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Smallville, Random Rewatching ctd.


My random rewatching of SV continued this week with a rather diverse group of eps ranging from S5-S8. 

Krypto - My kitties were off to the vet for their "operation" (ya know the one), so I was thinking of animals, and decided to pop in this one that introduced us to the Kent family dog.  As much as I love Shelby, and wish he was a more consistent presence on the show (at least mentioned once and a while), this is just not a very good episode at all.  For one thing, the bad guys are lame.  And also, Lois makes me nuts in this episode, but not in a remotely good way.  I think the "Clarkie" thing was OK for one, maybe two segments.  But it got old fast.  And it got annoying even faster.   So, to sum up, dog cute, boy and dog cute, teasing banter not so cute.  And oh yeah, I would be remiss by not mentioning Jane Seymour's hilariously over-the-top Genevieve Teague.  Her scene with Lex is so hammy, all you need is some cheese to make a sandwich out of it.

Combat - This is one of those episodes that has me torn.  Because honestly, Clark being upset over Lana being the motivation for him to go out and catch criminals (and rough them up), and make him so angry he would consider killing is just junk.  Its the sort of plot device that fuels the talk of the detrimental effect Lana has had on Clark's character.  At least from the standpoint of how its handled by the writers.

But then here's the thing....I still enjoy this episode.  The fight is awesome!  Someone needs to explain to me how they do this amazing fight between Clark and Titan, which is filmed well, exciting and choreographed wonderfully, and then we have that bullshit with Doomsday 2 seasons later.  Also, the guy that plays the Fight Club organizer is one of my all-time whack job guest stars.  I'd love to see him, Jane Seymour, and the guy that played Zor-El all in an episode together.  With John Glover.  The scenery chewing would be epic.

Gemini - This is an episode I haven't rewatched all that often.  I forgot how much dialogue there is between Lois and Grant that addresses her hiring at the DP,  how she's NOT geting preferential treatment, and how she's concerned about that possibility.  While I think Lois choosing to get involved with Grant was a stupid writing decision, and did reflect badly on her, I also think the accusation that Lois "slept her way into the DP" or that she got special treatment is a bunch of bullshit not at all supported by the shows canon.  Which, BTW, is the ultimate authority. 

The rest of Gemini is fine, but as an episode, it doesn't excite me.  It touches on a lot of elements that I just don't much enjoy about SV.  Chimmy, Chloe's healing power, Lois and Grant, Lex doing evil things in Offscreensville, Lana doing really dubious things.  I do really enjoy Tom's performance in this ep, and the slow-mo run through the DP, then the jump up the stairwell is a very cool effect.

Fracture - This was an episode I didn't enjoy as much this time around.  I still do like the Clark/Alexander stuff, but really the premise is entirely too WTF for me, and I found myself just annoyed with it this time around.  There's just so many things that should have been written better, and I came away feeling like this episode had an interesting premise, but was lazily executed.   I think, perhaps, the S7 writing strike played a part in how rushed and messy this felt.  And I found myself oddly annoyed on Lana's behalf that she just disappears from this episode when there's no way I can picture Lana just wandering off while the procedure was taking place.  They do something similar to her in Traveler, and it just doesn't seem fair. 

I really don't understand why they even had Chloe get a meteor power if they were going to just get rid of it a season later.  Seems like a waste. 

Prey - I sort of hate this episode.  I hate that Clark's dedication to helping and saving people is depicted as negative or "obsessive".  I hate that the episode exalts Chloe as the though she's the first person to consider helping/saving meteor freaks when we've seen this behavior from Clark several times over the course of the show.  I HATE that Chloe suggests that Clark lacks courage for not stepping forward about himself, and I HATE that Clark apologizes to her at the end, but she can't seem to be bothered to return the courtesy. 

I also don't see how anyone can watch this episode and not admit that Chloe's interest in Davis is not at all normal for "just friendship", and its highly inappropriate for an engaged woman.  Now, I suppose one can use the Brainiac infection excuse, and I can see how that works.  But it would've been nice if the show had defined that a bit better.    I also don't see how anyone can watch this episode and think Davis is a "good guy". 

So, yeah, overall, don't like this episode at all.  Except for the appearance of MM, because Phil Morris completely rocks!

