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Post-Echo, Pre-Roulette thinky thoughts


Just checking, but is everyone remembering to vote in theclexfactor 's SV poll?

I'm going to Atlanta this weekend, and I won't be home until sunday night, so there will be a slight delay on the screentime totals for this week. 

Actually, I think its a good thing that I'll be watching Roulette on the computer, since I anticipate a lot of FF'ing.  ;)

Having now had a few days to think about Echo, and also having read a lot of well thought out, and well articulated reviews of the episode, I find myself having to get some of my own thoughts off my chest.  But I'm going to focus on my biggest problem with the episode, and in fact, my biggest problem with SV at the moment.  And thats Oliver and the relationship between Clark and Oliver.  I guess I'll issue a warning that this post isn't at all sympathetic to Oliver, so if that offends you, you may want to skip it.  Its also rather critical of how this reflects on Clark, so ditto to what I just said.

All my mental junk will be going behind the cutType your cut contents here.

So, I find myself definitely on an island here.  Or, mostly on an island anyway. 

I've read lots of very stirring, very heartfelt posts about how Clark's empathy towards Oliver was so inspiring, and how it even made them feel sorry for Oliver, since Clark did.  I've read how people weren't bothered by Clark apologizing, Again!.  And I've definitely read, more then once, about how much this was "Superman". 

Now, granted, I don't read Superman comics, so perhaps I'm no expert.  Perhaps I've created a false perception of Superman in my head.

So, Superman is A-OK with murderers, as long as they feel really, really badly and wallow in self pity?  See, this was a Superman trait I was not aware of.

Lets review....Oliver is a murderer.  Sure, we all know Lex is alive, but that does not change Oliver's intent.  In fact, evidence would suggest that he did blow someone up in that truck, it just wasn't the real Lex.  Oliver's first attempt to murder Lex had him trying to shoot an arrow into the back of Lex's head.  Lets think about this for a minute....our "hero" stood in the shadows, from a safe distance, in no peril himself, and tried to put an arrow through the back of another mans head for, what would've been, a truly gruesome death.  Now, having failed in this attempt, his second attempt (successful, as far as he knows) was to plant a bomb, and then frame a psychopath for his crime.  Completely premeditated.

So, our Oliver Queen is not only a murderer, he's a cowardly murderer without the guts to face his victim, face-to-face.

Now, don't get me wrong.  I've never been someone who thought Lex was a saint, or a misunderstood woobie.  He did bad shit.  He did evil, heinous crap to people.  He turned into a very bad guy.  And I want the bad guys to go down.  I just don't want our heroes to shoot them in the back, or blow them up.  Am I being unreasonable?  I mean, do Superman and the other heroes in the comics go around taking out the criminals, Punisher-style? 

Now, of course I've ranted at length about what Oliver did to Clark in Doomsday.  Much to my surprise, and dismay, I've also found this act largely dismissed and hand-waved away in SV fandom.  For reasons I'm not entirely clear on, apparently you can do really nasty crap to Clark, and its easily forgiven and forgotten.  I don't entirely get that.  But, anyway, for me, this is just more reasons for me to have problems with the Oliver character. 

Lets review again....Oliver crafted an arrow out of kryptonite.  Something he knows can subdue Clark, and cause him great pain.  In fact, something that can kill him.  He then decides that he will lure Clark out into the open by telling him they found Davis and Chloe.  Then he will shoot Clark in the back with the arrow that causes him great pain (and Oh, can actually kill him), then leave him there, bleeding, completely vulnerable, then walk over, look down on him in contempt, claim this is just to "get his ego out of the way", then leave him there.  And go fuck everything up, but we'll leave that part off.  Not posting someone there to watch over him, or ensure that he wouldn't be injured, or, in the case that Oliver might know jack shit about what can, and can't, kill Clark, have someone there to remove the arrow in an emergency, or if Clark was in real distress.  Wasn't it Oliver that was bitching out Zatanna in Hex for leaving him out in the open, vulnerable?  I guess it only counts for him. 

So, now that we've gone over the "hero" that is our Oliver Queen, lets talk about Clark for a second.  Dealing with the latter Oliver stuff first, the former later (since thats really the biggie).  Is it OK that Clark just got over what Oliver did to him in Doomsday?  I guess.  I think it gives Clark a doormat quality that I'm not especially fond of, but I guess its OK.  Its certainly not the first time Clark has let someone walk all over him.  But, do I think Clark should be able to trust him and work with him again after this incident?  Hell To The No!  Because really, how do you establish trust with someone who takes your greatest vulnerability, and uses it against you when you disagree?  And if you can just trust them again so easily, doesn't that call ones judgement into question a bit?  I think  it does.  So, what happens next time Clark and Oliver are at odds as to how to solve a problem? 

