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I've seen a lot of people debating whether evil!Lex is supposed to represent the Lex of the future or not, and I agree with those people who would hate to see Lex become such a caricature. But I think it's obvious that even AlMiles don't think that to be the case, because it was good!Lex who offered Clark the apple of temptation. (Good grief, could that be more slashy? Lex as Eve and Clark as Adam?) And it's obvious that the real problems Lex will cause in the future actually come from his noble ambitions to save humanity, because a central premise of the show is that no good can ever come of kryptonite. Lex will presumably destroy the world while trying to save it.

Some might read that scene to say that no good can ever come of good!Lex, either; that this is just another example of the craptastic "destiny" being invoked instead of character development. I don't entirely disagree with that, but I'd like to fanwank a bit and say that the real problem is that good!Lex is blind to the dangers of science. (Heck, AlMiles might have even intended this--the apple, after all, represents forbidden knowledge. ) "Dangerous science" might be a little overplayed as a scifi trope, but at least it beats the "even good!Lex is destined for evil" alternative. I'd rather Lex's flaw being a tunnel vision that makes him miss the danger of his experiments than "destiny."

In fact, if I could give AlMiles that much credit, I'd like to think that the whole Lionel arc this season was playing with--and maybe disldging a bit--the whole destiny angle, suggesting Lex will go bad not because it is destined but because he and all the significant people in his life think it is destined--which is a little different. One thing I loved about Onyx, despite its many cheestastic moments, was how it really brought a type of closure to Lionel's story arc that suggested, to me, that they had been deliberately paralleling Lionel and Lex this season (in a much more specific way than in the show as a whole). Let's look at this:

(1) Lionel seemingly goes "good" as a result of Clark saving his life. (And Clark being inside of him--insert requisite slashgoggles).

(2) Everyone in town, with the exception of Clark, questions Lionel's change of heart. This is especially true of his closest family member. Even Clark doubts him sometimes.

(3) The audience itself is actually left in suspense: is Lionel really good, or just faking? Every action is open to a dual-interpretation, and we are all very suspicious. (This, I think, is how Smallville has always reacted to Lex).

(4)Lionel's dark side, whether really gone or simply hidden, is brought back as a result of Lex's worst impulses, in a direct contest with Lex. (And damn--I've been waiting for that fencing rematch since first season! Go evil!Lex!)

(5)The good (or reintegrated) Lex realizes he'd created a monster. I read this as tragic but not destined. I really think evil!Lex represents Lex's shadow side, so if he hadn't been harboring all this hatred and suspicion of Lionel, maybe Lionel would have stayed good. Of course, his hated and suspicion were merited and created by Lionel himself--no question about that. But it is nonetheless tragic, because I'm sure (unspoiled speculation) that Lex is now going to end up killing Lionel, and yet he'll always regret stamping out the potential for goodness in his dad. Regardless of how much the audience wants Lionel to be punished, I don't think Lex does, and doing it will undoubtedly lead to his downfall.


Nora (KK glasses)
Nora Norwich

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