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Smallville: Bizarro

I will admit, I did not have a lot of enthusiasm going into tonight. But that was before watching, because MY SHOW IS BACK!!!!!!!!!!



This episode made me remember why I love EVERY SINGLE CHARACTER on this show.

CLARK:

Oh, Clark! First the gratuitous: everytime Clark takes his shirt off an angel gets its wings --or sorry, that was just the fluttering of fangirls hearts. But I'm always happy when the top requirement of mahaliem's wishlist gets fulfilled. Plus, I seem to recall someone's SV wishlist including wanting Clark to do something heroic and rescue innocent bystanders, and he not only rescued the cute kid and his dad but he used his brain for once and figured out that he, you know, has powers other than superstrength.

More seriously, though, Clark was awesome in the episode: heroic, and holding it together even when he was grieving both Lana and (briefly) Chloe. I also thought he did a really good job, for once, of stringing together believable lies to Lois (though I kind of thought he ought to have warned Lois about Bizarro). I also loved how he is acknowledging both to himself and to his primary interlocutors that humanity can be both his strength and his vulnerability. I particularly liked his final scene with Martian Manhunter (Martian Manhunter for the win! I was so glad not to be spoiled about that, and so excited that he showed up) and his final scene with Chloe.

CHLOE:
To start again with the shallowness: I LOVED her hair. And I thought she looked adorable in nothing but a lab coat. I really loved two things about her plotline: first, the role reversal between her and Clark is kind of interesting. I loved that final scene where he's trying to get her to talk for a change, and she's not quite ready to cope with her new powers. Second, I love that *she* was the one who was most visibly distraught at Lana's "death," and that she was actually watching home movies of her on her laptop. Chlana lives!!!

LANA:

HA HA!! I knew you faked your own death! Though if you're going to borrow Syndney Bristow's wig, you might as well go for the pink one, I think.

LOIS:
She really rocked in this episode, I thought. I love how completely fierce she was in her desire first to save Chloe and later not to just sit around waiting but to investigate, since that's something she can do that might actually help. But I think what I loved the most was when she forgave Clark for grabbing her butt and came up with a plausible explanation for his Bizarro behavior--a weird response to grief over Lana's death. I laughed so hard when she forgave and then threatened him.

LEX:
Wow, talk about callbacks to the beginning. I *love* the parallel between the pilot and Kara's rescue of Lex, and the way they concretized for Kara-Lex what fanon had long ago decided about Clark, that Lex saw this as an angelic rescue. And I love the fact that Lex, once again, sees this as the possibility for a new start--maybe only because he's traumatized by Lana's death, but it still really worked for me.

I also loved Bizarro tempting him with what he really wants--Clark on his side--on how he is quite tempted by it but is determined not to be manipulated by him. I actually thought it was a really nice callback to/reversal of the Zod/Clark interactions in last season's premiere.

And speaking of callbacks: weren't Bizarro and Clark fighting, at first, in the very same patch of forest Clark and Zod fought in? Was that intentional, do you think, or just a consequence of the fact that there are a limited number of forest locations to film in in Vancouver? I also wondered if Bizarro checking himself out, shirtless, in the mirror in the Fortress was a callback to Lionel doing the same thing in Clark's body back in season 4.

Edited to add: I forgot one more callback: Lex walking to his cell in handcuffs was a total callback to the pimp walk he did in, um, I forget the episode but I'm sure everyone will remind me, the one where he's in the black suit walking past all the cells with the hands reaching out to him? I loved how he was in the same suit and basically the same set but here it was the total opposite of a power walk.

TW really knocked it out of the park as Bizarro, I thought. I loved how he completely changed his vocal register, and how wonderfully wicked Bizarro was. When he killed that guy with his heat vision, I wondered if they were setting up a scenario where every time Clark saved someone with one of his powers, Bizarro would kill someone with the same power. That would have been a kind of interesting plot twist, if they had kept Bizarro around for more than one episode. Oh well.

Still, overall I really loved this episode a lot, and I'm totally looking forward to seeing what they do with Kara.