But thats a minor detail when you are looking at the bigger picture of what Oliver has done.  And to me, Superman, as I understand the character, isn't just Okey-Dokey with a murderer because they feel really, really bad about it.  Yes, he can want to help an Oliver who has gone so far off the path.  He can show him compassion, and urge him to get help, and to turn himself in.  I'm all fine with that, because that is Superman, as I understand him.  But with whats happened?  With the circumstances as showed to us in HD (where available)?  Should Clark really ever be a buddy and ally to Oliver again?  And if he is, which I have no doubt he will be, then how does this reflect on our Clark?

And its not as if this is even the first instance of SV doing something like this, I know.  Surely the situation with Lionel allied with Clark was always a very dubious situation.  So, there is a precedence of it with SV.  But I guess the difference for me, at least, is that Lionel was never a "hero", and in the end, he got his comeuppance, and no justice.  It makes a difference.

I do also want to make the point that when Clark was so willing to forgive Lana in S7 for going down a dark path, he got torn to shreds.  And as far as I remember, Lana wasn't trying to shoot anyone in the back of the head.  But Clark was a wimp, or a pussy, or he was just stupid and useless because it was Lana.  Any number of things.  But with Oliver?  Apparently he's Superman.  I'm confused..

And I guess, in the end, I know I'm supposed to just hand wave this all away, and just think "But Ollie is so cute, and he has a nice chest", or something along those lines.  Since I seem to be one of the few SV viewers that doesn't think its perfectly OK for Oliver to just be forgiven and embraced back into the bosom of herohood with a contrite "My Bad!", I guess I'm just missing something.   I won't go deep into spoilers, but they certainly indicate that Oliver's wallowing is going to have a happy, hopeful ending for him.  And Clark will just smile and go along.  And this is Clark being "Superman"?  For me, not so much.  For me, I think Superman, as I perceive him would've taken a much firmer stand, and stood up for himself a bit more.  Perhaps I simply have no understanding of the character.  *shrugs*

I guess I know that this is just the way SV rolls.  I think, for me, I just don't have the tolerance for it I once did.  And it makes me incredibly sad, because I've waited, and watched this show for so long, to see Clark take his final steps towards Superman, and be a proactive hero, and be strong and confident, and, well, this is kind of ruining it for me.  :(

Now, a little bit of Spoiler stuff for Roulette follows, so look away if you are of the Unspoiler variety


I warned you..

Still looking?

OK....

I guess I'm sort of amused, though not in a good way, that Echo wasn't even Oliver's rock bottom.  That even after being confronted with his past sins, and even after contemplating suicide (and really Oliver, just jump off a building if you're suicidal), and even after being shown such compassion by Clark, he's STILL going to have another week of being a wallowing dickweed.  Yeah, I really feel that sympathy dial being racheted up for me.  How about all of you?

And I know for sure.  FOR SURE.  That if Clark was on this sort of downward slide?  People would be tearing him a new asshole. 

I was going to say more about Roulette, but I should probably wait until I see it...at least the stuff I don't FF through, anyway.

 

Comments

( 50 comments — Leave a comment )
serenography
Oct. 21st, 2009 05:18 am (UTC)
Totally enjoyed reading your thoughts about Ollie and Clark. I agree with much of what you say too.

And yet... I do enjoy Ollie.


So, now that we've gone over the "hero" that is our Oliver Queen,


For me, this is it. Ollie is NOT the kind of hero that Clark is, and he never will be. I don't have the same expectations of him, not even close. It's the same reason (generally) that I always enjoyed Lex as a character, even when the woobie wore off and all that was left was the murderous shell of Clark's former friend.

Perhaps someone who is more of a comic expert than I am will correct me, but I don't believe that Superman and Green Arrow are exactly best buds in the mythology. Even factoring in SV's own spin on things, I don't believe Clark will ever think of Oliver as he once did, knowing the things he's done. You are right though, it is a bit of a hand-wave for Clark to simply overlook Ollie's having murdered Lex, when he was determined to have the vigilante woman in Vengeance turn herself in for her crimes.

Justin Hartley *is* easy on the eyes, and I do think he does a really good job with Ollie. I love the scenes with Clark and Ollie, even and maybe especially when they are at odds with each other.

You're right, Ollie's a bit of a shit, but I like that contrast to Clark that he brings to the show. However I do agree that at this point his downward spiral is being given a bit too much airtime though. I'd like to see Clark's perspective on the situation be more in the forefront.

Also, you are correct about the technical dangers of Ollie shooting Clark with a Kryptonite arrow, but I guess I do hand-wave that as knowing full-well that Ollie had no intentions of seriously hurting, let alone killing, Clark. It was the betrayal and lack of trust that bothered me more than the actual arrow.

shardsofblu
Oct. 21st, 2009 05:50 am (UTC)
...but I don't believe that Superman and Green Arrow are exactly best buds in the mythology. Even factoring in SV's own spin on things, I don't believe Clark will ever think of Oliver as he once did, knowing the things he's done.