Noir - Such a pretty, pretty episode.  I really wish that SV had more time, and more budget to do this episode, because I think it would've been incredible.  And I think its clear that the actors were having such a good time.  How much they nail it varies for me, and I'm sure everyone has their own opinion on that.  Its totally subjective.  But I don't think anyone can argue with how awesome everyone looks.  Except for some oddly fitting hats.  And Clark coming out of the bathroom, wiping his mouth, then grabbing Lana, spinning her around, and kissing her hard will never not be Hot!

But all that pretty aside, this episode is a jumbled mess.  I still don't fucking know who shot Lana.  Or why the bullet wound magically moved, though I suspect that was just bad continuity ;)  And I was once again stuck by how similar S6 Lana's whole "I'm doing all this stupid shit all to protect Clark" is to S8 Chloe's whole "I'm doing all this stupid shit all to protect Clark".  Talk about unoriginal, and a a big pile of suck the first time they did it. 

I still think the show should've done more Lex/Lois scenes.  There's something about MR & ED's chemistry which intrigues me.  I noticed is again in Gemini and Fracture as well.  Just something very snappy. 

Here's a rather unfortunate factoid regarding the episodes I've just discussed.  Clark says "its all his fault", or takes some sort of blame in every single one but Krypto.  I suppose how can say Bizarro takes the blame in Gemini, though he's playing the role of Clark.  In Combat, its all Clark's fault that Titan and the Phantoms (that should be the name of a band). are here.  In Gemini, its all Clark's fault that Lana had to hide away her spying.  In Fracture, its all Clark's fault that Kara doesn't have her memories.  In Prey, its all Clark's fault that he wasn't able to save the people at the Ace of Clubs in time.  In Noir, its all Clark's fault that Lana was shot and he wasn't looking after her.

God show, get off of it already!

Comments

( 8 comments )
jlvsclrk
Aug. 15th, 2009 06:35 am (UTC)
Not having rewatched Fracture recently, I don't know if I'd see it differently now. I know the whole set up was utterly ridiculous, but I did love the Clark / Alexander scenes so much. But even they get tainted by remembering his attitude a few episodes later about Luthors only helping when there's something in it for them - granted he said it after Lionel trapped him in a kryptonite cage so a little bitterness can perhaps be forgiven.

Totally agree about the other episodes. Krypto was one of those episodes I kept seeing on repeats back in 2005 I guess, just when my Smallville watching was starting to turn to obsession. Season 4 was so darned uneven, and virtually every scene with Lana made me want to scream (except Spirit strangley).
jeannev
Aug. 16th, 2009 04:15 am (UTC)
Well, thats sort of the thing with the Clark/Alexander stuff. It didn't really carry on. It happened in an episode, and it was cute and nice, and then it was sort of forgotten, at least in relation to Clark. Which makes it seem sort of pointless.

I was actually surprised when I did a S4 rewatch, and clocked the screentime totals, at how little of Lana there actually is in S4. I know there's this impression that her and the witch story dominated, but it really didn't.
(Deleted comment)
jeannev
Aug. 16th, 2009 04:19 am (UTC)
Truth be told, I'm often terribly confused with how they used Lois from her introduction to present day. I understand that there were restrictions in place, but still...

Personally, I don't care if someone likes or dislikes a character. But when you make shit up to dislike and discredit a character, it just feels sort of desperate to me. For me, I think show canon has to trump all. Whether one likes what it is, or not.

I think Clark constantly taking the blame is just pure writer laziness more then anything else.
(Deleted comment)
jeannev
Aug. 16th, 2009 04:21 am (UTC)
Well, when your doing a random rewatch, you get the good with the bad, LOL

I understand how fandom can kill an episode, or a character, or a relationship for you. I'm really struggling with that myself right now.

I really hope that Clark isn't going around blaming himself for everything in S9, but to be honest, I think he will. I think thats really all these writers know in regards to writing for him. Its one-note, and lazy, but thats how they roll.
goodvibe
Aug. 16th, 2009 10:20 am (UTC)
//Here's a rather unfortunate factoid regarding the episodes I've just discussed. Clark says "its all his fault", or takes some sort of blame in every single one but Krypto.//

Why am I not surprised? Sadly, this is a trend I don't see disappearing altogether anytime soon. It's SV' main modus operandi after all, to have Clark blame himself for everything.

