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Kent Screentime Minutes, and some thoughts

 God, it feels like this took me forever to get around to.

I guess I could blame a busy weekend, or a terrible on-again, off-again headache that has just been messing me up for 2 days.

But in reality?  I expect its just more about my general feelings about the show this season, and the episodes.  Which isn't to say that I didn't like Kent well enough.  I did.  Its just that even with stuff in the episode I liked, I'm not sure that its enough to shake me out of my general annoyance and lack of patience with the season overall.

In any case, here are the numbers

Kent running time 41m, 39s (50s previously on)

Clark:  19m, 2s
Lois:  11m, 22s
Tess:  11m, 16s

Emil : 2m, 42s

AU Clark: 16m, 26s
AU Lois:  2m, 27s
AU Jonathan:  7m, 33s



The most obvious thing to take away from this episode is just how great Tom Welling can be when he turns it on.  In this episode, much like in the previous AU episode, Luthor, he's spectacular not only in his Clark Kent persona, but in his role as Clark Luthor.  And unlike that previous episode, here Clark Luthor actually got some development.

But, my biggest problem with the episode is that it still wasn't enough development.  Especially not when you factor in the ending he got.  I like the idea that Clark Kent might be the one that could help to set Clark Luthor on the right path.  But I think we needed to see some inkling of good in Clark Luthor along the way.  As fascinating as the interplay between CL and Tess was (and it was!), I'm not it brought out enough insight.  We did get confirmation that Lionel was an abusive bastard to CL, but I think we all already figured that out.  But maybe if we had seen more genuine hurt at Tess, essentially, choosing Lionel over him.  Or maybe if we had seen some longing, or envy, when he realized that Clark in this world was loved and admired as a hero.  Or maybe if we had gotten more of the sense that CL felt genuinely afraid to lose the last possible place for him to go in this world, to the point of desperation.  All, or any, of these things might've given some of the additional dimension that this character needed to believe in a possible redemption.

As it is, I guess we need to count of the AU's version of Jor-El, who is now unsilenced.  Of course, how that happened is a big question mark.

But, aside from TW's great performance, this episode did have a lot of good scenes in it.  All of the stuff between Clark and AU Jonathan was fun to watch, as Welling and Schneider have always had such a great vibe.  And I have to admit that Clark being the one to turn AU Jonathan around was a lot more rewarding to watch then I expected.

The scene between Lois and Clark Luthor was also a blast, and so well played by both actors.  I love how flat and insincere CL is with lines like "That will never happen, thats why we're together".  

As a big fan of the chemistry between Tom and Cassidy Freeman, of course I loved seeing them working together so much in this episode.  And crackle and spark still works for me.  Unlike Luthor, there wasn't so much of the hotness here.  There was just too much menace hanging in the air.  But the actors brought a great intensity to all of their scenes.

And I enjoyed the scene between Tess and Emil.  I don't much buy romance between these 2 characters, but I do buy friendship, and Alessandro Juliani just does a great job with any scene he's given.  Not much escapes Emil's notice, and I like that about the character.  It reminds me of his interactions with Chloe back in S9, when he knew about her Big Brother stalking of the JLA way before anyone else.

I do have to say though, I'm not at all comfortable with Emil and Tess going behind Clark's back and taking the remnants of a kryptonian artifact that Clark thought he had destroyed.  Thats the kind of shit Chloe did, and I didn't like it then, and don't like it now.  Sure, it was a plot device to bring Clark back, but still...the implication is uncomfortable.

Also, how is it that Clark Luthor was able to come through with the mirror box, when Clark didn't go through with the mirror box either time he got sent to the AU?

One of the things I had to ask myself with this episode was if I thought the point it was trying to make was enough to justify the whole revisit to the AU.  And thats a point I'm still struggling with.  I do think Tess' storyline has merit, and especially when we know who will be back for the finale.  But I'm not sure a revisit from CL was necessary to show that pull in her towards her dark heritage.

And, as much as it was great to see our Clark be able to help AU Jonathan, I'm not sure how necessary it was.  If felt like an excuse to bring back John Schneider (much like the original AU ep felt like an excuse to bring back John Glover).  And I admit I feel a little ambivalent about that.

The first Clois scene was fun, but the last Clois scene just didn't quite click for me.  I find Clois to be very sweet, and very comfortable, and very loving, and thats all nice.  But I think I need a little spice and fire in my sweet and comfortable to remain engaged.  

I'm sort of hoping that Clark doesn't sell the farm.  It just wouldn't feel right to me (though I wouldn't hold it against him or Lois).  I do like the idea of them moving to Metropolis though.  Anyone think we might hear about the fate of Shelby?  Nah, me either.

And I just end this with....Holy Cow Cassidy Freeman!  Where ya been hiding that crazy body??

Sorry for the short and shallow review.  Its about all I could muster.

Comments

( 43 comments — Leave a comment )
(Deleted comment)
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 03:02 am (UTC)
Well, I think its because Lois felt that Clark was annoyed with her, so thats why he might be acting different. So, I understood that.

I've always thought that the SV actors varied from week to week, and I suspect that has something to do with scripts and directors.

I'm sorry the show never gave Clark and Lois a reporter storyline. Another lost opportunity. *sigh*
tasabian
Apr. 19th, 2011 03:36 am (UTC)
I wish they'd made this a three episode arc. Would happily have sacrificed at least half the S10 eps to see this plotline get more substance. The final scene with CK rushing CL to the Fortress were far too rushed to carry much impact.