I agree that Clark & Oliver aren't each other's best friends in the comics (that would be Bruce/Diana and Hal, respectively), but to me there's still a very palpable sense of fundamental respect and genuine friendship between the two. Comics Ollie is indeed very much defined by his unrestrained anger and hotheadedness, and had actually killed twice in the heat of the moment. But it's still a far, far cry from the cold-blooded murderer they've made him in SV, and when they showed him being an absolute wreck in the aftermath, my sympathy for him is pretty much a given already.

Oliver Queen is a hero, and while my emotional investment in his character doesn't reach to the same extent that I have for Clark Kent, it's still just terribly disheartening to come to the position where I just can't differentiate him from someone like Lex anymore.
(no subject) - jeannev - Oct. 21st, 2009 01:38 pm (UTC) - Expand
shardsofblu
Oct. 21st, 2009 05:21 am (UTC)
You're actually spot on with this entire post. I'm one of those who find the Clark/Oliver scenes worked on a certain level, but on the bigger picture itself I still kept feeling there's just something so terribly wrong about it. It's not until I came across latxcvi's response to goodvibe's Echo post a couple days ago that it finally hit me. And copy pasting my own comment at DI very recently to another poster who raised up this issue:

"I agree completely with what you've said about it being at least understandable, if Ollie had killed Lex in the heat of the moment. But that's certainly not how it played out, there's a very considerable amount of time before he made that decision. It couldn't be taken as anything else other than a deliberate, calculated act and that's a non-negotiable aspect for a character who's supposed to be the hero, the good guy. Not to mention the fact that he had also framed someone else for the murder, and on top of that berating Clark for expressing the opposing stance over the whole thing.

I have no use for his pity parties and self-hatred. If he's really sincere about his remorse over Lex's murder, then turning himself in is a no-brainer. He thinks simply by wallowing in his guilt is enough to let him off the hook, and it's not.

I know that other characters have gone scot-free with their crap on this show countless times before including Clark himself, Ollie certainly isn't the first one to do this, but I still just want to put this out there. SV can be all kinds of awesome, but when it veers into these kind of moral and ethical issues, most of the time they just don't give enough care and thought on how it would reflect on the characters themselves, and it bothers me a lot."
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 01:40 pm (UTC)
Yeah, those posters that you mentioned also gave me much food for thought, and helped me to articulate my thoughts better.

SV can be all kinds of awesome, but when it veers into these kind of moral and ethical issues, most of the time they just don't give enough care and thought on how it would reflect on the characters themselves, and it bothers me a lot."

And this is it, in a nutshell. Oliver would be a great central character in his own drama. But his shit blows back on my Clark. And doesn't serve Clark's story well at all. And this is my issue.


jlvsclrk
Oct. 21st, 2009 05:55 am (UTC)
I totally agree even though I'm one of those people who commends Clark for his compassion towards Ollie in Echo. For me though, this SHOULD play out in much the way he as his talking to Plastique last year - she still went to jail for her actions after all. I can't get over how deeply the writers have written themselves into a corner with this whole storyline and the only possible solution is that Lex never really died in the first place and its just an elaborate revenge plot. But still, I don't see any point in Clark working with Ollie - one reason I'm really not looking forward to Society. I have fond dreams that once Ollie gets his sidekick, he'll move to Star City and disappear from the show - I can always dream, can't I?
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 01:44 pm (UTC)
But even though Lex is alive, how much does it really change what Oliver did? Not much, actually. His intent was to murder.

If all this was setting up Oliver to pull himself back up, and then exit the show, it would work. He and Clark leave thing in an uneasy truce, but not as friends and allies. Then one could envision a future where Oliver has worked for years to redeem himself, and he and Clark eventually can work together again. That would all work.

But that isn't what this show is doing. In fact, I'll call it now...I think Oliver will be back in Clark's face about something or the other by the back half of this season. Because if you ever listen to Souders/Peterson talk about Ollie (Peterson, particularly), they LOVE that Oliver talks crap to Clark. Its him "challenging" Clark, or some such nonsense.
tariel22
Oct. 21st, 2009 06:52 am (UTC)
Well, of course you're right. Clark is treating Oliver differently, and Oliver is getting away with murder. I will admit I cling to my knowledge that Lex can't be dead, and my conviction that Oliver blew up a lifeless clone, to make the situation more palatable. If they confirm that Lex is still alive on the show, I'll be okay with Oliver going unpunished, just as he did for the attempted murder in Bride. Oliver's redemption arc isn't over yet, and I'm still waiting to see how it all plays out. At this point I can't imagine a scenario where he emerges worthy of Clark's respect and trust, but I do believe in the concept of forgiveness for everyone, and the chance to atone for past sins by becoming a force for good in the world.

I've always believed, and I still do, that Oliver's role on the show should be as a counterpoint to Clark, to give Clark the opportunity to articulate and demonstrate his personal code of conduct, which is often in direct conflict with Oliver's own, and is by definition superior to all others. I can't say it has ever exactly played out like that, but I've seen glimpses, and I'm hopeful for more.