Comments

( 32 comments — Leave a comment )
butterfly
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:23 am (UTC)
I agree so much with everything you just said. Amazing episode! Yay for Smallville knocking it out of the park!
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:39 am (UTC)
Yay!! It was definitely a great start to the season.
kantayra
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:29 am (UTC)
Endless slashy Clex subtext always equals win. Now, if only the SV writers will continue to remember this. :P *bounces all over this ep*
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:40 am (UTC)
Yeah, no kidding! (See, now what Lex has to do is figure out how to keep Bizarro chained in a very sunny cage....)
kantayra
Sep. 28th, 2007 09:02 pm (UTC)
Ack! Stop it! You'll make me want to write Lex/Bizarro pr0n, and that's just wrong. :P
norwich36
Sep. 29th, 2007 12:50 am (UTC)
How can it be wrong when it feels so right? C'mon, if Lex can't get it from Clark, you know he needs his substitutes.
serenography
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:46 am (UTC)
There were a LOT of recalls in this ep. The Lex pimp walk was one that I noticed as well.

I'm trying to figure out what Lex was up to with the missing "model 503" that he asked his lawyer about. I have a suspicion, but it borders spoiler territory, so I'll just sit tight and wait for them to explain further.

It has been pointed out (amusingly) that Lana would have blended in even better without a blond wig since she's hiding in China. But the wig was WAY cooler.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 01:56 pm (UTC)
It has been pointed out (amusingly) that Lana would have blended in even better without a blond wig since she's hiding in China.

I know, right? She could have just cut her hair or something (though I know that KK is contractually forbidden to do so).

Model 503--hmm. Well, I'll be interested to see what they do with that.
mahaliem
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:58 am (UTC)
But I'm always happy when the top requirement of mahaliem's wishlist gets fulfilled.

Yes!!!!! *bounces with happiness*

The entire cast looked so amazing. I even commented to my son about how much I liked Chloe's hair. TW did such a great job, too!

And I'm becoming such a Lois/Clark shipper.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 01:59 pm (UTC)
I love how they manage to keep sticking in the Clois moments--Bizarro grabbing her ass was priceless.

And I think the producers keep putting in shirtless Clark just for you.
(Deleted comment)
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 02:09 pm (UTC)
Re: part I
OTOH, if there was ever a time for the characters to wallow re: Lana, this was pretty much it, so I had some cognitive dissonance with how truncated the moments of Clark and Chloe mourning were.

That's a good point. I suspect they're going to be stretching out Lana's death for a couple episodes (though I am unspoiled, so I could be wrong), so maybe they're going to do more with this later?

I guess what I'm saying is that Clark probably was lying, but the reason the lie was effective is because the explanation he put forth really was plausible given how out-there Lex's experiments are.

Oh, sure. And like you said, he doesn't know for sure it's Chloe's meteor power kicking in. But he also did a fairly convincing explanation oh how he managed to get to Lois in the tunnels--I'm just happy if he's getting better at coming up with convincing explanations of his powers, since he really needs them.

I totally thought of you during that part of the scene. I was like, "Oh, Nora's going to love this!"
*Bounces* It did make me very happy. But even without the Chlana interpretation, I like the fact that they're not ignoring the fact that the Chloe-Lana friendship was pretty central to last season's storyline. Continuity! It's always a welcome surprise on this show.

Why, by wearing a killer red dress and a blonde Louise Brooks wig, that's how!! I love that even on the run, Lana's stylin' and profilin'. *pinches her cheeks* *is v. v. proud of her*

For some reason this made me picture Lana writing a fashion advice column for women on the run. :-)
(Deleted comment)
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 03:59 pm (UTC)
Re: part II
So I was very pleasantly surprised with how it managed to be call-back and homage without feeling like cheap rip-off, if that makes sense. It was a true parallel instead of just storytelling laziness.

Yes, I agree--though I have to say I was predisposed to like it, because I know there's some Lex/Kara stuff in comics canon, which to me always just seems like sideways Clex anyway, just as I have always read part of Lex's desire for Lana as being about Clark.

And yeah, I agree with you about the slashy subtext of the doppelgangers! Though I also liked the fact that the show acknowledged that Lex is grieving for Lana--it may not have spent a lot of time on that, but I did really like that scene with Lex staring at his wedding ring.
clari_clyde
Sep. 28th, 2007 08:32 am (UTC)
Short comments or I will pass out on the laptop at this time of night.

