Superman on Television

Smallville: Episode Reviews

Season 9 - Episode 2: "Metallo"

Reviews:

Metallo

Reviewed by: Douglas Trumble

Super Short run on sentence summary: John Corben is hit by a truck then ends up a lab rat for the Zod squad which gives him Kryptonian powered cyborg parts and allows him to take on the blur in a misplaced vengeance fueled showdown.

I really liked this one. I liked it a lot. Sure the origins of Metallo were changed up a bit and I am not so sure if he is a full robot with a man's brain YET but it's not like he cannot get there. I like the idea that Zod and some renegade Kryptonians were messing around with some Luthor corp. tech and used Corben as a Guinea Pig. Sure there are similarities to how Cyborg got his upgrade but the differences with the kryptonite and the crude nature of the procedure all fit with someone who has absolutely no respect for the subject.

At least when Lex did it to Victor he wanted people to think he cared. Zod obviously has no care in the world. He just wanted to see if they could power themselves up artificially and the fact he creates a super villain in the process is of no concern to him. Nice how in an episode where Zod isn't even present I am finding myself liking him as a villain more and more.

I think it's important to point out too that Metallo is, from what I can remember, the first full fledged super villain on the show who has now faced this version of Superman as Superman. John Corben has no idea who Clark Kent is other than a name. He met the Blur as the blur sporting the S and everything.

Even better was the fact that in the end Metallo was not killed. Powered down yes but they actually took the time to say he could be powered back up easily. See. That's all I ask. One little line that shows Clark's battles don't always end in the villain's death.

Clark's ingenuity impressed me as well. Faced with a powerful adversary he used his head and planned ahead. No backing down even with the danger to himself. Nope, just make a plan and go at it anyway. Even better was the fact that Clark's plan with the EMP grenade didn't work and he still used his head and found a way to beat Metallo and save Lois. One of the better Super villain showdowns on the show if you ask me. It showcased Clark using his mind, his powers, and his bravery to save Lois after she got something like her 212th concussion.

People always wonder why Lois Lane in the Superman stories never sees through the glasses (or the voice changer in this case) and I am now certain it is truly due to brain trauma (no wonder a kiss can wipe out her memory). Seriously though. I admit that scene after she came to was totally awesome to me. The way they shot it with Clark in the shadow, blocking his face but still making the S visible while she talked to him... Awesome. The way Clark almost stepped forward just before chickening out was great. They are really doing a good job showcasing his confusion on his feelings.

I think that is an important thing to point out here. Clark is not sure how he feels about Lois. He feels it but doesn't understand it. It is why he couldn't just say goodbye. It's why he sticks around and went back to his Clark Kent life.

It is understandable even if it's just a plot device to keep the cat and mouse game going on the show. It's a good enough reason to me and I really do love what they are doing with this romance. The whole thing about "their phone booth". Lois' excitement at his calls and when he asked her for help. Clark honestly wanting to hear her tell the story about how she helped the blur afterwards.

I am a big dumb guy to the core but I can really appreciate the romantic side of what they are doing here and not just because the wife tells me that. So good job so far Smallville on the Clark/Lois romance because I know telling a romance that has been done before in a different way and still doing it well is no small thing.

It was nice to see Chloe and Clark somewhat make up. I think there still might be some tension there but I think at the very least they took some steps back in the right direction. I liked how Chloe backed off her judgmental stance when she saw Clark was sincere about why he was still calling Lois as the blur, and for Clark's part he saw that Chloe was right about him not putting Clark completely behind him and decided to drop the act for the most part.

So good Superman vs. super villain episode with some nice Lois and Superman interactions. I found no faults.

5 out of 5.

Next week? I don't know. It seemed like they were promoting a lot of episodes to me. Either way after this one I am as stoked as ever for the rest of the season.

Doug



Metallo

Reviewed by: Neal Bailey

MAIN POINTS:

  • Emo Clark is still emo.
  • John Corben is in an accident and becomes Metallo. Like, the real Metallo.
  • Metallo is given a stern talking to by Clark.
  • Clark decides to be Clark again.

    REVIEW:

    I was sitting in my writing room ruminating about the state of my back when the Neal of the future walked into my office and sat down.

    "Believe it, baby." He sits down across from me and starts making guns out of his fingers and shooting me. "Money talks!"

    "How did it happen?"