I really wish someone from the show, the producers, the writers, or the actors, could explain to me why the events of Doomsday are for all intents and purposes now forgotten. What did Clark do wrong, besides trust the people who claimed to be his friends and allies? Why doesn't he at least have a conversation with those who betrayed him, and express the hurt and disappointment he must have felt? I've resolved to let it go because Clark has, but it still makes me crazy every time I think about it.

And while we're at it, what about Chloe and Sebastian? Yes, Brainiac had influence over her, but I don't see how killing him advanced Brainiac's agenda in any way, unless it was just to prove he could make Chloe do it. Getting rid of Sebastian only served to protect Clark, and that motivation was all Chloe's. It's different from Oliver's situation because Clark doesn't know, but it's still unfinished business as far as I'm concerned.
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 01:53 pm (UTC)
For me, Lex being alive is just a technicality. It doesn't change Oliver's intent, or the circumstances in which he carried out his plans. The fact that he had a Wil E Coyote moment, and got outsmarted by the Road Runner doesn't really change how I view it.

At this point I can't imagine a scenario where he emerges worthy of Clark's respect and trust, but I do believe in the concept of forgiveness for everyone, and the chance to atone for past sins by becoming a force for good in the world.


I do too. But I do think it needs to be harder then this. I don't think just deciding to mentor a teenage hooker puts you back on the side of the angels. And I do believe that in order to be redeemed, truly redeemed, you need to own up to your sins, and make amends to those you have wronged. Without Oliver even acknowledging how deeply he's wronged Clark, there can be no redemption for me.

I can't say it has ever exactly played out like that, but I've seen glimpses, and I'm hopeful for more.


Thinking about it, I'm not sure I've really seen a glimpse of that since S6's Rage. Since then? I can't really think of another example. And unlike you, I'm not only NOT hopeful for more, I fully expect Oliver to be back to being a dick to Clark by Society.

And while we're at it, what about Chloe and Sebastian?

Thats another example of them taking a character way too far, then hand waving it away. But at least there, Clark doesn't know. So, it doesn't blow back on him. And even if he did know, there is at least the wiggle room of Chloe being mentally compromised. Though I've seen no evidence that Brainiac was controlling her actions, she DID have Brainiac in her head. Its a weak defense, but its at least something. As opposed to Oliver, who has absolutely NO defense at all. Heck, Lex wasn't even targeted on Oliver.
(no subject) - tariel22 - Oct. 22nd, 2009 07:39 am (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jeannev - Oct. 22nd, 2009 01:15 pm (UTC) - Expand
carolandtom
Oct. 21st, 2009 07:58 am (UTC)
You and I are on the same island, together. Even if few people think like we do, I still believe we have enough very good reasons to regard the Oliver character and the Clark-Oliver situation as we do. You expressed it perfectly on this post. I agree with every single word of it. Thanks for writing it!
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 01:56 pm (UTC)
Carol, I couldn't ask for better company on my island. :)

I know so much of viewing, and enjoying, SV involves ignoring a certain amount of what came before. I guess many of us just hit some walls we can't pretend aren't there.

I'm so sorry this has occured for me in a season where I had hoped to really enjoy Clark's proactive heroics. But then again, looking at the spoilers ahead, I'm not sure how much we would be seeing of that anyway.
(no subject) - carolandtom - Oct. 22nd, 2009 04:32 pm (UTC) - Expand
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gildinwen
Oct. 21st, 2009 12:29 pm (UTC)
Canadabear made the point in Goodvibe's journal that Lex was declared dead in "Bulletproof" with him actually being "killed" in "Requiem".
Even if Oliver wanted to turn himself in for killing "Lex", he can't, legally atone for it. I don't think Clark is okay with it either but he's shunned Oliver ( and got shot in the back) He's yelled at him, told him what he did was wrong and....I don't know....what else he can do bar telling Oliver to go back to his city and never return.

Now should Clark hold Oliver accountable for everything he's done? Yeah sure. But when Oliver's at his lowest maybe not and I can't help thinking that Clark is seeing a parallel with Lex, and the fact that in his eyes he gave up too easily.

But I agree it's murky from from an ethical point of view
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 01:59 pm (UTC)
Actually, I think Oliver can still turn himself in, and set the record straight on what happened. I don't think Lex being declared "dead" without a body really prevents that.

...what else he can do bar telling Oliver to go back to his city and never return.


Works for me! :)

But something other then..."You were right, I've been an unattentive friend, I haven't given up on you"...would be really, really nice.
(no subject) - gildinwen - Oct. 21st, 2009 02:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jeannev - Oct. 21st, 2009 02:35 pm (UTC) - Expand
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goodvibe
Oct. 21st, 2009 02:27 pm (UTC)
//Just checking, but is everyone remembering to vote in theclexfactor 's SV poll?//

::nods dilligently:: ;-)

As for the rest of your post - need I say that ITA? I mean, you already know my thoughts on this, but there was something else about this Oliver storyline that I wasn't able to quite put my finger on till Lat articulated it so perfectly in her comments to my Echo review. And then shardsofblu and Steph added to those comments and it was like an epiphany of sorts for me. I realized that not only was I upset with this storyline because of Oliver not acknowledging his murder of Lex, and not apologizing for his fucking leaving Clark for the dead but moreover I was also upset with how this storyline was reflecting on Clark! Him knowing the full details behind what transpired and then not holding Oliver to the same standards as he did Lex or anyone else for that matter - ::bothers:: me.

