAT homage, and good use of the character. Especially the dialogue. The writing was top notch even if the performance was a little off. I love the line about how in another time and place she and Swann were in love. It's just such a great nod. And it doesn't matter how she looks, just bringing Margot on the show is a fantastic coup, and I hope they bring her on again, because even if she doesn't get her character, I flat out just don't care. I'm so glad to see Lois on film again, in any capacity.

    The symbol means Crusade, which I commented on earlier...I want to know why. I hope they'll elaborate. Can't blame them for not doing so yet, though.

    Black Kryptonite. It's like a black lightsaber, I always wondered about it, and supposed they'd never do it. But they have. My theory is that it's Gus Gorman's Kryptonite, twenty years later. Basically, the tar has turned it black. That's the only explanation I can come up with, because when Clark is exposed to it, he splits into two beings, one good, one bad, just like in Superman III. Now why they couldn't have a nice long fight is beyond me, but well, heck, let's just face it. It was a wasted prop! Why bring it in if you're not going to assign its specific property? I hope they explain why it split Clark in two and fixed him. If not, that'll be a really lame end to a good major plot.

    It's also funny that Clark just conveniently decides to be reborn three months later. Why?

    "You're my son."

    "God help me."

    The dialogue continues to shine in this episode.

    So Clark undoes the Kryptonian padlock in the cave (hey, wonder if it's a KRYPTONITE LOCK! Bwa ha. Sorry. Had to poke fun at the guys who co-lost their lawsuit with DC, even though I have a Kryptonite lock, myself. PRODUCT PLACEMENT!) and goes in, and look! It's a Superman shield Triforce! I expected him to pop it in and have the Zelda theme come on. You know?

    Cut to Jor-El taking Lana somehow and...GIVING HER A TATTOO!

    Oooh. That's evil.

    Why Lana? Well, because it's convenient to the plot, dope. But hey, I managed to happen across a little article on our very own Superman Homepage explaining the tattoo, and I think it's right on. Check it out.

    Credit goes to Kryptongirl for that one. And by the way, if you're too lazy to go look, it basically says that LL is carved into her back, stylized. What that means is beyond me, but I guess it makes Lana the third key?

    So Martha confronts Clark and turns him into Superman Red and Superman Blue, and they start whomping on each other, and one disappears, and Jonathan is suddenly fine. Okay, I can say that the whomping and the returning makes sense, but why would Jor-El bring Jonathan his brain back? It seemed like he didn't like Jonathan, so he'd just leave him a vegetable, right?

    I think it would have been better to simply say that Jonathan was in a coma, and hearing Clark brought him back, but that's just me. The other is going to be a lot harder to explain.

    A Clark KO, to add to the other Clark KO earlier. He's gaining on LEX! And Lana gets a KO too. Quite the day for headaches.

    I like how Jonathan just immediately starts making out with Martha when he wakes up. That'd be me, too.

    I snap out of a brain dead coma to my usual brain dead self, here's my list. "Nurse! Bring me the latest Rucka issue of Adventures, the latest Loeb Superman/Batman, an advil, and a glass of PEPSI EDGE! (PRODUCT PLACEMENT). Then get me a shotgun, an eyepatch, and a lottery ticket. I feel lucky today, for some reason."

    "All right, Neal. Anything else?"

    "Annette O'Toole to make out with. STAT. Ready 200 CCs of spit to swap and a diaper. I've been in this bed for a while, and who knows how much control I have over my functions."

    "That's disgusting." CRACK!

    "That's for poking fun at a coma victim!"

    "But Socrates says that the waking mind is-" CRACK!

    "Too smart! That's out of character for a fetching nurse!"

    Et-hem. Sorry. First review back, you know, having a little fun. Heh heh...

    No! No! Steve, don't do it! I promise I'll be good!


    Okay. Back to the review. Sigh.

    The Lionel Luthor and Lois Lane scene is tense. Lois has her acting chops, and the dialogue certainly didn't help her. Perhaps one of the best dialogue episodes of the whole show, save that whole part where Margot says, "Where did Clark go?" And Annette, without a smirk, says, "Oh, he flew away!"

    I spurted my Pepsi Edge out my nostril when I heard that (PRODUCT PLACEMENT!).

    Is it just me, or does Lois have a real Shannon Elizabeth vibe? It's something about the body type and the face... the lip especially. Interesting, and not bad at all, if I can get over her mentholated breath.


    All right! All right! But she is hot. AND legal.

    Great casting choice.

    Another Monty Python joke.