The most obvious thing to take away from this episode is just how great Tom Welling can be when he turns it on. In this episode, much like in the previous AU episode, Luthor, he's spectacular not only in his Clark Kent persona, but in his role as Clark Luthor.
I'm hoping this catches the eye of a casting director or two - makes a great audition reel for him.

I'm not at all comfortable with Emil and Tess going behind Clark's back and taking the remnants of a kryptonian artifact that Clark thought he had destroyed.
They may not get to it by the time the series wraps but Emil famously does betray Clark in the comics - occasionally the show seems to drop little hints in that direction, or AJ conveys it with his performance. If the last eps weren't so over-stuffed, I wouldn't have minded seeing that plotline play out.

ETA....'cause idle speculation.

Edited at 2011-04-19 03:53 am (UTC)
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 01:42 pm (UTC)
I also wish that, if they were going to do this whole Clark Luthor thing, they had spent more time developing him as a character. The possibilities and dynamics of it are potentially fascinating, but the way they executed is shallow as a puddle. I do appreciate what they've hinted at, and the interactions between Tom and Cassidy have been amazing to watch. But ultimately, it sort of feels like half a meal.

And yeah, I can't help but wonder if any of this was really necessary for the shows last season.

I think Clark has had enough of "friends" betraying him on this show, so I'd rather they didn't go there with Emil (or Tess, for that matter). In this last season, it would be nice to believe that Clark actually has some loyal friends. As it is, I'm not sure I can think of one that I'd say 100% on, outside of Lois. But then again, maybe thats what they are going for. *sigh*
(Anonymous)
Apr. 19th, 2011 06:57 am (UTC)
Kent is the sequel to Luthor in that we revisit the parallel universe and we have the returns of Ultraman Clark Luthor and alternate Lois. We also see the debut of alternate Jonathan. Through Clark's viewpoint when he returned to the parallel universe, we get to learn what happened to Clark Luthor, Oliver, and Jonathan in that world and how it parallels and differs from the real SV universe.

Clark shined through this episode. Everything that our Jonathan taught Clark is reflected back at alternate Jonathan. He set Clark Luthor on the path of redemption when he send him back to his universe' Fortress of Solitude.

I may not agree with Dr. Hamilton and Tess taking the destroyed Mirror Box behind Clark's back, but it was necessary to use it to bring him back. Also, seeing Clark having Jor-El send Clark Luthor back does destroy the point of Dr. Hamilton and Tess using the Mirror Box.

I don't believe Clark will sell the farm as Martha and Conner may need to move back when her Senate run is over and Conner starting school. He can still move to Metropolis while retaining the farm.
It's another step towards his destiny.

They did another flight tease through Clark Luthor. Seeing him fly while our Clark still hasn't destroys the notion of Clark embracing his Kryptonian heritage to fly. I enjoyed their interactions this time that we never got in Luthor.

Put together this with Luthor and you'd have a Smallville movie about the parallel universe and Ultraman Clark Luthor.

Much, much better episode from Peterson, Souders, and Sparling who wrote the story.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 01:47 pm (UTC)
Clark did shine in this episode, and thats a big reason why it was as enjoyable as it was. I've said all season that we were really missing some components of who Clark/Supes is shown on screen. And one of those components was actually seeing how he can inspire people, and how he can help them onto the right path. This ep did that successfully with AU Jonathan, and less successfully with Clark Luthor. And thats as aspect of Clark we should be SEEING, not hearing about with fan testimonials.

One of the things I really DID NOT like about this episode was how AI Jor-El is written as one big fat deux ex machina when it becomes a necessity for a plot resolution. Lazy, lazy, lazy writing.

Did Clark Luthor fly?

I do think this was a better ep overall then Luthor, and yet Luthor had certain things that I did enjoy more. Overall though, I do have to ask myself about the necessity of this AU at all in this last season. It seems more "bucket list" to me then real necessity for our Clark's last chapter.
tariel22
Apr. 19th, 2011 07:35 am (UTC)
The most obvious thing to take away from this episode is just how great Tom Welling can be when he turns it on.

This episode was a treat for me, just because it gave me so much of Tom, and gave him such an opportunity to shine. Clark Kent and Clark Luthor are so different, and I enjoy them both. I especially loved seeing CK embody Superman so perfectly in his scenes with CL and Jonathan. Believe me, I'm happy Tom's not a part of Snyder's MOS, but he could have rocked it so hard.

CL's possible turn for the better was extremely abrupt, and the episode would have been much better with the kind of character development you suggest. Unfortunately, trying to do too much in 42 minutes has become Smallville's trademark. I did like the scene at the mansion between CL and Tess. His emotional response to the destruction took me completely by surprise, but Tom made it believable as a hidden layer of vulnerability, rather than a moment of OOC behavior.

I thought all the performances were really good. I love this cast. The only parts that bugged me were how none of the mirror box stuff made ANY sense (par for the Smallville course, though), and that last scene at the farm. It didn't make a lot of sense to me either. Exactly what lesson was Clark supposed to have learned there? He's never placed physical things above the people in his life, and he hasn't been glued to the farm since he started working at the DP.