Now, I agree that that is an overall recurring theme. But I still maintain it's never manifested to this degree before. Let's look at the history. Lana. Was Clark weak in his attitude with her? Yes. Can her actions be compared to those of Oliver'? I'd venture to say no. Lionel. Yes, he was an "ally" of sorts, but it was always an uneasy alliance, despite the couple of glaring instances to the contrary (the soltary hug and thanksgiving, I'm looking at you!). There were never any pretences that Lionel was anthing other than a dubios mofo. Lex. As soon as the rift cemented itself and Clark and Lex found themselves in opposing places with Clark being unable to ignore/condone Lex' actions - Clark reacted! And how. And we all know that he took him to task and rightfully so, IMO. Chloe. Killed Sebastian. But here's the crucial thing. Clark is not aware of this.

Now look at Oliver. He orchestrated a premeditated murder. Clark is aware of this. And yet, he apologizes? Hell No. Look, I know my Supes and my comics. And yes, Clark rarely if ever gives up on people especially those he cares for. But this is not how Supes would go about this. Not giving up on someone means showing them the right way, making them realize the importance of redemption and atonement and ::still:: beibng there for them at the end of the journey. I expect nothing less of this Clark to expect Ollie to turn himself in but still continue to be there for him, having faith in him that he will get better. I'm iinclined to compare this situation to Angel' with Faith in Ats S1. She gave heeself up, but he never abandoned her. Clark wouldn't either.

Ultimately, all superheroes are different. In comics canon, there has been an instance of Oliver killing someone. But these were such completely different circumstances that it wouldn't even be fair to begin to compare. He can be a dark character and him and Supes do come from differing ideologies but I cant see comics Ollie doing what SV!Ollie did or comics!Clark apologizing to him the way SV!Clark did.
goodvibe
Oct. 21st, 2009 02:28 pm (UTC)
//Just checking, but is everyone remembering to vote in theclexfactor 's SV poll?//

::nods dilligently:: ;-)

As for the rest of your post - need I say that ITA? I mean, you already know my thoughts on this, but there was something else about this Oliver storyline that I wasn't able to quite put my finger on till Lat articulated it so perfectly in her comments to my Echo review. And then shardsofblu and Steph added to those comments and it was like an epiphany of sorts for me. I realized that not only was I upset with this storyline because of Oliver not acknowledging his murder of Lex, and not apologizing for his fucking leaving Clark for the dead but moreover I was also upset with how this storyline was reflecting on Clark! Him knowing the full details behind what transpired and then not holding Oliver to the same standards as he did Lex or anyone else for that matter - ::bothers:: me.

Now, I agree that that is an overall recurring theme. But I still maintain it's never manifested to this degree before. Let's look at the history. Lana. Was Clark weak in his attitude with her? Yes. Can her actions be compared to those of Oliver'? I'd venture to say no. Lionel. Yes, he was an "ally" of sorts, but it was always an uneasy alliance, despite the couple of glaring instances to the contrary (the soltary hug and thanksgiving, I'm looking at you!). There were never any pretences that Lionel was anthing other than a dubios mofo. Lex. As soon as the rift cemented itself and Clark and Lex found themselves in opposing places with Clark being unable to ignore/condone Lex' actions - Clark reacted! And how. And we all know that he took him to task and rightfully so, IMO. Chloe. Killed Sebastian. But here's the crucial thing. Clark is not aware of this.

Now look at Oliver. He orchestrated a premeditated murder. Clark is aware of this. And yet, he apologizes? Hell No. Look, I know my Supes and my comics. And yes, Clark rarely if ever gives up on people especially those he cares for. But this is not how Supes would go about this. Not giving up on someone means showing them the right way, making them realize the importance of redemption and atonement and ::still:: beibng there for them at the end of the journey. I expect nothing less of this Clark to expect Ollie to turn himself in but still continue to be there for him, having faith in him that he will get better. I'm iinclined to compare this situation to Angel' with Faith in Ats S1. She gave heeself up, but he never abandoned her. Clark wouldn't either.

Ultimately, all superheroes are different. In comics canon, there has been an instance of Oliver killing someone. But these were such completely different circumstances that it wouldn't even be fair to begin to compare. He can be a dark character and him and Supes do come from differing ideologies but I cant see comics Ollie doing what SV!Ollie did or comics!Clark apologizing to him the way SV!Clark did.
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 02:43 pm (UTC)
As for the rest of your post - need I say that ITA?

Welcome to my Island! Carol is mixing drinks. LOL

Him knowing the full details behind what transpired and then not holding Oliver to the same standards as he did Lex or anyone else for that matter - ::bothers:: me.


Exactly.