    He winks. "Well, I wish I could say it was our brilliance, but it's just an accident of philosophy."

    "When?"

    "Two hours from now, just after you finish watching the new episode of Smallville, and about an hour after you sit down to write the review."

    This seems strange, so I screw up my face. "But wait. This IS the review of the new episode of Smallville, so how the hell are you giving me information about it while I'm in the middle of reviewing it? I should have already seen it by now. Technically speaking, I should be you. But I'm the Neal of the past."

    He nods, thoughtfully. "If you think about it too much, my son, you will not be able to comprehend it. Much like Smallville."

    I nod. "You have learned much in the last two hours, and are in point of fact sage, sexy, and astute."

    "I agree!"

    "But you have learned absolutely nothing about the perils of poor dialogue attribution."

    "That's because I don't need to. Dialogue attribution is for wusses who bow to their readers. Any idiot with half a brain could follow this up and realize that I am the Neal of the future. I have learned the zen art of screw the reader."

    "But they're too lazy to do that, just like viewers of the show blame their own inadequacy in scrutinizing on people who regard something with a higher standard. We face the choice of making our reviews accessible to that lot or being rendered obsolete."

    "Or maybe we just have a quirky reader base that would have already left by now if they were going to be frightened off when you get hit with the weird. Or, as it's termed in college parlance, the literary bent."

    "Jesus, I have grown up quite a lot."

    "Oh yeah? Pull my finger."

    FFFFFFT!

    "Still falling for that one, I see."

    "Falling for it, or seeking it? Neal of the future, why have you come to torment me?"

    "I just want to give you some insight, because in about an hour you're going to wonder why you're disappointed with the Metallo episode, and how it's fair to be so, given that all of the element basics of a good Metallo story are in there."

    "But that's you! And you'll be writing this then! And if I have the question then, how do I answer it now?"

    "Look! A rabbit!"

    "My hold God, Neal of the future. You've turned an old review joke into an existential quandary!"

    "Don't you see, Neal of the past? I HAVE TO! If I don't, then how will people write you hate mail about how you ramble tomorrow after this is published? If I didn't insert the Donnie Darko reference, then you would simply get to the point, and I would have lost at least fifty good words of time! TIME! And anyway, the video has the words horny, and sex in it. That's better than a fart in terms of garnering a readership, to say nothing of Drew Barrymore."

    "Rowr.... Er, I mean, GET TO THE POINT!"

    "All right. Neal of the past, riddle me this: If you were to watch an episode of Smallville, and it were to promise to feature Metallo..."

    "Go on. I'm following you."

    "And this Metallo looked exactly like Metallo. I mean, dead-on. Good makeup. Good acting. Everything he said and did felt like Metallo. Even his central catharsis, aided by some good acting for the dude who rapped "We Gotta Do Dis Thang!" back in 1992."

    "Sounds plausibly good, if impossible in this plane of the multiverse."

    "And then, suppose that there's an ingenious new addition that no one's ever really thought of before because of the static medium of comics. Metallo's heart... it BEATS."

    "Get right out of here! Go back to Tacoma!"

    "No, really. Like, when he gets excited, it beats faster. And when he's calm, it honestly looks like it stresses the guy to be made out of metal. Top notch stuff."

    "If this were to be the case, if I, as a Neal in the past, were told all this, I would ask you how high you were if you didn't give that a six of five."

    "Exactly! See! Exactly! And thinking that very thought broke my mind, because I'm still disappointed."

    "What? WHY!?"

    "I don't know! All I know is that as soon as I thought it, the great Gazoo appeared, told me to remember the keys, and BAMF! Here the hell I am!"

    "How's George Carlin? Have you lost weight?"

    "I believe I have, thank you. And George Carlin is dead. We're still atheists."

    "I think I can solve your quandary, Neal of the future."

    "Hmmm. But if you do, I may cease to exist as the Neal of the future."

    "But to stop me from telling you now, the only way is to kill me, and then you cease to exist anyway. You know I can't keep my mouth shut when I want to open it, being me."

    "Or I could kill you, and start a new timeline as the Neal of the future in the past, and then only you would cease to exist and I would become the Neal of the past. Theoretically."

    "OR I could simply disappear, and then Tess Mercer could find a computer that I've masterfully hacked to explain away nothing."

    "But I'm the Neal of the future. You're not trying to escape me. All you have to do to keep existing is to keep existing. Haven't you been looking at the dialogue?"