I don't want Clark to give up the farm anyway. Why doesn't Martha keep it, and Clark and Lois can go ahead and rent a place in the city? Why does the decision fall on Clark's shoulders? What kind of senator doesn't maintain a home in her own constituency? I can't imagine Superman without the farm to go home to in times of emotional and spiritual crisis, but of course that's always been about the love and guidance he's found there, from his parents, and on Smallville they don't live there anymore. *sigh*

I think in a lot of ways I've already moved on. Ever since filming ended, I've found myself infinitely more interested in what Tom will do next than in what these last few episodes of Smallville have to offer. I liked Kent a lot, and I think I'll love Booster. I have my doubts about Dominion and Prophecy, but I'm content to wait and see. And I think the finale will be great, as long as whatever they've cooked up for Chloe doesn't make my head explode.

Thank you for the screentime minutes, I so appreciate that you continue to give them to us. I wish Tom had that kind of time onscreen in every episode.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 01:58 pm (UTC)
Its very, very hard for me to dislike an episode with so much Tom, and him being so brilliant. I've always maintained that one can forgive a lot when you get certain things that make you happy. And for me, lots of Tom with great acting is one of those things.

Its true that they were never going to be able to cram everything they needed to truly bring Clark Luthor to life in 42m. And especially when they spent no more then 5m on him in his last outing. But for me, knowing the time constraints doesn't make me more forgiving of the writing, because this is a fact they are well aware of going in. So, as they say "keep it simple Stupid!" Don't create all this intricate scenarios that you can't adequately resolve in 42m

I also liked that scene between CL and Tess at the mansion. I totally agree that his reaction gave us a hint of what lies beneath. I wish the episode had included more of those hints.

It didn't make a lot of sense to me either. Exactly what lesson was Clark supposed to have learned there? He's never placed physical things above the people in his life, and he hasn't been glued to the farm since he started working at the DP.

I agree. I think they sort of invent these issues so they can act like they are getting some big emotional resolution. But really, its manufactured drama. And I just found Tom and Erica very disconnected in that scene. She was giving him a lot, but he didn't seem to be doing the same, which was jarring in an episode where he was so spot on. I guess they were trying to suggest that Clark was lost in thought, or something. But really, he just came off as distant.

I know what you mean about moving on. At this point, S10 is what it is, and for me, its a terrible disappointment. These last few eps aren't going to change that (especially given their descriptions). So, I think a sort of weary acceptance has set in.

And you're welcome :)
tariel22
Apr. 19th, 2011 06:45 pm (UTC)
But really, its manufactured drama.

There's been an awful lot of that in S10, IMO, especially between Clark and Lois. I miss the fun, flirty banter between them, and the way they used to butt heads sometimes. Lois is a little too soft for my taste lately. I appreciate that she's always there for Clark, and Erica portrays that beautifully, but where's the fire? Where's that unique spirit that made him fall in love with her in the first place? We get glimpses, but I want more.

At this point, S10 is what it is, and for me, its a terrible disappointment.

That's the thing. For all these seasons I've hoped for certain payoffs from this show, and now I know a lot of them are never going to happen. Not that it's up to me to say what should happen, not at all, but of course I'm disappointed. And it's a done deal, it's over. It's time to put my hopes, and my passion, in the future. Tom's future.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 07:45 pm (UTC)
I think one thing that I've really taken away from S10 Clois is sweet and loving is very nice, but I think I need my TV couples a bit more fiery and tempestuous and spicy. Its just a personal preference.

And why isn't it up to you to say what should happen? There's nothing at all wrong with you having expectations. I think thats a natural reaction when you invest so much time in something.

I hope Tom's next project is a lot more fun for me.
tariel22
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:35 pm (UTC)
And why isn't it up to you to say what should happen? There's nothing at all wrong with you having expectations.

Oh, I'm not apologizing for having expectations, or being upset when they're not fulfilled. I just wanted to make it clear that I recognize that my opinion isn't the only one that matters. I get that I'm one voice among many, and that a lot of people are perfectly happy with how S10 has played out.

I may be a hater at times, but I hope I'm not an entitled one. ;)
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:38 pm (UTC)
You aren't. You are very respectful of other opinions, and very clear that you are always speaking for yourself.

Thats why you're the nice one! :)
costas22
Apr. 19th, 2011 10:04 am (UTC)
Thanks for the screentimes and the insightful review. I hope your headache has finally gone. :)

The most obvious thing to take away from this episode is just how great Tom Welling can be when he turns it on.

He was brilliant as Clark Luthor. And given more screentime in Kent, I feel that he did a better job here than he did in Luthor. When Tom plays the bad guy, it's really fun to notice how he pays attention to detail. Like when CL is playing with his ring. Or when he was tapping on the desk as Tess was searching for Lionel at Luthorcorp. Or when he was mocking Chloe behind her back in Persona. But the best part about his performance was his expressions. It made it believable that he was a completely different person.

But, my biggest problem with the episode is that it still wasn't enough development. Especially not when you factor in the ending he got.

Yep. If you are going to pull off an ending like that, give us a reason to believe that he really wants to change. The only inkling I got that he wasn't a total monster, was that after Lionel's murder he was looking to settle down with Tess. Which still wasn't enough and kind of ambiguous in itself. I have to say though, that I completely disagree with his redemtpion. Imo, it's too late for that and he is Ultraman after all.

As it is, I guess we need to count of the AU's version of Jor-El, who is now unsilenced. Of course, how that happened is a big question mark.

Jor-El probably got rid of all the disco apparatus at the AU FOS when the RW FOS sent CL there. Not hard to imagine. Jor-El can probably go back in time and prevent the Big Bang at the moment.