Oliver contained, in his own storyline, on his show, might be really entertaining. But Oliver's shit blowing back all over Clark on a young Superman show? Its The Suck!

Now look at Oliver. He orchestrated a premeditated murder. Clark is aware of this. And yet, he apologizes?

Right! Yes! And doesn't just apologize once. He does it again the following week. At some point, this isn't about Clark looking like the bigger man. This is about Clark really, really being off target.

The comparison to Fait is really a good one. And Faith suffered consequences! She went to jail. Just one of the many reasons that SV writers aren't in the same universe as Whedon. And I'm not even a Whedon-ite.

That Clark would want to help Oliver find the right path again? I understand, and can get behind it. That Clark would be so willing to let Oliver just walk away from the stuff he did? Not so much.

canadabear
Oct. 21st, 2009 02:32 pm (UTC)
I sort of discussed how I deal with the Ollie stuff in goodvibe's Echo review post; I don't know if you saw it. But to recap in one sentence: they're not doing anything with Oliver they don't do to everyone else, so I can't get upset about it. I don't like it, but it's something I've come to accept. Doesn't work for everyone, but that's how I cope. :)

As for "Roulette", I don't think this is another Oliver angst moment, to be honest. He's not back in full form (that starts in "Crossfire" next week) but it seems to me he falls into this week's events more by happenstance than anything else. I could be wrong, but that's how I've been reading it.

Not that I care. I'm only interested in "Roulette" for Alia.
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 02:54 pm (UTC)
You are right. This is just a more exaggerated version of things that SV has done before, and yeah, acceptance and moving on is just about the only to deal with it. I get that this is Smallville. I think what I'm finding myself really disagreeing with is the posts that suggest "This is Superman". Well, no, I think this is Smallville, but maybe not so much on the Superman part. I just can't envision Superman being so willing to let murder slide, and in fact, be so apologetic to the murderer. Even one expressing remorse.

Doesn't Roulette find Oliver gambling and drinking? And didn't the sides have him ordering Blowfish sushi, because it might be deadly to eat? I'm pretty sure its more wallowing Oliie this week.

I'd be interested in the Alia stuff more if I thought it would get more then 2 minutes, tops. It seems the Kandorian/Zod stuff is taking a big back seat these days to Oliver, and Lois, and Clois. Thats the big 3. Everything else on SV is just background noise at this point.
(no subject) - serenography - Oct. 21st, 2009 03:24 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - jeannev - Oct. 21st, 2009 03:27 pm (UTC) - Expand
(no subject) - canadabear - Oct. 21st, 2009 09:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
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sunflowercyn10
Oct. 21st, 2009 06:41 pm (UTC)
Great post Valerie. *claps hands* I like how you have reminded us that Oliver is a murderer and fans should not need reminding. I think that if the writers wanted to show what happens when a man with good intentions does a very bad thing what it does to him then they should have written more scenes where Clark and Oliver are debating what he did and that's why he's on a downward spiral. For many episodes since S6 we have heard Oliver lecture Clark about being a hero etc and why don't we get to hear Clark give Oliver some morality speeches? Geez last year how many times did Oliver want Clark to kill Davis? Gah! I can understand that Clark was deeply shocked when he realized in ECHO that is friend was suicidal but the writers should have had clark very loudly tell Oliver that you are having troubles coming to grips with taking a life and you need to come to terms and atone for this. Then Clark could have told him I'll be there for you etc.

BTW...IMO, the only thing that Clark and Ollie share is their deep sadness and guilt over their individual actions that put Jimmy in harms way and led to his death. Clark learned that he can't run away from feelings of loss or detach himself from people who could cause him pain if he lost them and he should have counselled Oliver that he needs to deal with his own demons.
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 07:01 pm (UTC)
Thanks. Boy, it makes me sad that people need to be reminded. Or have just decided not to care. :/

And you point out a huge, fundamental problem....how much have we really seen Clark's POV in all this? Well, honestly, not much. He seemed mildly disturbed when Lana told him about Oliver's murder attempt in Requiem. And at the time, I sort of rationalized that as Clark thinking Lana might have gotten things wrong. So, OK. But now? Now, we should be hearing how this effects Clark. He's not freaking Dr Phil. He's not just there to be Ollie's sounding board, and emotional pillar. This show is supposed to be about him, and where's he's coming from, and how he feels, and what his moral POV is. Where is it in this story? *crickets chirping*

And Clark has ZERO POV in what Oliver, Dinah and Bart did to him in Doomsday. Absolutely ZERO. How can this even be?

Its sort of why I half chuckle, and half shake my head confusingly, when I hear people say this season is more Clark-centric then ever. Really? Because I remember a time on this show when we really got insight into Clark's POV. And I don't just mean who he was attracted to. Now? Not so much. And thats just not Clark-centric in my world.