    "Mental note: Learn dialogue attribution skills in the next hour to smite myself in the future."

    "They're overrated."

    "No they're not."

    "Yes they are. Brilliant writers shouldn't have to kowtow to readers who don't pay attention."

    "Arrogant writers should bring their prose down to earth."

    "I'm beginning to question if you're really me, Neal of the past. I was never that humble."

    "According to philosophical theories stating that we're a new person every instant on a molecular level, we're not the same person, Neal of the future."

    "Mollycoddle and malarkey! That's like saying that Smallville has changed in the last few years, and on an internet message board that will-"

    "You hated Metallo because there was no big fight scene to culminate all of the character work. It's like putting Tom Welling in a Superman suit and never seeing him fly. Which is, to wit, all this season has accomplished so far. Kltpzyxm LAEN!"

    "I'll be back in 90 daaaaayyyyyyyyys!" said the Neal of the future. And then an airplane engine slammed into his room.

    POIT!

    Beyond all that, though, Brian Austin Green did turn in a surprisingly decent performance. It's even safe to say he stole the episode. The problem is, the rest of the cast and the rest of the plot is still the same plot it's been wallowing in for years.

    Lois magically comes back to the Daily Planet without any consequences from the finale. Tess then leaves really easily found spyware instead of, I dunno, just grabbing Lois and torturing her until she gives in. And given that the last time they met (as the show points out) she was whipkick fighting Lois over next to nothing, it... ah, ah, ah.

    Chloe starts slamming on Clark interpersonally for things almost completely unrelated to what she was slamming him for last episode. The onus is not on the coherence of the idea of an angry Chloe, it's more just, "CHLOE IS MAD AT CLARK NOW! WRITE IT STRONG!"

    Tess has now found what seems to be a scary thing. That a bunch of Kryptonians have landed on Earth, hundreds, in varying places, in the middle of symbols. But then, who were those guys last week? Are these the same guys? Are these new guys powered? It's so fractured and incoherent, even by Smallville standards, you quite literally have to pause and think about it to try and fathom it. One of the people is from the House of El. Here comes some great continuity, mark me on that. Haw.

    And then, after all of these Kandorians appear, their goal is to gain powers by... making Metallo? At least, that's what I think was implied. So you're a Kryptonian, and you want to get powers (because inexplicably, you don't have them?), so you turn to a chunk of poison rock?

    Hi, I'm Neal. I want to lift a car. Time to replace my heart with cyanide gas!

    There are also glaring inconsistencies that leap out and bite at you. Like John Corben buying a warehouse on a GI salary. Clark being unable to get to Corben before he snatches Lois. Hundreds of Kryptonians without powers appearing and A) Clark and Jor-El don't notice, B) No one else in the world notices.

    Then there's the potentially plausible but still insanely hilarious deduction Emil makes. "Whoa, dude! Looks like you're heart's been replaced by a rock!" You know, without any probing examination, without the moment of disbelief, like you'd have if I said, "Yeah, my stomach is gone. It's a basketball now, and I can dunk without thinking, boyeeee!" You wouldn't leap to that conclusion just because my stomach said SPALDING. Even in a world of crazy.

    Emo Clark is still emo, and it's out of character and a waste of time. It disgusts me, honestly, because Superman isn't an emo kid. He's the ultimate optimist. He deals with the negative pragmatic realities of life, but he's not the go#$@mned Batman.

    He's also not a killer, which was another annoying dilemma this episode overlooked. Clark sees a guy with a Kryptonite heart. In other words, a machine man, for all intents and purposes. Like Brainiac, a sentient machine.

    He then, without hesitation, throws an EMP he knows (or believes) will end this sentience. That's killing. It's borderline murder, given that there are many other ways he can take care of this guy (for instance, what he thinks of AFTER he potentially kills the guy, with a chunk of lead).

    The bottom line of that was that Smallville was willing to show Clark as being careless about murder for the gotcha moment of Metallo rising from the grave.

    All of that aside, however, Metallo DID look awesome, it did add something to the mythos, and the actor did a find job. Now if only he would have thrown a single punch, it might have been better than it was. A bonus point for faithfulness to the mythos, but the story itself is largely bankrupt still.

    2 of 5.