All of the stuff between Clark and AU Jonathan was fun to watch, as Welling and Schneider have always had such a great vibe.

Exactly. I've always been a fan of their scenes. Despite his flaws, Jonathan was always a father you wished you had, even if you were perfectly fine with your own. And in this episode, Clark was like the friend you wished you had when your life was going nowhere. Lovely change of dynamic.

Unlike Luthor, there wasn't so much of the hotness here. There was just too much menace hanging in the air. But the actors brought a great intensity to all of their scenes.

Heh, I knew we would agree on this part. I loved their acenes. While it's true that there wasn't something hot like a kiss, I still got an erotic vibe. It was combination of menace and flirtation, I felt. Kind of like Cape Fear. It may just be me being a hopeless Clesser, but by episode's end I was wondering if Tess and CL had the hots fo each other. Other than the actors themselves, I think the director did an excellent job in getting that across.

And I enjoyed the scene between Tess and Emil. I don't much buy romance between these 2 characters

Thank you. *Snif*

Sure, it was a plot device to bring Clark back, but still...the implication is uncomfortable.

Didn't agree with it a lot, but like you said, it was necessary to the plot. At least I give Tess and Emil the benefit of the doubt because they never tried messing with the remnants of the box until there was a real need.

One of the things I had to ask myself with this episode was if I thought the point it was trying to make was enough to justify the whole revisit to the AU.

Maybe they liked how Luthor turned out and they wanted a revisit. If we were in a different season, and there were more actors available, I wouldn't have minded a 2 or 3 parter about the AU. As it turns out, I can only take 2 things from this episode as we move towards the finale: 1)The farm getting sold and how a meeting with AU Jonathan gave Clark perspective on that front. 2)CL's visit drawing Tess back towards her Luthor origins. I don't like where they are going with Tess there and I really it doesn't alienate her from Clark. :(

And I just end this with....Holy Cow Cassidy Freeman! Where ya been hiding that crazy body??

Tell me about it! It's all I've been thinking about this week. :P I've always found CF stunning, but she took it to another level there.

Again, sorry for the length. I think I'll have less to say about the next 3.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 02:10 pm (UTC)
The headache comes and goes. I'm convinced its stress.

Tom is great at playing the bad guy. And I always find that he finds a way to make each bad guy somewhat different from the last in very subtle ways. Its fun to watch him have so much fun.

I do applaud the idea of Clark Kent making enough of an impression on CL as to shake his world view and force him to question his actions. But, I don't think you can sell redemption in a snap, and the resolution doesn't quite come with the security we need to know that for CL, its redemption or life long incarceration.

Jonathan Kent was, for me, always an interesting figure on this show. Because really, I can appreciate his strengths and weaknesses as a parent. And I liked what a fleshed out character he was. And JS and TW have always been able to make their relationship very real. I did have to laugh though when Clark said that JK taught him to be "honest", which ya know, Not Even A Little! LOL Jonathan and Martha, bless their hearts, taught Clark to lie and hide. There's no 2 ways about that.

To me, for me, Tom and Cassidy just have that spark that elevates chemistry from good to great. I don't really care if other people see it or not, thats how I feel. And I believe thats probably one of the big reasons that this Cless AU connection was established (much like an Alicia arc was written into S4 precisely because TPTB saw how much chemistry Tom had with Sarah Carter). To me, through their performances, Tom and Cassidy seemed to suggest a whole dysfunctional dynamic that took place almost entirely off screen. And thats some feat.

I really hope Tom and Cassidy get to work together again some day. But maybe in something where their spark and chemistry can be put to better use.

I think after S8 with Oliver, and S9 with Chloe, I'm just so sick to death of Clark's "friends" doing all this sneaky shit behind his back. It just makes me feel like they aren't really his friends.

I do find Tess' storyline fascinating to watch, and thats mostly due to Cassidy. But I know I just don't buy that her pull towards his Luthor genes would ever override her desire to be on Team Good. Again, it feels a little like manufactured drama to me, rather then something organic. But Cassidy sure does sell the crap out of it.
costas22
Apr. 19th, 2011 10:35 pm (UTC)
Heh, I guess you could say that Jonathan's parenting had little to do with honesty. Of course there was always a reason for that and I could cut him some slack. It was always the treatment of Lex that bothered me more. I am not a Lex apologist, but the show went overboard with that. One final thing about AU Jonathan. He was living at the Kent farm right? And he never realized what was going on between AU Cless at the barn near his house? :D

I did find what you said about AU Cless interesting. A lot has been said about Cless pandering. I don't buy that, since LoTess was ahead in line if TPTB were set on satisfying fantasy shippers. We will never know I guess, but I wonder if TPTB ever regretted not going forward with some kind of Cless when Tess first arrived on the scene. Imo, Clark needed a transitional relationship between Lana and Lois. And as enjoyable as the Clark Luthor/Tess dynamic has been, a pairing between a bossy S8 Tess and Clark Kent would have been just as fun for me. I usually don't make any ship requests for Clark, but this would be the only exception.

Seeing Tom and Cassidy together in a a different project would be really amazing. Not too likely, but never say never? Maybe Tom will bring her on Hellcats for a guest role and guest star himself as her boyfriend, lol.

jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 11:05 pm (UTC)
Don't get me wrong, because I don't blame Jonathan or Martha. I just hate when the show is careless like this. There are so many things that Jonathan did teach Clark. But honesty just wasn't one of those, because it couldn't be.