Chloe: Being buried alive is one of my fears so seeing her wake up like that nearly gave me panic attacks. Damn girl, don’t scare me like that!

Lois: Only she can infuse genuine forgiveness with a threat. This makes me so look forward to the spoilers I’ve read about her and Lex.

Lana: *waves arms* SHE’S DOING IT WRONG, SHE’S DRAWING TOO MUCH ATTENTION TO HERSELF!!! If the goal is hiding, she’s so going to be found and the better way to go about it was to use a darker hair color and clothes that would be considered casual for the surrounding — brunette or darkest auburn, heels, different colors of make-up and a good schooling in contouring techniques to give her face of the illusion of looking rounder/narrower than it really is, etc — I should fanwank that with, well Lana wouldn’t know that most James Bonds have been too tall and way too attractive to be MI5 field agents and that MI6 doesn’t exist but as a Luther it should be common knowledge to her, damn it.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 04:01 pm (UTC)
Being buried alive is one of my fears so seeing her wake up like that nearly gave me panic attacks. Damn girl, don’t scare me like that!

I was just surprised there was no one in the hospital morgue in the middle of the day. WTF?

I loved Lois like burning in this episode. And I basically agree with you about Lana, but I loved LaT's comments about her new look upthread.
clari_clyde
Sep. 29th, 2007 02:36 am (UTC)
I was just surprised there was no one in the hospital morgue in the middle of the day. WTF?

I guess that with all the meteor-infected in town, the hospital staff know that people will just recover from their injuries. It’s only when someone goes on a rampage that they have to up the personnel at ER and ICU and the morgue.



And I basically agree with you about Lana, but I loved LaT's comments about her new look upthread.

Oh, I see now. Hee! Yes, I forget, she does have the Luthor name now and with it all the inappropriate bling that the Luthor name deserves. Yes, even while on the run from the Luthor name.
bagheera_san
Sep. 28th, 2007 04:24 pm (UTC)
weren't Bizarro and Clark fighting, at first, in the very same patch of forest Clark and Zod fought in?
Not only that, they did the same rock smashing trick, too. So uncreative!

Chlana lives!!!
Yes! I was actually really sad about Lana's "death" in that moment. Well, sorry for Chloe, anyways. I'm not sure how I feel about Lana framing Lex (if she did it) but I'm angry at her for hurting Chloe and Clark this way.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:22 pm (UTC)
Not only that, they did the same rock smashing trick, too. So uncreative!

No, no, see that was HOMAGE. Very different than a lack of new ideas.

Yes! I was actually really sad about Lana's "death" in that moment. Well, sorry for Chloe, anyways. I'm not sure how I feel about Lana framing Lex (if she did it) but I'm angry at her for hurting Chloe and Clark this way.

Really? I guess considering the fact that Chloe herself faked her death before to escape from a similar situation, and Clark has vanished pretty much every single summer, makes me feel like Lana should get a pass on faking her death to get out of a situation that seemed to be escalating into more danger for her. I'm still on the fence about framing Lex, though.



huzzlewhat
Sep. 28th, 2007 04:52 pm (UTC)
This episode made me remember why I love EVERY SINGLE CHARACTER on this show.

It really, really did. They were all firing on all cylinders, and it was wonderful to see.

Plus, I seem to recall someone's SV wishlist including wanting Clark to do something heroic and rescue innocent bystanders...

That was me! Cross one off my list.

More seriously, though, Clark was awesome in the episode: heroic, and holding it together even when he was grieving both Lana and (briefly) Chloe.

He really was wonderful, and adult, and heroic.

if you're going to borrow Syndney Bristow's wig, you might as well go for the pink one, I think.

I would have liked to see her in a red wig, as a nod to comics canon. Ah well.

She really rocked in this episode, I thought. I love how completely fierce she was

"Fierce" is exactly the word I used to describe her. It fits her perfectly.

Edited to add: I forgot one more callback: Lex walking to his cell in handcuffs was a total callback to the pimp walk he did in, um, I forget the episode but I'm sure everyone will remind me, the one where he's in the black suit walking past all the cells with the hands reaching out to him? I loved how he was in the same suit and basically the same set but here it was the total opposite of a power walk.

Oh, the pimp walk! How could I have forgotten the pimp walk parallel!

TW really knocked it out of the park as Bizarro, I thought.