That's quite a diverse group of eps there, heh. I have to say, I hated 'Krypto.' Shelby was adorable and simley!Clark is always a treat to watch, but unfortunately these aspects still weren't enough of a saving grace, for me. The 'humor' in this one just plain grates. Lois is irritating. The Clois is annoying, and the ep and its plot is overall just way too boring to hold my interest at all.

I couldn't agree more with you about 'Combat' though. I remember raving about the fight scene when it aired and even on subsequent viewings, it holds up tremendously. It's exciting and primal, almost. That fight alone, makes this ep for me, but there's other stuff I like too, such as Lois investigating, and the hilariously OTT guest star. Plus I think KK did a really great job in this ep. I think, acting wise, S6 was a strong year for her.

ITA that the 'Lois slept her way into the DP' argument (if I can even call it that) is completely seeped in desperation. There's one thing to hate that storyline, think it reflected ill on Lois (I do too) but it's a whole other matter to actually make up your own canon to suit your means. It's stuff like this that often makes me wonder if we're all watching the same show.

I haven't rewatched 'Fracture', but I remember really liking it when it aired. I loved the Clark/Alexander interaction and the final Clex scene. But you're right - in retrospect one's opinion of certain eps often alters. I did a rewatch of the series during S7 and I recall my differences in perception wrt several plotlines, characters, eps, etc.

Complete agreement on 'Prey.' This ep infuriates me on a lot of levels and was the beginning of my utter frustration with Chloe last season.

Finally, 'Noir', which as you say, how can you not love for the mass amounts of Pretty that it brings. I think JG, AM and TW did a good, in-character job, and ED sang very capably. KK, MR and AA seemed moreorless the same to me. But the ep is otherwise a bit of a jumbled mess. But one I can nevertheless enjoy.

//I still think the show should've done more Lex/Lois scenes. There's something about MR & ED's chemistry which intrigues me. I noticed is again in Gemini and Fracture as well. Just something very snappy.//

Agreed. And snappy is exactly the word I'd use. I remember noticing their chemistry way back in 'Lucy' too, and 'Gemini' and 'Fracture' are good examples too. I'm not sure why these two never shared more scenes. Possibly Lex being caught up in the Clexana, perhaps?

//I'd love to see him, Jane Seymour, and the guy that played Zor-El all in an episode together. With John Glover. The scenery chewing would be epic.//

I'd pay to see this, heh.
jeannev
Aug. 16th, 2009 11:31 pm (UTC)
It's SV' main modus operandi after all, to have Clark blame himself for everything.


And the really sad thing is that I'm not at all sure that the writers don't actually think everything is Clark's fault.

KK did do a fine job in Combat. Some of the eps in the back half of S6 are among her finest performances. She's downright chilling in Nemesis, which is one of the reasons I really enjoy that episode.

There's one thing to hate that storyline, think it reflected ill on Lois (I do too) but it's a whole other matter to actually make up your own canon to suit your means.

Yes, exactly. And if a character is as horrible as one claims, then you really shouldn't have to make stuff up, or ridiculously embellish, to make the point.

I think Prey was probably the beginning of my frustration with Chloe as well. And I'm not suggesting that she didn't have just cause to be pissed off that Clark went behind her back. But the whole manner in which she conducted herself, and the things she said to him, and her tripping all over herself to coddle Davis...I don't know. It was all the start of a disturbing direction for her in S8. One that I still maintain was a Lana storyline, adjusted for Chloe. And not adjusted enough to make it fly.

I'm pretty sure that I read that there were restrictions in place in regards to Lois/Lex scenes. I don't know why there would be, but DC is fucked up.

shardsofblu
Aug. 20th, 2009 04:39 pm (UTC)
I'd rewatch Combat just for the crazy fight club boss alone. :p

And I was once again stuck by how similar S6 Lana's whole "I'm doing all this stupid shit all to protect Clark" is to S8 Chloe's whole "I'm doing all this stupid shit all to protect Clark". Talk about unoriginal, and a a big pile of suck the first time they did it.

To be honest, all they had to do is just textually acknowledge that these were indeed "stupid shit" and it would be fine with me -- instead of glossing it over, to the point of even painting the characters' actions as heroic.

Great points all around.
( 8 comments )

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