I also didn't like how Jonathan treated Lex, but I sort of understood that too. Between his hatred for Lionel, and his over protectiveness of Clark, and his gut telling him that Lex might have some issues, I think he just couldn't reign himself in.

Here's the thing...in order for a group to be pandered to, they sort of have to be visible and vocal. And while I've come across people who like how Tom and Cassidy work together, the idea that there is some loud fandom out there that TPTB would care to pander to is ridiculous. They'll pander to something like Chloe fans, because they are loud, numerous and relentless. But Cless shippers? Thats laughable.

I think they had Tom and Cassidy in scenes like this together because they see how well they work together and how good their chemistry is, and they want to play with that. I think its as simple as that. And maybe also because Tess is their Luthor, and it creates a connection between Clark and a Luthor while Lex is gone.

Never say never.
awehla
Apr. 19th, 2011 03:56 pm (UTC)
Cassidy's boobs were nice in that dress.

I agree with pretty much everything you said - it was a nice ep but was it necessary? Also no kissing - this was a very chaste episode again.

Lisa
x
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 04:36 pm (UTC)
I hate to be crass, but Cassidy has great boobs. I like to see curvy girls with a little bit of bounce to them.

This season has been full of "bucket list" to its overall detriment, I think.
awehla
Apr. 20th, 2011 02:23 pm (UTC)
Ha ha not crass at all. Being big busted myself I do have a bit of a fascination with boobs.

I agree - I think someone pointed out to me they just seem to have a checklist of things they want to cram in and since then I can't help but notice it all the time. I think Smallville went too far down the superhero route and should have stuck more to Clark Kent's story and those of his friends, family and colleagues. Imagine how different the show would have been if Clark had actually been to university or travelling and done some normal things alongside his whacky adventures.

Lisa
x
jeannev
Apr. 20th, 2011 02:27 pm (UTC)
Its funny you should say that, because with the recent quotes from Tom about his show has always "been about Clark", I've been thinking lately that they should've laid off all the Superman storyline stuff, and concentrated on writing an origin storyline for Clark. Instead, they decided to have to both ways, and I just don't think that works.

You can't bring in Superman villians, Superman's love interest, DP reporter, hero of Metropolis, JLA, etc and then claim "its about Clark Kent". Does not compute, ya know?
awehla
Apr. 22nd, 2011 03:42 pm (UTC)
Well the writers probably don't realise the division between the two personas - they probably think well he's the same guy isn't he? But you are right a lot of this stuff is more Superman and what you would read in the comics rather than being about Clark Kent.

Lisa
x
tjw_jaypat
Apr. 19th, 2011 04:02 pm (UTC)
I didn´t count the words, but I agree with every one of the them. :)

A few things in no particular order. Why did Clark lie to Lois in the last scene when she asked him about the AU? There was no reason for this, except that the writer probably tried to avoid that the dialog goes in the wrong direction because Lois might have wanted to hear more about it. But that could have been easily avoided by Clark saying that the tells her later about it, not now. No big deal.

Emil and Lois retrieving and repairing the box that Clark "destroyed" is not just another instance of people going behind his back, it also reflects badly on Clark. Just as he kept hiding important things somewhere in the barn where everyone could easily find them when it was convenient for the plot, he is now unable to really destroy things but obviously just damages them enough so they can be fixed later when it is convenient...

The fortress scene was indeed one awful deaus ex machina. Not only was it not believable that CL would all of a sudden be accessible to doubts, let alone regret, a moral monster like Jor-El is now supposed to deal with another moral monster and help him with his rehabilitation? Good joke! And where does the happy relationship between Clark and Jor-El come from all of a sudden? Last time I checked, he had disowned his son. There was nothing in Abandoned that changed that fact.

You and others have said it before but I am really impressed by the menace that Tom is able to portray. Except for the strangling scene at the end, there was no physical violence, yet I never had a doubt that everyone around CL was in extreme danger all the time. You simply wouldn´t want to mess with that guy. Add the erotic component and you almost get some sort of a nonphysical abuse if not rape going on there. A violence without obvious violence. Just brilliant!

My only very minor complaint would be that in the very first scene at the DP, there seemed to be a tiny bit of CL transpiring through. On the other hand, given that Clois is so chaste and distant, I wouldn´t be surprised if it were real... :(
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 04:45 pm (UTC)
This was an easy review to count the words, since this was very short for me. I just didn't have much more in me.

I'm not sure why Clark didn't tell Lois about his experiance with Jonathan in the AU. I also found that odd, and it was part of the reason why I felt a disconnect in that scene. I was surprised so many people liked it (but totally respect that they do).

Having the people around Clark do all this sneaky shit, and having him be oblvious about it, or just blindly forgiving them, has been a long running problem with this show. And you're right, that in the end, it ends up reflecting badly on Clark. I just try to use my imagination and tell myself that in the future, Clark is going to have 2 real true blue friends in Bruce and Diana. Some of the ones he has now will fade away. I hope.

I knew, all along, that they were just going to blow off the AI Jor-El stuff, and pretend it didn't happen. Its really what they've done all along. AI Jor-El is really nothing more then a big plot device. He is whatever they need him to be to propel whatever plot they are pursuing at any given time. And thats the laziest form of writing imaginable.