    LETTERS:

    Vic wrote:

    Neal,

    First off, I'm happy to see that you're still providing us with reviews, as I do enjoy them, even if I disagree or think you're too harsh sometimes. I just have a few things to comment on and then I'll end this email with a question/observation about the 'S' symbol.

    I don't think this episode was too bad. I was definitely entertained. It went by very quickly (especially when you DVR it and skip the commercials) and I was left wanting more (in a good kinda way, not a disappointed way), so I have to disagree with your rating. Probably a 3.5 for me. I'm excited to see what the rest of the season brings.

    Glad you enjoyed it. That's always my preference, that I'm wrong and people are having fun.

    I wanted to comment on the new Friday time slot and many others' opinions that it's the death knell for a show. I'm pretty sure that shows like Monk, Numbers and, more recently, Psych have had pretty good runs on Friday nights, so Smallville should be alright. Plus, have you seen the Thursday night lineup of shows this season? The Office, Fringe, Grey's Anatomy and Flash Forward (didn't watch the premiere of the latter, but heard lots of good things about it) all on the same night??. Not sure how you feel, but that's a lot of good television to compete with, so maybe the move was merited.

    I don't honestly watch too much television, but I like to think I have a pretty good idea of what's going on. I'd never heard of any of those Friday night shows aside from Monk...

    I think if they wanted the show to lose competition and grow in popularity, they'd pop it on Hulu before they changed its time slot.

    Finally, getting back to the show, I wanted to get clarification on Clark leaving the 'S' symbol. Maybe I missed it, but did he ever actually say, or did we see, that he was the one leaving the symbol? It appeared at the train scene when Lois meets John Corban and it also appears after Clark takes "future girl" from the cage fight scene with Lois and Oliver; I was under the assumption that "future girl" was the one who left the symbol because they show her using or attempting to use her heat vision just before Clark arrives, and she was facing directly where the symbol is left on the fence/cage. Also, she was on the train with Lois and could've have left it before she disappeared.

    Yeah, they show him etching it.

    I haven't seen/heard anyone else mention this, so I was wondering if I missed something during the show where Clark said he is the one leaving the symbol. Your thoughts?

    Thanks for taking the time to read this and I'm looking forward to the next episode as well as your review.

    Kind Regards,

    Vic

    Thanks, Vic! Hope you keep enjoying the show.

    Fred wrote:

    Neal,

    Normally, I agree with you. The show has been a trainwreck since Bo Duke left. Lord knows, I've hated Lana since Day 1. But, I watch out of perverse pleasure. It's like scratching chicken pox. You're not supposed to do it, but you can't help it; it's just...there. But it can leave a scar.

    I think you're wrong on this ep. I completely turned of my brain and enjoyed it. It took me the all of 30 seconds going from, "WTF, where/when did this all happen. 3 weeks??" to, "Oh, I get it. The writer's need to get to point A to Point B as quickly as possible, and they are doing it classic comic book style. No rhyme, no reason. Just the occasional side bar to allude to some past event that doesn't have to have been read to get what's going on." For example "*as seen in Action Comics #345!"

    So what you're saying here is, "You're right, it was a train wreck, but you're still wrong that it was a train wreck!"? I'm not sure I get it.

    I have no problem with that- and here's the rub: nor should you. Didn't you go off at one point last year and state that you were no longer going to watch critically? Question: how many comic book storylines have just jumped from story to story after a 6-issue arc? I've resigned myself to consider Smallville in the same light, and I gotta tell you, it's easy on the old noggin to look at it that way.

    I don't recall the "I'm not going to watch critically." review. Doesn't seem wise for a critic to agree to no longer critique. I think what you are referring to was my last review of the season, where I decided I would no longer take notes and spend a lot of time verifying things which are self-evident. I've already given sufficient cause to prove that the show is careless, so I won't try to justify my thoughts in that regard every time. That's all.

    I would never (and have never) excused stories that drop everything after a six story arc, and I would never (and have never) forgiven a show for making clunky changes just because. I think once, I was willing to give a lightswitch change a chance last year when it was Lois and Clark in the Planet, provided they kept the momentum it provided, but it fell flat.

    Fact: Smallville writers knew who/what they wanted to throw into the gumbo this year. So why should they bother getting bogged down in the minutia of last year's recipe? Spice it up, baby! I thought Zod was great, liked John Corban a lot, and there you go. At this point, I want to see someone throw down, for crying out loud.