At this point, I don't even know if Oliver is grieving over Jimmy. I supposed its possible. Not surprisingly, TPTB have handled the impact of Jimmy's death in a schizophrenic manner. We have Chloe, who still seems deep in grief, and then we have Lois, who doesn't seem to have been told.
tjw_jaypat
Oct. 21st, 2009 08:29 pm (UTC)
Completely agree! I haven´t liked the GA character from the beginning, and I despise him now.
jeannev
Oct. 21st, 2009 08:32 pm (UTC)
My journey with the GA character has been up-and-down. I didn't much like our short sojourn into OllieVille in S6, but I was OK with his ep in S7. Then, when it was announced that he was going to be a regualar in S8, I was actually looking forward to it. I thought they might be giving Clark a male buddy. Someone he could confide in, in a way that differed from Chloe. But then Toxic happened, and MOSQUITOS!, and well, it just went downhill from there. I was really hopeful after Odyssey. :(
(no subject) - carolandtom - Oct. 22nd, 2009 04:25 pm (UTC) - Expand
tasabian
Oct. 21st, 2009 11:36 pm (UTC)
I am totally on your island.

Despite the ample charms of Justin Hartley, I think Ollie has been one of SV's worst-conceived characters from the get-go. He shouldn't have been introduced as a kidnapper in "Sneeze". He shouldn't have been retrospectively shown as a cheat and violent bully in "Reunion." And he definitely shouldn't have lectured Clark on how to be a hero several dozen times between S6-8. There has never been a single moment on this show when Clark has been less of a hero than Oliver. He has always held the moral huigh ground.

I know I'm supposed to just hand wave this all away, and just think "But Ollie is so cute, and he has a nice chest", or something along those lines.
That's it exactly! He gets a free ride from plenty of fans because he's a hot, hot man! (And yes, JH is indisputably hot.) In SV fandom, it's the girls who always take the heat - plenty of the Ollie-defenders will tear a ream off Chloe or Lois for the tiniest of faux pas.

Surely the situation with Lionel allied with Clark was always a very dubious situation. So, there is a precedence of it with SV. But I guess the difference for me, at least, is that Lionel was never a "hero", and in the end, he got his comeuppance, and no justice.
While I hated "St Lionel", the show at least took care to showcase his nastier side right up to his death. (The Lex & Lilian abuse flashbacks in "Fracture"; Clark telling Lionel that he destroyed Lex's life in "Traveler."

Oliver crafted an arrow out of kryptonite. Something he knows can subdue Clark, and cause him great pain. In fact, something that can kill him. He then decides that he will lure Clark out into the open by telling him they found Davis and Chloe. Then he will shoot Clark in the back with the arrow that causes him great pain (and Oh, can actually kill him), then leave him there, bleeding, completely vulnerable, then walk over, look down on him in contempt, claim this is just to "get his ego out of the way", then leave him there.
That scene remains for me one of the most disturbing that SV has ever done. It contaminates not just Oliver, but Bart and Dinah. The way poor Clark is lying there, suffering in the street, and then they just walk away, was completely horrifying to me.

Team Toyman!!!!
jeannev
Oct. 22nd, 2009 12:36 am (UTC)
Woo-Hoo, more inhabitants for the island! I'll get some snacks ready. LOL

Like you, I think Oliver is a character that has had problems from the get-go. And I think my hackles were raised that much more when the belittling of Clark began, and then we got the, now expected, cheering from the SV fandom. Because, ya know, Clark deserves that shit. Or so I hear. Often.

I know I've often thought back to Sneeze, and really wondered how what Oliver did in that episode was ever OK. An innocent man died, Lex and Lana would've been dead if not for Clark. And why? Because Oliver thought he was entitled to handle things his way, and because he hired people who were crazy and out-of-control. And here's our new hero folks. He's swell!

That scene remains for me one of the most disturbing that SV has ever done. It contaminates not just Oliver, but Bart and Dinah. The way poor Clark is lying there, suffering in the street, and then they just walk away, was completely horrifying to me.

Me too. The way this scene is so easily dismissed makes me want to scream in frustration.

Count me on Team Toyman as well!!
la_belle_isa
Oct. 22nd, 2009 12:27 am (UTC)
Huge rant ahead!
ITA with your post!
//And Clark has ZERO POV in what Oliver, Dinah and Bart did to him in Doomsday. Absolutely ZERO. How can this even be?

Its sort of why I half chuckle, and half shake my head confusingly, when I hear people say this season is more Clark-centric then ever. Really? Because I remember a time on this show when we really got insight into Clark's POV. And I don't just mean who he was attracted to. Now? Not so much. And thats just not Clark-centric in my world.//
And I'm just tired of all the rationalizations.
He has less screentime? Oh, but I could feel his presence and quality is better then quantity!
Too much clois? But Lois makes him more heroic than ever!
Oliver is front and center? Clark is such a good friend to listen to him whine while he stays in the background.
Roulette will likely be Clark-lite? The justification is ready: Oh but see, Tom was supposed to direct Crossfire, but it didn't happen so... How do people know that? Well, it's a secret. But you gotta believe it.
For me, it all comes down to this: Clark is being benched on his own show and could we please stfu because really, Clark is all heroic in his corner, swooshing in to save the day once per episode, so that should be enough.
And the ultimate argument: Tom is happy, therefore his fans have no right to complain. Well, I'm happy that he is, but I watch for Clark and right now, I feel that Tom pulled a "bait and switch". I'm sorry, but for me, no one can replace Clark.

jeannev
Oct. 22nd, 2009 12:46 am (UTC)
Welcome to my island! LOL

I feel really frustrated with the rationalizations. I mean, don't get me wrong. I understand that everyone sees things their own way. I just get frustrated because I can't quite find the right words to express my opinion.