I totally agree with you about the amount of menance Tom is able to bring just by the way he stands, and talks, and the look in his eyes. And its impression. And its not always when he's a bad version of Clark either. I remember him threatening Lionel at the end of Mercy in S5, and he was freaking scary, as our regular Clark. I hope he gets a role in the future that is able to take advantage of that skill.

The first Clois scene I actually liked. I definitely like them more playful then sappy sweet.
tjw_jaypat
Apr. 19th, 2011 05:02 pm (UTC)
>I definitely like them more playful then sappy sweet.<

Yes, I miss the former banter and playfulness too. But IMO in this first scene it kinda interfered with the playfulness of CL. It made it look somewhat similar (minus the menace of course).

By the way, remember that CF interview in which she mentions some difficulty on Tom´s part playing bad? After Kent, I figured that it may have to do with the intimacy of the menace he had to play. Just like he couldn´t throw orange juice at Bonnie Hunt in CBTD2, he may have a problem with treating a woman, moreover a friend, in the way CL does. After all, he´s known to be very respectful, caring and polite. At least this is my benign interpretation because I can´t imagine CF would bash Tom...
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 07:41 pm (UTC)
I definitely don't think Cassidy meant to bash Tom. I just think she could've chosen her words more carefully. But I'm sure it was meant affectionately.

But you might have a point. Perhaps its the violence towards women that causes Tom some discomfort.
canadabear
Apr. 19th, 2011 07:04 pm (UTC)
Also, how is it that Clark Luthor was able to come through with the mirror box, when Clark didn't go through with the mirror box either time he got sent to the AU?

I think I'm confused with your wording here. Clark did go through the mirror box both times in "Luthor."

I sort of liked the theme of the episode, although in true SV fashion it was about a subtle as a brick wall to the head. And of course, Tess' storyline fascinated me and has convinced me more than ever that she'll be siding with Lex in the finale. As for her body, yay push up bras/doublesided tape! Cass actually is quite skinny and doesn't have that much of a chest, so I think wardrobe gets the kudos on that!
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 07:40 pm (UTC)
When Clark went thought the mirror box, the mirror box itself didn't come with him. Not the first time, and not this time.

However, Clark Luthor waltzed through the mirror box with it still in his hands.

Inconsistent.

Then we had the mirror box only activated with someone was holding it and twisting it...until Emil and Lois zapped a blue light into the one they put back together, and Clark popped back through it. But why did it effect him, and not Clark Luthor?

Inconsistent.

Even with push up bras (which would've been hard to pull off in that dress) and doublestick tape, you can't create all that. I think they've just been successfully dressing her to conceal a bit there.

But yes, of course she's skinny. Everyone on TV is, pretty much. And I have seen her in person twice now ;)
canadabear
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:12 pm (UTC)
Ahh, I see what you're saying now. Yes. But that mirrorbox always has been. SCIENCE!

And I have seen her in person twice now ;)
:O JEALOUS.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:29 pm (UTC)
You know, now that I think about it, I now understand why they were putting her in those strapless, straight across necklines when they dressed her up. Because thats a good way to hide cleavage.

And, oh yes, SCIENCE!
wingster55
Apr. 19th, 2011 07:54 pm (UTC)
"The most obvious thing to take away from this episode is just how great Tom Welling can be when he turns it on."
That's been my stance all along really.

I wouldn't have bought CK redeeming CL no matter how long it was played..some people are just past the point.
What does all Clark have to do to Lex is talk? I mean I know he never really tried but...

Depends on what you define as betrayal..what Tess and Emil did is way less worse than what Ollie and even Chloe did.

"And I just end this with....Holy Cow Cassidy Freeman! Where ya been hiding that crazy body??"

Yes! ..Fail SV PTB for hiding that. FAIL I say!
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:32 pm (UTC)
Oh, so now you're on the "Tom Welling is talented" bandwagon? LOL

I honestly think Clark would support Lex if he really showed that he wanted to change. When you think about, Clark really let Lex get away with a whole shitload of things without doing much of anything about it. People always talk about how hard Clark was on Lex, but look at it objectively...was Clark snatching Lex up and throwing him in jail? Or locking him up some place? No, not at all.

And yes, I agree that on the grand scale of things, Emil and Tess are still lagging behind Chloe and Oliver in the betrayal sweepstakes.

The PTB fail for so many reasons, this is just one of many. ;)
wingster55
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:36 pm (UTC)
Dude when have I not been? Have I said he's bad?

That to me is why I thought Clark wasn't the greatest friend actually..no not jail but it was either ignorance and smiles or knowledge and accusations/judging.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 10:30 pm (UTC)
You've certainly given me the impression that you thought he was not good.

Yeah, yeah, Clark's a terrible friend. I've heard that one a lot. And everyone else has been such a model of friendship towards him.
la_belle_isa
Apr. 19th, 2011 08:45 pm (UTC)
I completely agree. Like you, I tend to be a lot more forgiving about the plot holes if I’m generally satisfied. I agree that it would have been better to get a short arc about the AU world and Clark Luthor. I have the feeling that the writers didn’t plan Kent at the beginning of the season.
I wonder if this is just me, but I found Lois strangely “subdued” and speaking with a soft voice that is not usual to her.
I agree that the Clark/Tess scenes were full of menace and erotic at the same time. I swear, when CL put his hands around Tess’ throat, and then caress her arm, I thought he was going to caress her shoulders under the straps of her dress.
I think it's safe to say that this episode is one for the Clark/Tom fans. I think the next might be the finale.
What a delight it is to see Tom play the bad guy. And I'm definitely at the pont where I can't wait to see him in other projects. I found his last interview encouraging.
jeannev
Apr. 19th, 2011 10:41 pm (UTC)
Way back when, when I used to be heavy in the LFN fandom, we used to talk about that all the time...how forgiving one was willing to be if one was sufficiently entertained.