    In this episode, there is one person in her coffin. Chloe Sullivan, would you please stand up?

    Ah yes. Chloe has learned the first lesson of not being seen. Do not stand up.

    Was I the only one completely baffled by the conclusion Clark makes, and the utterly foolish way with which he pronounces it? He uses his x-ray vision to look into the coffin, and Chloe is not there. So he turns to Lois, who has no idea why he can see eight feet under ground and suddenly divines, "CHLOE'S NOT DEAD!"

    And then the only thing missing was the warbling violin and then the theme from The Young and the Restless.

    So yeah, Chloe's apparently still alive. This is why Clark uses his fists and Batman's a detective. Get this, Sherlock Kent. When you get blown the heck up, THERE AREN'T ANY PIECES LEFT! So what are they gonna put in the casket? I'd put all of those crummy Torch articles that they included in the Smallville comic. And Lana.

    "Use your kung fu to dig your way out of that!" Pound pound, the final tamps with the shovel.

    And she'd be like Uma Thurman in Kill Bill, but eventually she'd have a broken pink wrist and no air. Go Chloe's coffin!



    So anyway, yeah, that's all my little witty comments, I hope I have made you laugh despite my rust, and now I will move into my little area where derisive tangent is applauded, the business section, and it's quite busy this time around, four months of mail, don't you know?

    In light of the fact that all of my criticisms are mostly superficial jibes that are just for the sake of poking fun, and given that the flight was fantastic, as was the story, the dialogue, and Lois, even though I thought I would not like Lois in Smallville, we're gonna start this season off straight up with a 5 of 5. Go team.


    When a problem comes along, you must whip it. In this episode, everyone is naked, Lana's got a tattoo, the dialogue rocks, and Lex is Indiana Jones. Don't ask. Margot Kidder is a bit jaunted, Jonathan should be brain dead, and there's all kinds of incomprehensible stuff up there about Monty Python, the Legend of Zelda, and believe it or not, black Kryptonite. What the heck is black Kryptonite? 5 of 5 and exes for eyes.


    Nice long summer, there. What have you been up to?


    First I let all of your email pile up until I had 150 to go, because I was dead dog tired after my last 21 page review. Then I started plugging away, and I got about ten emails a day while I did it, so I responded to all email in mid-august. Seriously. I think, in all honesty, thanks to all of you wonderful folk, my inbox will never be clear again, so please, be patient. I appreciate your patience. And remember, the shorter the mail, the easier and more likely a quick response, and there's also the private messaging here at the Superman Homepage now, and my IM services, if you need them. Noahtreadwell for Yahoo, scotttreadwell69 for AIM, and for MSN. I love talking to folks online, and it's much more expeditious, because I'm right there if you want to talk "Smallville" or the reviews.

    That said, don't be afraid to send long letters, I love them, just don't be mad if it takes a bit.

    I haven't heard back about the novel yet, but thanks to all of you who asked. I sent it off in late June, and it takes editors a while to decide. I'll keep you guys up on it, because so many of you read the piece, and I thank you for your critiques.

    I sold a house, so I have some money to write and not work for a bit, so if you all see me slacking off, smack me around. I have no reason to.

    I've also got a few surprises for you guys for the start of the new season.

    First off, I managed to secure an interview with Jeph Loeb about the new season of Smallville and the comics, among other things, so feel free to go check that out.

    Also, I have a new contest that we'll be doing weekly. Basically, I see a lot of sites with Caption Contests, and I know that "Smallville" fans are close knit and into hilarity, so I asked Steve if we could do a weekly Caption contest that I could moderate, given that the new site has comment capabilities and it sounded like fun.

    So here's the deal. Each week, Steve and I will pick a good picture for captioning (Superman related), and have you guys plug away at it. You can even send your pictures in, and we might use it. There's no prize to be won (yet), but what I'll do is moderate it, and pick a winner each week, which I'll showcase here in the Business section and give the mad props they deserve. It'll also be a good way to laugh, relieve a little tension, or whatever it is you do when captioning.

    I'm warning you now, VULGAR, RACIST, or otherwise naughty captions will result in banning, so don't do it. And by vulgar, I don't mean what I think is vulgar, I mean what the MPAA would call vulgar. Like, for instance, my diaper joke above is quite borderline, and a nun would certainly slap my wrists for it. So be careful. We will delete once and warn, and then ban. This is a family friendly site, period.

    Poopie. CRACK!

    Sorry about that. If that wasn't funny, I would not merely be whipped right now, but in super-traction.