    Any statement that begins with fact begs to be refuted. This particular statement is easy to refute. You're suggesting it's okay to leave plotholes so long as they don't get bogged down in last year's recipe. That'd be fine and good, except they're still in last year's recipe. Clich, arbitrary occurrences and drama, a lack of awesome action, and completely forgetting anything as soon as it occurs.

    So, practice what you preached, brother! Tune in and turn off!

    Oh, for the love of God. Next!

    Bill Peace wrote:

    I've written once before, back in season...something or other, when Jor-El was/wasnt being channelled through Lionel (the only good part of the show before his change of heart, along with Michael Rosenbaum). Now I am writing again to ask if there is any mention of how Lex Luthor dying turns this from a reimagining of Clark Kents childhood/young adulthood into a elseworlds experiment? I know a major tenant of the comic book genre or graphic novel is that no one is dead until there is a body produced, and still there is a chance of death being short lived (pun?). But we saw the scene in the last season where Clark sifted through Lex's ashes. Perhaps it was a fake Lex (hint in the credits) and Lex will come back like predicted by the seer in the first or second season, where he wears the black glove and white suit (so awesome). I don't know. But I have frankly given up. The only reason i bought last season was because i missed it and heard something about doomsday and, like a little fan boy, ran to snatch it up only to be dissapointed by stock footage of a factory blowing up. But is there any hope that the show will end with the audacity and brilliance of the finale of the third season? (my favorite episode by far). Continue writing if just for the sake of good old times.

    I will, and thanks for writing again, Bill!

    No, there's been no mention of an Elseworlds. I honestly think that's just how we can it into tin to make coherent sense of a dalliance. They honestly think this is a reconciled universe, I'm sure.

    Peace

    Bill

    Serethiel wrote:

    Hey Neal!

    Yo!

    I hope you had a pleasant summer. How have you been? I myself could complain, but I won't because it would get annoying, and I don't want to waste your time.

    Nah, wouldn't be a waste. I had a good summer. I finished book seven, and finished a rough of book eight. A year dealing with two deaths and a bankruptcy has focused me like a laser beam on my priorities and led me closer to my dreams. I also had a few comics come out and sold about 80,000 books. Can't beat that with a stick.

    We live in hope.

    I had a very mixed reaction to last week's "Savior." In a way, it felt like a big reset button. Clark is no longer at the Daily Planet, Zod is a MAJOR (WTF?), and the whole Doomsday storyline seems as though it were all but forgotten. Shouldn't they still be cleaning up Metropolis? I mean, there was only an ULTIMATE DESTROYER stomping through the streets three weeks prior.

    Oh, but it's been three weeks. I mean, look how fast we erected the World Trade Center monument after... /Heeeeeeey!/ Wait a second!

    I haven't the slightest clue what is going on with Zod and his crew. The only thing I can figure is time travel has something to do with it, but i still don't understand it. Someone sent Zod back in time with his entire army and then imprisoned them in the orb? On what planet does that make sense?

    You're not crazy. It is utterly incoherent in most every respect.

    I will have to say Callum Blue's performance did take me by surprise though. The only thing I'd ever seen him in prior to this was the sequel to the Princess Diaries, so I was more than a little concerned about him taking on ZOD. But he didn't do so bad... incoherent plot line aside, and believe me, that's hard to put aside.

    This may surprise you, but I haven't seen the Princess Diaries. Heh. I have to see him in a few more episodes. After the ham-handed open they did, I want to see how he plays as a character.

    I also feel like they're rushing the whole John Corben arc. He's supposed to have his solo episode this Friday, and I could care less about the character. What in this episode was supposed to make me care about him? He barely got any screentime, other than about 5 minutes of snarky banter with Lois and a forced kiss. Next week he's Metallo... call me crazy... but shouldn't they have spent a LIIITTTLLLEE more time setting him up? The audience knows nothing about him in this context, and some don't know him in any context at all (a fairly sizable percentage of the show's fan base don't read the comics)

    That was another weird, sucky thing in the episode, how he calls Lois and is like, "Hey, beautiful!" After a week? And then he's a villain in a half hour.

    And then the week after this we get an episode about Zombies? ZOMBIES? Seems to me they should've just thrown that idea out altogther, spent this week really fleshing out John Corben, and THEN giving him his villain episode. I like caring about my characters... even the villains.

    Anyway... i guess that's all I wanted to touch on. Thanks for taking time to read. And take care of yourself. :)

    You too!