I guess that explains why I'm so unforgiving towards S10, eh?

But yes, this episode? I was more forgiving of its problems.

I definitely think that Lois has been softened up quite a bit. Whether one thinks thats a good thing, or a bad thing, I guess depends on what you like about the character, and expect from her. I guess I think they went a bit overboard on the perfect girlfriend/fiancee thing, because I think by making her so perfect, they also robbed her of some of what made her interesting and unique.

I'm not banking on the finale being for Clark/Tom fans, but I hope so. I doubt Booster, Dominion or Prophecy are for us.

I can't wait till his next project. And for the first time in a very long time, I have hope that there will be one!
(Anonymous)
Apr. 20th, 2011 03:31 pm (UTC)
Hey Val! :D

Nice review as always. You pretty much summed up how I felt about Kent there, so there's not much for me to say about the actual episode. It's gotten to the point for me that I grade this seasons episodes on the amount of damage or poor portrayal of Clark that there may be. Kent did a good job with Clark, so I don't have any complaints there.

One thing that seems to be happening more frequently in the last few seasons is the amount of episodes that are done that feel like half episodes. Too much being crammed into a limited time which is usually followed by an easy, rushed, or unrealistic resolution. This is why I can't tolerate it when an episode such as Sleeper, Escape, Harvest, or Fortune gets produced, because I think that it would be better and more beneficial if elements of some episodes (such as Luthor and Kent if there's going to be focus on the AU and its characters) were expanded upon into another episode.

To be honest, I've pretty much lost the motivation to comment on Season 10 anymore. The next 3 episodes don't leave me with a sense of anticipation. Here it is Wednesday, and I haven't even thought about Booster. Kent was decent/good though, so at least there's that. I just think that when a series is made that features the future Superman, that it shouldn't be hit and miss if we're going to get a good Clark portrayal or not - it should be automatic, especially in its final season.

Another thing, and I just noticed that you mentioned the same thing above, is that this series should've just stuck to a young Clark Kent story. No cheap Superman-era gimmicks - it just hasn't worked out well at all. What's being done in recent seasons is that the producers have been in align-with-the-mythos mode and it's just not been a smooth transition from the previously established SV mythos. There's much that could be said about that subject but I'll stop myself there.

Anyway, hang in there, it's almost over. LOL We'll have to wait and see if there are some unexpected good surprises coming up as things wind down. I just hope that Booster isn't too cheesy, but it's a Johns episode, so I guess that's what we're going to get.

Take care,

Matt
jeannev
Apr. 20th, 2011 04:41 pm (UTC)
Oh, you know how much I understand the lack of motivation to comment on S10 anymore, and I think the next 3 eps all sound pretty depressing in their own ways.

But like you, I think it comes down to judging an ep based on what it does for Clark, good or bad. Very little else makes that big an impression on me, although I do like and enjoy Tess very much. I think I could've gotten invested in a DP arc for Lois, but it just never materialized.

SV does have a longstanding habit of rushing eps, so thats nothing new. I really think I just no longer have the patience for it, because S10 should've been done better. Instead, its worse.

I think this show tried to have it both ways....Superman, but without Superman. And it can't work like that. It takes a far more talented bunch of writers to juggle that sort of high wire act. And everytime I read someone talking about how great the writing is this for show (to include the actors), I do a spit take.

At this point, we're in the home stretch. And I'm sure some things in the finale will touch me. But I think its highly unlikely I'll be moved to tears.
carolandtom
Apr. 22nd, 2011 11:29 pm (UTC)
If I had had this much Tom on my screen every week I wouldn't have minded the show's constant mistakes so much.

Thanks for the totals and the great review! I'll miss them more than the show itself.
jeannev
Apr. 23rd, 2011 02:12 am (UTC)
I totally agree that more Clark is directly proportional to the enjoyment factor.

And thanks. I'll miss doing them...I think. LOL
shopgirl318
Apr. 23rd, 2011 08:28 pm (UTC)
Hi J it has been awhile. Your review hit all the right notes but I am sorry show I just don't any good in Clark Luthor and I believed that taking him to the fortress wasn't really going to change that. The only thin I saw in him ws more reepiness when he wasn't trying to kill Tess.

Emil/Tess I like their friendship and I know Emil betrays Clark in the comics but I want to see someone being loyal as well who isn't Martha or Lois. I wouldn't feel this way if all of his friends in the past hasn't messed with Clark in some way and the betrayal thing again is too much at this point. Though to be fair I still think Tess wouldn't keep it from him for too long. Her loyalty is less questionable than some of the characteristics. Like someone said on here what Chloe, Oliver was ten times as worse because their crimes stretched on 2-3 seasons and yes Clark isn't that great of a friend either but he didn't do stuff like this.

I hope you still comment. All of us have been watching the show because it is wrapping up really soon so I hope to your reviews at for the finale.