    And FINALLY, starting next week, I will respond, right here, to the best letter I receive about Smallville each week. Ergo when you send stuff henceforth to me with Smallville involved, it runs the risk of being reprinted and responded to here. And don't worry, I'll be nice, not Strong Bad. Unless, of course, you ask me how I type with boxing gloves on.

    ALSO, though I haven't gotten to it yet, over the next few weeks I will be notating all of the Clanas to add to the KO Count, which is now updated with a number of new things, which I'll detail below. I have a few new categories suggested over the summer, including...well, we'll get there.

    Okay, I gotta go rapid fire, because there are so many of you this time around. So I'll write a name, and then a colon, and then what the person contributed that I thought was cool and of note, or corrective in a whip crack kinda way.

    Cory, Jeremy Hill: The Dinsmores owned the farm where Lana was trapped. Correct! My mistake.

    Cory, Will, Jeremy Hill, Eric: Emily didn't rip out hearts, she phased them. Again, an error on my part.

    Will, JB: Emily's shaking hand should have bonded with the bodies on a molecular level...but then again, they get away with it in the comics (with the Flash and Martian Manhunter). A good point.

    Jon Hauge: Here's one of my favorite ideas of the whole Summer. Jon asks why Clark is upset that Pete is leaving when he can simply run across the country in a few simple minutes and see his buddy at any time? My guess is the effects budget. And that they want Pete out.

    Mark: Chloe's mother hasn't been seen in forever, ergo I am not sexist (see the review for the episode Truth, I think it was.).

    Mark: Chlorine is extremely toxic (that's the chemical that Emily used on Lana in the box). Therefore Lana should have been in the hospital with lung damage and bronchial mucosa or dead from respiratory failure. Not "Clana"ing in the loft with Clark. Mark also suggests a column for how many times Lana should be dead, but then, that's all the time with me. Mark suggests perhaps instead of Chlorine using Carbon Monixide would have been better.

    And what better way to get a stinky gas like that than to play that episode again? Good God. That one was all me.

    Christina K, Aaron Keel, JB: Chloe has no mom! (Again, see Truth).

    Aaron Keel: Water knocked Emily out because when she phased, it was too thick, so it shorted her out.

    Eric: Why did the roof nearly fall in Memoria? I mean, yeah, Clark was mad and thrashing, but he wasn't tied to the roof!

    Steve Crow: Emily's powers were remarkably similar to the goons in Kinetic, but no one notices in town? Also, perhaps the FBI didn't just let Lex talk to his dad, maybe Lex just got there faster. He does drive fast. And maybe the writers were going for deep significance with Emily being stopped by water, considering she drowned. Further, if the farm was abandoned, as it seemed, why would the water tower be full? Why is there power for Lana's cage, you know, electricity?

    Good catches, Steve.

    JB: JB gets the distinction of having written me and told me he thought the Lexana would happen long before I could have thought it plausible, and he DOES certainly get nyah nyah nyahing rights. He called it WAY ahead.

    Phillip: Perhaps Kara got her powers with the meteor strike, and when Jor-El used her he didn't expect her homicidal urges?

    Mike Cooke: That line about Lara and Jor-El loving Clark all the days of his life was rather biblical for a Kryptonian nudist! Then, he thought, if God created Earth, he must have made Krypton. Psalm 23 reads:

    "Surely goodness and loving kindness shall follow me all the days of my life and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."

    Well, at least until the Crusade, I guess.

    Virge: A key opportunity for the show was missed when Jonathan didn't get an "I told you so" with Clark about Lex. Pa knew about Lex all along, so it would seem, and he didn't get his nyah nyah like JB does.

    Virge also notes, quite astutely, that Lionel would not attack Lex and Chloe without attacking Clark and his family. So what gives?

    Maybe, as Lois suggested in this episode, Lionel didn't do it?

    Or maybe, this is my theory, Lionel was planning on doing it on another day, because three murders in one day can't be explained away.

    Also, many wrote and pointed out to me that the ending was just like The Godfather. I didn't miss that, per ce, I just left it out because it seemed obvious to me, as I recall. But then, my memory is quite faulty.

    I came up with another angle to explain away Jor-El not being malevolent as well over the summer. Maybe he's malevolent now, but Clark will teach him to respect humanity. That would play right into the myth nature, as in Greek classical literature, Zeus was taught to respect humans by Prometheus' noble semi-crucifixion on the rocks to give men fire, being killed and resurrected again and again to save man...maybe that's a workable angle here.