    Serethiel

    Will wrote:

    I thought this season might have a chance to not be a complete let down. (barely)

    I figured it would have (HAVE) to be the last season of the show.

    I was hoping that if they were wrapping things up, then there might be an interesting story to go with it.

    Then I found out the Callum Blue has signed on for at least two seasons.

    Now I'm just thankful I can fast-forward.

    Will

    Kneel before capitalism. I've always said they'll go until there's no more money in it.

    Antonio a.k.a. Dark.Shingo wrote:

    From now on, i'll choose to be refered as Antonio, my real name, because if i have to punish myself for keep watching this... this... [INSERT APPROPIATE TITLE HERE], at least i'm letting everyone else know my name so they can make fun of me.

    Aaaaaaanyway. Do you remember how i complained about this masochist relationship with Smallville? I have to confess: not only i fell again for it, i dragged my girlfriend along. And i will never forget her expression and what she said when they showed Clark atop the building trying to be all dark and misterious:

    "Dear god, is he trying to be Batman now?"

    I swear to god i love her even more since then.

    And hey, at least you're hanging with a gal. That's a good thing.

    It only took them 2 episodes, TWO!, to make him drop the "i'm leaving my humanity aside" act. Seriously. And not even two, i think by the end of the first one it was pretty much a fact. Is this the man who will become Superman? Choosing a path and quitting at the first two steps just adds to the whole MOUNTAIN of reasons Clark seems unfitting at that task with every season.

    Well, yeah, and he's still killing people. That's important.

    I'm not going to focus on either of the episodes, but on the general overview of what do i'm feeling since i've watched them:

    a) The symptoms from the last season manifest now as a full-fledged disease now: the writers of the show have no clue about the characters anymore, since they've done so many stuff with them that they forgot what they used to be. I know, it's nothing new, but sincerely, to see it right from the beginning of a season makes you wonder. Clark went from broody to emo to confused to guilty so fast that made me dizzy. Chloe went from "i got a purpose now" to "please bring back Jimmy even if that messes things up" to "you must not put others in danger" and preachy. And don't get me started on how Sherlock Holmes you have to be to come up linking a ring with time travel (in case she knew about the Legion, delete that line). Tess was the manipulator, then the hostage, back to being the manipulator... only that this time she doesn't know anything. Pffft. And Zod. Oh God. "Kneel before Zod". That would've been so impressive if the guy didn't knock him out like he was a mad man. Only to kneel before him after a lame speech. Now i get why kriptonians got wiped out from the universe.

    Apparently they didn't in this universe.

    b) Not only they forgot what the characters are all about. The frist episode was a mixture of so many things happening at the same time that they simply gave up the task of explaining what to make up of that. And the next episode wasn't much of an improvement. So, David Silver came to town in the last episode, hits on Lois (because everybody hits on Louis since Lana is not around anymore). I think he missed the 90210 reunion and ended up in Metropolis. And then he gets run over by a truck in a scene that is more hilarious than anything. And then he gets the terminator treatment (something he must be familiar with thanks to the Sarah Connor Chronicles). I have a hard time figuring out how creating a kryptonite powered cyborg is a test for the Zod army of getting back their powers. So, whatever, he wanders for half of the episode and finds the photo of her sister (sewers and sweepers don't seem to work well in Metropolis) and suddenly remembers his grudge against the blur. Blah blah blah, Clark goes to Louis to find out who is the guy with the missing keychain and somehow he believes she won't get in trouble (rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrriiight) and stuff happens and she gets caught and Metallo and Clark fight and he does a great move, and Metallo performs a fatality on himself and Clark stands in the shadow while Lois takes a good look at him (really, is she THAT dumb?) and more stuff happens and then we end the episode with a touching moment. And that's it. Pretty much. Oh, and the nude guy in the El family crest. Whatever. Is it me or the last two bad guys have a sucide thing going on? Oh, i get it, Clark can't feel guilty of taking their lives, because they did it on their own... Pffffft x 2.

    And don't forget, he did try and take Corben's life, he just screwed it up.

    Now i just don't get what are they trying to do. They're using the "Spiderman 2: i can't use my powers if i don't make up my mind" thing? Do they remember he's Superman? Or that he has to be at one point? God, please, give them a clue.

    It's almost gone the full gamut from fun to stupid back to fun again, for the sheer crazy that comes out of the box.