Yes, believe it or not, sometimes I can't find the right words. LOL

Oh, but I could feel his presence and quality is better then quantity!


The idea that these things should be mutually exclusive is a head scratcher for me.

But honestly, Clark had tons of screentime in Echo. And much of it was a waste. Because what should've been this really compelling storyline for him was largely focused in the wrong place. And a large chunk of his time was spent standing around at the endlessly long party scene, with JH doing all the Acting!

Too much clois? But Lois makes him more heroic than ever!


Yeah, I've never got that one. Or the one about Chloe making him more a hero, or Lana, or anyone. Honestly, I reject that notion utterly, it doesn't matter who the female is.

I believe that Tom was supposed to direct Crossfire. That explains Roulette for me (though I'm still BURNING over yet another DC character being brought in to be all about Oliver). But it still doesn't explain for me why I'm not getting much POV from Clark, aside from him liking Lois. And it still doesn't explain why the spoilers for the upcoming eps seem so UN-Clark-centric to me. It explains Roulette. I do love it when Clark shows up to save the day, but shouldn't his story be so much more then that?

I also watch SV to see Clark. If the show is going to be Clark-lighter due to Tom's off screen responsibilities, then I think the viewers got screwed in the deal.
(no subject) - carolandtom - Oct. 22nd, 2009 04:23 pm (UTC) - Expand
(Deleted comment)
jeannev
Oct. 24th, 2009 02:01 pm (UTC)
I guess whats even more disappointing to me is how little many viewers seem to care how this effects Clark. Its as if thats completely immaterial. I haven't watched Roulette yet, so I don't want to really comment on it, but going from some of the stuff I've read, I'm once again shocked and disappointed at reaction to it.

I just feel completely out-of-step. But I think I'm far closer to coming from a "Superman" POV. Maybe thats mistake...thinking this show has much to do with that.
(Deleted comment)
shopgirl318
Oct. 24th, 2009 07:05 am (UTC)
Nice post! I have read a few other reviews and alot of people tend to forgive Oliver for that. I thin it is still wrong, and what happened with parts of season 8 when Clark was angry at Oliver when he found out what he did to Lex. The episode was decent still. I can name a few worst episodes. I enjoyed Clois as usual and why is Chloe still on this show? but anywho, I agree with your post.
jeannev
Oct. 24th, 2009 02:03 pm (UTC)
I think Clark's role on this show is just to validate the characters around him. Honestly, I think that might be what its come down to. Except Lex, of course.

I was feeling for Chloe in the first few eps of this season, and I did feel she was being underused. But having heard what goes down in this ep, I don't think this is a character I can give a shit about anymore. Or, at least, I want her and Clark to stay as estranged from each other as possible.
shopgirl318
Oct. 24th, 2009 10:52 pm (UTC)
I agree! They get along better with some distance between them. At the end of the epsiode, Oliver and Clark seemed distant also. I notice that this season with the exception of Lois, he keeps Oliver/Chloe at a distance which he should but I honestly don't see how he can so friendly with them. God knows I couldn't.
(Anonymous)
Oct. 26th, 2009 08:44 pm (UTC)
Oliver already had a life-changing episode with Toxic, why do we need another one with Roulette? Since Roulette didn't interact with Clark, it was both pointless and a waste of time and money to be to bring her in.

As for Chloe, her character has distorted further since the last season and for her to be the one to mastermind something like this makes Roulette look second fiddle. If I were Clark and Dr. Hamilton, I'd keep an eye on both her and Oliver.

This episode sums up the problem of involving Clark into the main storylines. So much was unnecessary and we didn't see Clark talk to Jor-El about the Kandorians or his reaction to it. I have to say that Genevieve Sparling is not too high on Clark and both Progeny and Beast, along with Roulette, are proof of that. The only writers that have done a great job writing Clark are Septien/ Meyer, Bryan Miller, and Jordan Hawley so far.

Also, there was really no reason for Lois to be in this episode. The scenes involving her and Clark watching a movie was there for the sake of being there. Why would Lois need to wash her clothes at the Kent Farm where there could've been a laundry place near the Talon?
Good episode for Oliver, but bad for everything else.
jeannev
Oct. 27th, 2009 01:34 am (UTC)
The funny thing is that I found Oliver's epiphany more believable this season. And he certainly wasn't unredeemable. But apparently they wanted to take it much further, and muck Clark up in it.

Chloe is fucked up in the head. There's just no other way to put it.
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