    JB: When Jeremiah got his powers, he lost his glasses and his neatly combed back hair a la Superman. I missed that. Also, if we need further clue as to which Luthor is Zegeef (sp? My spelling), we simply note that it didn't glow when it drew near to Lionel at the beginning of the climax scene, but later, when Lex arrived.

    Jim Nechleba: The chlorine gas has a side-effect of blindness, ergo Lana could not see Clark bursting in, but this doesn't save Lana from reacting far too soon to the gas.

    Jim also points out that in my memories, I was incorrect on several points. Lex uses the submachine gun in Hug, not Stray, and Lex and Ryan talk comics in Ryan, not Stray.

    Steve Crow: Kara never claimed to be Clark's cousin.

    Cary Kingdom: Told me that the music at the end of the Season 3 finale was Mozart's Requiem. And I've been listening to it ever since.

    Adeel Farooq points out that Lana didn't have a new car in the Season 3 finale, it was the same car she's had all year.

    POUT. It's still new! :)

    Ben in the UK: Could Pa have flown? When Jor-El gave Kara powers she could, and Pa is certainly old enough.

    Ben also likes the band Ash, which came up in conversation, and that's makes him worthy of another mention, because Ash rules.

    Ben also has two suggestions for the KO Count, but I need some help to start one of them. First, the most outrageous uses of Kryptonite not covered under "hurts Clark", and secondly, a percentage of how many villains are adults as opposed to kids. Check that out in the new and improved KO Count.

    Simon Dean: If Clark's intent per Jor-El is to rule the world, then why did he send Clark to the Kents and not the Luthors?

    I'm more to the point, I guess. If you want your son to become a despot, why put him in the heart of freedom, American farmland? Why not drop him in communist Russia or Iraq? He'd rise up really quick in the name of some religion and put everyone down happily, because that's the way a lot of other underprivileged countries act... whose fault that is is another debate... point being, you're right, Simon. Why the Kents if Jor-El wants a ruler?

    A lot of people wrote in suggesting that the sequence at the end was a dream sequence of Lionel's. So many I couldn't keep track. But the deal is, if it were a dream sequence, why did Clark get sucked into the wall? That's kind of, well, not something Lionel would dream of in his opera dream.

    Michael Herrick: Michael has patented the "I affirm you, BUT..." dialogue trap in Smallville. He says to watch for it, and you'll see the writer's device, citing a dialogue between Helen and Lex, close to verbatim:

    "Lex, I know you have issues with your father, BUT maybe inviting him to the wedding would help clear the ground."

    "Helen, I appreciate your concern BUT you don't want to get involved in Luthor family squabbles."


    Ma: "Clark, I know you and Lana are having problems, BUT maybe you should go visit her at the hospital."

    Pa: "Clark, I know it's frustrating for you, BUT it's my job to protect you."

    Lana: "Chloe, it's really great that you've opened your home BUT I guess I just don't feel like family."

    Interesting point. Watch for it. Send examples.

    Interjection from Neal: I love getting ideas for the KO Count, but unless you have three examples, I can't throw it in there, so be sure to have three examples. The above is a good example, though I can't make it a KO Count because I can't find every one, it would literally kill me, and it's also something I can't easily watch for. So send them in, just make sure not to just suggest the column and have no examples!

    Daniel O'Leary suggests a KO Count idea of "inside jokes" for fanboys, like Maggie Sawyer. If anyone wants to send me a list, I'll make a column out of that, no problem. I need episode citations, but that's a good column.

    Steve Crow: In the transcript of Lionel's phone call Lex reads when he's rescuing Pete, there's a blatant typo. It reads, "Of course, there life insurance provided the seed money." There and their, folks! Like you're and yore! I mean, your. Aw, heck with it. Im dum.

    Conchief Fernandez: The music in the finale was Mozart's Requiem, Introitus. Conchief also, I believe, is the first person to write me from the Dominican Republic! Too cool!

    Stephen Gentry has provided excellent citation and a whole slew of items for the KO Count, with regards to automobile accidents in Smallville. Check that out, it's great!

    He also motions to add Jordan Cross to MIA and important to the mains. I'm adding him.

    Also, I want to make a "times Clark Kent directly lied" column, but I need examples. Come on, you guys who have seen the show eighteen times! HELP! :)

    We here at the Smallville review make fun of all errors after we ponder regretting them. Nah!

    Well, that's it! almost 7,000 words, guess I haven't lost my touch. See you all next week!

    Remember, hit the caption contest, the Loeb interview, and the new, improved KO Count! And send in those letters! I've cracked my knuckles and I'm ready to go!

    Welcome back! Poopie! CRACK!

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