Superman on Television
Superboy: Episode Reviews
Season 2 - Episode 2: "Lex Luthor: Sentenced to Death"Reviewed by: Jim Bennett (lastson78)
"Haven't you ever just cared about anyone, Or were you born a monster?"
At the hospital, Professor Peterson waits outside until a doctor gives him the news. Back at an undisclosed location, Luthor is in hiding with Lana, taunting her about Superboy's condition. At the hospital, Superboy awakens with Prof. Peterson by his bedside. Peterson tells Superboy that he plans to take him to a facility to rehabilitate him.
Meanwhile, back at the dorms, Andy is running a phony production company so he can scope out girls. Superboy calls as Clark to let him know that he won't be around for a while. At a sleazy club across town, Luthor meets a dancer named Darla. He hires her to be his assistant. Her first assignment - drop off a videotape in Superboy's room, which she does that night disguised as a nurse. The tape plays, and succeeds in taunting and angering Superboy.
The following day, Superboy leaves the hospital, and is bombarded by the media as he leaves. Lana watches the broadcast on TV as Luthor walks in. Lana meets Darla for the first time, and they make nice... by fighting, until Luthor breaks them up. He reveals his mini-sized version of the Superboy gun in a handheld variety.
At the rehab center, Superboy is training to try and restore his powers. At a news station, Luthor breaks in and takes over the broadcast. He taunts Superboy as he watches from his room. Determined to find him, he wants to test his powers. Peterson has him test his heat vision on a block of wood, but his power is too weak to burn it. Peterson has him try again, this time, with a piece of paper attached. Superboy is able to burn it, restoring his confidence. Now that his powers are strengthening, he looks closely at the tape to find any hidden messages. He notices that Lana spells out the location of Luthor's hideout, blinking her eyes in Morse code.
Superboy goes to the location to confront Luthor. In conversation, Luthor admits to killing Eckworth and Leo, which Superboy now has on tape on a hidden recorder. Luthor grabs the handheld Superboy gun and shoots Superboy, sending him out the window of the high-rise. He suddenly regains his powers and flies back up to Luthor's room, ties up Luthor, and rescues Lana.
Later, Luthor has his day in the electric chair. Luthor fakes a cough and slips a pill into his mouth while being escorted to the chair. When they activate the chair, Luthor illuminates, and breaks out of the chamber. Darla pulls up outside, and they both peel away, the prison guards firing at them to no avail.
Rating - 3 (out of 5): It's hard to say whether I really liked this episode or not it had some really good moments but I did feel like it fell short of the season premiere.
Firstly this season appears to be a lot more fraught with peril than the first. It definitely has a darker vibe to it which I enjoy, you really get the feeling of Lex's menace but I'm having some problems believing Gerard Christopher as Superboy at the moment. Hopefully that will change as the season goes on and he gets more comfortable in the character.
Lex is seen with some truly appalling wigs in this episode which is a stroke of genius, and I appreciate the addition of his new 'sidekick' Darla, played by Tracy Roberts, even if she is unbelievably 80s!
Lana takes a slap from Tracy in this episode but this time hits back! I like a Lana with a bit more fire in her rather than the Smallville version's reaction to everything Lana. We need to believe that Clark would fall for her and, as we know later in life he gets that in Lois, so that clearly must be his type!
There are however a few low points in this episode. I really don't think Gerard Christopher plays angry Superboy very well and there is a nasty bit of ADR halfway through but that clearly isn't his fault. The whole rehab thing I don't really get, I mean we know that Superman had rehab when he came back from the dead but where was the inclusion of yellow sunlight? Then he's falling out a window and randomly has his powers back but they don't explain why. It just feels a little bit like a cop out. Oh and on a side note, what was he in hospital being operated on? Was he now not invulnerable? How did they know he wouldn't be able to walk again? Was he suddenly human and not have a Kryptonian biological make up? Also, he had his costume on the whole time and it was totally intact... but maybe I'm just picking now!
There were a lot of things in this episode that could've been fleshed out more but I do feel like I might be saying that a lot as it is only a 20min show and every episode can't be a two parter. So I guess we'll just have to wait and see what the next episode holds for us. This one I really am looking forward to.
Join me next time for 'Metallo'.
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