Clark/Lois I still like them together but my shipping has lost some of its steam. The actors have chemistry in spades but the it is on the writing and these cute-fluffy scenes. What happened to all of that spunk they had before. Maybe SV should have them as coworkers-friends when the show ended and maybe in the future (series finale) then give us hints they are together.

You icon is aweome. Clark-Tess has great chemistry. I wouldn't have minded to see a little thing to between them either.
jeannev
Apr. 24th, 2011 12:51 am (UTC)
Hey there :)

It was very hard to see any Clark Luthor when the show didn't really show any. And if this is the conclusion they wanted for his story, they should have. It wouldn't have been that difficult. And not killing Tess immediately doesn't really cut it.

I don't think there's enough time left with the show for Emil to betray Clark, so I wouldn't worry about that. And I just don't think the show writers realize how it comes across when all of Clark's "friends" do dubious things behind his back. Seems to me that the writers have a very ends-justifies-the-means attitude, and as long as there's a positive result to what they do, then it doesn't matter that its wrong of them to have done it behind Clark's back. They did the same thing last season with Chloe and Oliver.

I'll keep commenting until the show is done. Whether thats a good thing, or not, is a matter of opinion, I guess. LOL

Clark and Lois are very sweet and cute. They're like a fuzzy puppy, or a comfy soft robe. But fire and spark and passion? Yeah, not so much.

Clark and Tess do have great chemistry, but I'm not sure where they could've fit in any sort of thing for them. I've always said that in an AU, Cless would be smoking hot. And they kinda were. But for our SV world? It would never have made any sense.
shopgirl318
Apr. 24th, 2011 01:41 am (UTC)
That is definitly a good thing. Your reviews always gives me something more to think about after the episodes. I am not as invested as I was last season maybe because the show is ending or the dissapointment is taking over but SV fan reviews are awesome and they leave me pumped over the good instead of focusing on the bad.

AU Cless is hot period but so is Lois-Tess and I usually don't do the female ships but Clark and Lois have great chemistry with Tess. It doesn't make any sense but is it bad that I was rooting for AU!Evil!Clark and Tess? I wonder if the writers try fuel those Clex fan flames with the Cless sometimes.

“I don't think there's enough time left with the show for Emil to betray Clark, so I wouldn't worry about that. And I just don't think the show writers realize how it comes across when all of Clark's "friends" do dubious things behind his back. Seems to me that the writers have a very ends-justifies-the-means attitude, and as long as there's a positive result to what they do, then it doesn't matter that its wrong of them to have done it behind Clark's back. They did the same thing last season with Chloe and Oliver”

This. I read my statement again and I am looking at betrayel in black/white too much with this show and characters. You are definitly right as long as something positive comes out of it like getting Clark back from the AU! ep but that doesn't necesarily make it right but I get why they saved it for emergencies only kind of thing. With CO I didn't get that which I think it went from protecting Clark to spiraling out of control and their views had gotten less and less coherent since they already had an agenda anyway in the first place.

I wish the SV writers would quit with the whole the ends justifies the means crap because watching SV, Buffy, Angel and SPN over the years makes me realize that it doesn't. Every little action good or bad has a consequence. It what you take from those is what really matter. I like to pretend that SV is really saying this sometimes.

LOL@ you J for comparing CL to a big, soft fluffy bunny. In the infamous words of Cordelia on Angel "Like a puppy with fangs!" CL still have their spark but the writers only bring it out as a plot device. In fact Lois role in season 10 has bugged me trying to turn the girl into just the love interest when she is clearly not. It like they are doing the opposote of her like Chloe and Lana, they give those 2 so many roles that didn't fit
only to have shoehorned them in weird corners.
brijeana
Apr. 24th, 2011 04:58 am (UTC)
Poor Shelby
Anyone think we might hear about the fate of Shelby? Nah, me either.

LOL!

I loved this episode. IMO it was everything Luthor was not. Yeah it really doesn't add much to the story arc of the season... but for that reason alone I don't feel that it was a complete waste of time.

I did see glimmers of humanity in Clark Luthor so that the idea of redemption for him isn't so... hard to believe. Plausibly it would take a lot more than a speech from Clark but... hahaha! This is Smallville. So implausible things that make Clark seem like Superman are a step WAY up IMO.

Tess/Emil was one of my fave scenes in the episode, along with Tess and CL at dinner and CL and Lois in the Metropolis apartment. Tom Welling did an amazing job. All of the cast was pretty great in fact.

I was pleasantly surprised.

Oh and I did think about Chloe and Oliver during this episode. Emil and Tess hid the crystal from Clark or mirror box - whatever. Now I'm REALLY worried about what they are going to do with the Gold Kryptonite. They are much more likeable right now IMO than Chloe and Oliver were in Season 9 but still. I feel the friendship between them more than the romance as well.

Enjoyed your thoughts.
jeannev
Apr. 24th, 2011 05:05 am (UTC)
Re: Poor Shelby
There are things I liked better about Luthor. And things I liked better about Kent. But I do think Kent might've been the better episode overall, mostly due to the writing for Clark.

I just wish they had been a little bit more overt with those glimmers of humanity in CL. If you want to sell that ending for him, I think you might have needed to toss a few more breadcrumbs along the way. And it really wouldn't have been too difficult to achieve. I guess they figure since they didn't show him killing anyone, that was good enough.

I have to believe that the Gold Kryptonite is going to come back in some sort of significant way. Should be interesting to see how.

And I always enjoy reading your thoughts too :)
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