    Nice to see you back. Hope to read your reviews as always. Keep it up and have a good season! (Or try to...)

    Thanks! I'm having fun.

    Bruce Kanin wrote:

    PLUS

  • The return of Shelby, the unsuper-dog! Any appearance by this genial golden retriever is a plus in my book. I want a Shelby!
  • The return of Martha Kent! Well, not Annette O'Toole. And, well, not even in a photo. But "Mrs. K" was mentioned twice in the episode, so at least the show acknowledges her existence.

    I'm actually amused that her re-election campaign wasn't even mentioned now.

  • The third live TV appearance of John Corben! Corben made his TV debut on the "Superboy" TV series and appeared again on "Lois & Clark". He really made his debut way back on May, 1959 in ACTION COMICS #252. This memorable issue featured, on the cover, the debut of Supergirl, with Metallo's origin being the "backup" story. That story was much simpler than Smallville's version: Corben is in a car accident and a kindly old scientist gives him a Green K-powered android-like body. He turn out to be almost like an evil version of Iron Man!
  • I did kind of like Clark rescuing Lois from Metallo, because it hearkened back to the comic book origin story and other situations in which Superman saved Lois.

    MINUS

  • John Corben's transformation into "Metallo", the Man with the Kryptonite Heart, was about as contrived as could be. Presumably they'll explain just who operated on him in a future episode, but it would have been nice to understand something about it in this episode. The actual chest implant was a horrible, garish looking thing, like a giant spider.
  • Oh, and there was some mumbo-jumbo about either LexCorp or the Kryptonian villains being the ones behind Corben's transformation, I think. It wasn't real clear.
  • As well, Metallo is, at this point in the series, a ho-hum villain. Why? Mainly because the abundance of Green K and the various Green K-powered freaks of the week that weakened Clark on so many occasions. As such, there was nothing special about Corben.
  • Clark disappears for awhile and comes back to his job? His desk was taken by Corben and now Clark gets his desk back? Huh?
  • Corben's reason for hating The Blur was about as convincing as Lex Luthor hating Superman for making him bald (from the Silver Age comics).
  • The Clark-Chloe relationship, which used to be wonderful, is now crap. Their conversations are trite and stale and boring.
  • I'm tired of seeing Tess work out. She's tough. We get it. And who's that kid, Stuart, helping her? Seems like an escapee from MTV.

    ZERO

  • How on Earth is Clark ever going to become Superman without everyone knowing that Superman is Clark? We've talked about this before: everyone knows Clark's face. The Blur will have to be come Superman at some point, with his face known to the world. Unless somehow he puts on hypnotic glasses (shades of SUPERMAN #330 in 1978, when it was explained that his glasses, made from his Kryptonian rocket, help to hypnotize people into thinking that Clark & Superman looked different) or Zatanna comes back to use her magic and convince people that Clark looks different than Superman...well, what a hole the writers hath dug.
  • It's encouraging that Clark wants to be human again. What's not all that convincing is how quickly he gave up his stoic, unemotional, Vulcan-like stance that he had only a week ago. As annoying as that was, they should have given it a few more weeks. And where's Jor-El in all this? Doesn't he have a problem with Clark becoming human again?
  • I liked Clark melding a lead shield onto Corben - nice thinking on his part using the convenient plate of lead on hand - but why did it cause Corben's heart to fall out when he removed the lead?
  • In the New York area, "Smallville" was preempted for the Mets game. The Mets game? How appropriate. A sinking show replaced by a sinking team. They finally ran the "Metallo" episode on Saturday when my DVR picked it up.

    Honestly, I haven't seen a Mets game in a while. I'd have tuned in.

    OVERALL

  • D PLUS. It was better than the season premier, but not by much.

    COMING ATTRACTIONS

  • The coming attractions were kind of a blur, so to speak. Looks like Lois & Clark take a major step forward in their relationship.

    Bruce Kanin

    All in all, I think there was a lot of potential in the show, and they tried to exploit it, but there's just too much they're trying to do.

    Watching this show, and watching House right before it, you just cringe. You really cringe at the difference in quality in almost every respect.

    You do highlight a differing problem I didn't realize. Maybe the reason Metallo didn't hit me as hard as he could is just what you mention. He really is just one more guy with Kryptonite in his blood in a crew of hundreds...

    Neal



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