He did such a good job in this ep. I loved the completely different body language between the two in the final confrontation before they started the actual fight with Clark all tense, the little aborted motions forward, and Bizarro all loose, the little teasing hand motions... two completely different people.

norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 10:42 pm (UTC)
That was me! Cross one off my list.

I probably even have that in a tab open somewhere on my home computer to comment on. Curses work for being so busy when all I want to do is watch tv and talk to people about it</strike>.

He did such a good job in this ep. I loved the completely different body language between the two in the final confrontation before they started the actual fight with Clark all tense, the little aborted motions forward, and Bizarro all loose, the little teasing hand motions... two completely different people.

Yeah, he was definitely fantastic in this ep. *Pets TW* Oh Tommy, you've grown so much since season 1!
suex
Sep. 28th, 2007 05:48 pm (UTC)
Yay! Smallville's back and I get to read all of these wonderful LJ reviews. You guys are the best at reviewing.

I loved this episode. Every element came together so well. Was it just me or was the dialogue in this episode better than anything that I've seen on Smallville before? Maybe its just the actors getting better with some clunky dialogue, however I think not, all the conversations that took place just seemed to real.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 10:44 pm (UTC)
Thanks! But really all I did this week is squee. latxcvi, huzzlewhat, and bop_radar all have very nuanced and insightful analyses this week, if you're looking for intelligent discussion.

I have to say, I didn't notice the dialogue particularly this week, but maybe that's a good thing?
mskatej
Sep. 28th, 2007 07:30 pm (UTC)
Though if you're going to borrow Syndney Bristow's wig, you might as well go for the pink one, I think.

HAHAHA. I loved the wig.

I have nothing to add to your review. Just YAY. SHOW BACK.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 10:46 pm (UTC)
*Twirls you around and around* And I'm glad you liked the wig line.

I mean, I was going to like it regardless--when it comes to SV I am SO easy--but it's really fun that other people loved it too.
prim_rose_etta
Sep. 28th, 2007 08:11 pm (UTC)
I hope Bizarro comes back - i thought they were going to have Clark drop him into the Sun, but then remembered he's still a non-flyer [boo!] - so he could return(?)
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 10:47 pm (UTC)
I think Martian Manhunter is the one who took him up? And maybe just whirled him into space, since I don't think he has special powers of invulnerability, does he? {My comics canon has woeful gaps in it). But yeah, I kind of hope he comes back too.
obursts
Sep. 28th, 2007 08:46 pm (UTC)
Much agreement with your post. I so loved Tom in this episode and could not be more... proud of Clark. I truly hope the writers keep up with this development.
norwich36
Sep. 28th, 2007 10:48 pm (UTC)
SuperClark FTW!!!! I really do want to see him mature into Superman this season.
bop_radar
Sep. 29th, 2007 01:48 pm (UTC)
: I forgot one more callback: Lex walking to his cell in handcuffs was a total callback to the pimp walk he did in, um, I forget the episode but I'm sure everyone will remind me, the one where he's in the black suit walking past all the cells with the hands reaching out to him? I loved how he was in the same suit and basically the same set but here it was the total opposite of a power walk.
Yeah, nicely caught! I completely agree. I loved that.

Isn't it amazing how the love comes rushing back the moment Smallville starts up again? Like you, I hadn't managed to rally that much excitement going in. It was partly fatigue, I just didn't have much energy in me. But oh, as soon as I was watching it again I was in my happy place. :D I even rewound the credits three times! *LoL* I did a LOT of rewinding in this first ep--so many great (or funny) moments.

Oh, and yes, I loved the voice work on Bizarro! Forgot to say that!

Ok, I really need to sleep...
norwich36
Sep. 30th, 2007 12:53 am (UTC)
I was a little worried, I have to say, because not only did I have absolutely no enthusiasm about the episode, but lately the small spaces in my brain that are not filled with work have entirely been taken up by that show which must not be named, and I was beginning to fear I had lost my SV love. No worries about that NOW. It's very bright and shiny, that SV love.
bop_radar
Sep. 30th, 2007 12:59 am (UTC)
Ohhhh that was a CLOSE CALL. *frets for you* I'm so glad SV returned to saaaaaaaaave you! ;)
( 32 comments — Leave a comment )

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