Smallville Official Site

The Time:
Fridays, 8:00 PM, The CW

The Show:

Having grown up in Smallville under the protective eye of Jonathan and Martha Kent, Clark Kent, is seting about the course of pursuing his destiny.  After the events of Season 8, where Jimmy Olsen was killed and his relationship with Chloe strained, Clark has decided to cut all ties with his human life in order to complete the training for which Jor-El had prepared him.  But new complications in the form of a group of Kryptonian soldiers, led by Major Zod, who have arrived on Earth, promise to present new obstacles for the future Man of Steel.

The Stars:

•  Tom Welling – Clark Kent
•  Allison Mack – Chloe Sullivan
•  Erica Durance – Lois Lane
•  Justin Hartley – Oliver Queen / Green Arrow
•  Cassidy Freeman – Tess Mercer

The Episode:

Clark is still doing the hero thing, but in a new black ensemble.  Lois re-emerges from the future with a ninja playmate and no memory of her experiences.  Jimmy’s still dead and thanks to Clark’s refusal to use the Legion ring to change that, despite Chloe’s begging, will stay that way.  Lois meets the newest reporter in town, John Corben, and Tess is being held hostage by the Candorian soldiers who emerged from the orb, led by a Major Zod.  Clark learns via an encounter from the ninja assassin, that he has one year to stop an Apocalypse he is destined to bring. 

The Lowdown:

The events of the Season 8 finale didn’t leave me looking forward to the Season premiere of Smallville like I had in the past.  Before they ended in cliffhangers with a slobberknocker between Clark and Bizarro, or Lex bringing down the fortress with the Kryptonian orb.  But this past season’s finale was a train wreck of unprecedented proportions and watching that and now this season premiere, I’m in the air as to whether or not the show’s even worth catching anymore.  Here’s the situation: Jimmy’s dead (yay) thanks to Davis Bloom, who’s also dead; Doomsday is buried in the center of the earth after a Mike Tyson-Michael Spinks-level of a disappointing fight with Clark; Clark has cut all ties with his human friends to start his Kryptonian midterm exams; Lois disappeared into the future after a meaningless fight with Tess; and a group of Kryptonian soldiers, led by Major Zod, have emerged from the same orb that Lex used to bring down the Fortress at the end of Season 7. 

So as this new season opens up, Lois returns from the future with no memory of the events of the last three weeks, pursued by some ninja bitch with a penchant for trying to shish kebab her and leaving Superman symbols burned into walls via heat vision.  Lois meets John Corben (Brian Austin Green), the Planet’s newest reporter, who has an axe to grind with the Red-Blue Blur.  Clark is still doing the Blur thing, only now it’s the Black Blur thing, thanks to his new outfit: black all over with the Superman crest spray-painted on a shirt and a black trenchcoat.  Later, Chloe implores him to use the Legion ring Lois came back with to go back in time to save Jimmy, which Clark refuses to do. 

As this is going on, Oliver is doing the Fight Club thing.  Meanwhile, Tess is being held hostage and tortured by a battalion of Candorian soldiers at Lex’s mansion, led by Zod.  The Candorians also have no Kryptonian superpowers as of yet and no idea how or why they’ve ended up on Earth.  Finally, Clark was attacked by the ninja, who is also Kryptonian and sporting a hunk of blue kryptonite in order to even the playing field against Clark, whom she’s trying to kill in order to prevent an Apocalyptic future that he will bring.  Cut back to the Candorians to discover that the ninja was a future version of one of the soldiers.

The set up for the goings on of this season have potential, but I’m more in the dark than I’ve ever been about the motivations and plans of the characters than I’ve been since watching the show.  Why is Jor-El dancing around the training issue with Clark when he was perfectly happy to just hijack and reprogram his brain into a Kryptonian drone before?  How long is the Oliver self pity thing going to be dragged out?  Been there and done that.  He’s a hero, he’s not a hero, then he’s a hero, then not again.  Oliver’s arc is looking way more like a circle.  The Justice league keeps starting up and winding down and then starting up again as well.  Where’s John Jones, by the way? 

One thing that seems to be looking up is that Metallo and possibly some other villains / heroes are coming into the mix this season.  And there’s been definite groundwork and timeline laid for figuring out this Apocalyptic future thing.  Having a bunch of Candorians running around and the retconning possibilities may prove to be interesting.  Definitely liked the Neman retcon last season as it pertained to Clark and Davis rather than Clark and Lex.  Finally got an explanation on Clark’s not flying yet also.  Think Spider-Man 2 subplot re: powers and you pretty much get it.  What’re the chances of getting Kara back?  She set out to look for Candorians and now there’s a small village of them camped out in Lex’s mansion. 

A couple of final notes: is olive green and dog tags a universal constant when it comes to the military?  I look at the Candorians and think I’m catching an episode of Battlestar.  Sure, they’re Kryptonian dog tags, but they’re still dog tags.  On a more positive note, though, we get the explanation for Zod’s infatuation with kneeling: that’s how Candorians salute a superior officer.  My interest level for the show has gone way down over the last year, but I’m still curious to see what’s the what as this will more than likely be the show’s final season.  As long as there are no more friggin’ love triangles – of any sort – I may survive this season.

6.1 out of 10