Post Game TV Recap: SMALLVILLE S9E2 - "Metallo"
In this column, we'll have a variety of contributers from our Best Shots and Blog@ crews taking a look at the biggest sci-fi and genre shows, providing recaps and commentary. The nature of the column allows for SPOILERS, so consider yourself warned.-- Lois Lane (Erica Durance)
We start this episode with Lois Lane at the Kent farm. Oddly enough, that is the only thing that ties the show with its name. Lois is sneaking around the Kent household and bumps into Shelby, the Kent's dog. Now, I had thought Lois had a dog allergy... I guess she outgrew it. She notices that somebody is feeding Shelby as his bowl is somewhat full. Lois then gets a call from John Corben and they get into a flirtatious conversation/quip battle over whether or not the Blur is doing good for the city or needs to be brought to justice. After the conversation, Corben drops the locket with the picture of his sister and it falls into the street. Reaching for it...
BAM! He gets hit by a truck. This actually startled me and I felt like such a sap for falling for such an obvious ploy. The graphic scene that followed was pretty intense. Corben wakes up, incredibly disoriented and in obvious pain on a surgical table where we observe right there with him that he is now part-machine with a glowing green "heart." Ladies and gentlemen: Metallo.
After the credits, where I noticed that Callum Blue/Zod gets billing over Justin Hartley/Green Arrow, we see it's morning in Metropolis and Clark stands vigil from a rooftop, listening in to any crimes. Once he hears the police radio reporting a robbery, he breaks into action. Meanwhile, back at Lois' place, she is having the nightmares/visions of the events that we're surely going to see develop by the end of this season, but is woken up by Shelby. Then, Chloe walks in and wonders why Shelby is in the room and they have a discussion about Clark and where he might have gone to. Lois admits she misses Clark, though is in denial about her feelings, but lets it slip that she got a call from the Blur again. Busted, Mr. Kent. Lois talks about how the Blur opens up to her, something Chloe tries to rationalize. Later, back to the Kent farm again, Clark runs into Chloe and she explains how she's covering up for him and is rightfully pissed for not making up his mind about whether or not he's "human." It was nice to see Chloe stand up to her lifelong friend the way she did.
Back at the hospital, Corben is trying to figure out what happened and then Dr. Emil Hamilton shows up and explains to Corben that there is some sort of meteor rock-powered matrix that has been installed into him. Surprise, surprise, Corben goes nuts at the hospital and runs amok. Now, I understand he's angry and confused, but I'd at least stay put to see if a real doctor can fix it. Oh, wait... his heart is missing? Ahh. Well that is perfect reasoning for a superpowered temper tantrum.
In our first visit to the Luthor mansion, Tess Mercer is practicing her bo staff skills (enter Napoleon Dynamite joke here) where Lois walks in and there is talk of blackmail if Lois doesn't get her job back at the Daily Planet (since that's basically all that she remembers is that she used to work at the Planet). When Lois leaves seemingly pushed the right buttons with Tess, a young whippersnapper shows ups with info she's looking for on the Kryptonians. Back to the hospital, Hamilton is visited in his office by Clark and he gets the details on "Metallo." Hamilton observes that Corben's brimming with adrenalin at record levels to keep the kryptonite heart going. On the loose now, Corben returns to the scene of his accident and finds a picture he misplaced of his deceased sister, and it deepens a hatred for who he thinks is responsible for her death, the Red-Blue Blur.
At the Daily Planet, Lois is back at her old desk and her editor confirms that she is back on payroll according to their Human Resources department. Corben's not there to be given an assignment, so Lois is given the task of covering the hospital rampage caused by -- wait for it -- John Corben. She whines about getting "leftovers," but she's not in a position to argue just yet. Before she leaves she gets a call from Clark, him using his voice disguising machine. He's working the hospital case and she's eager to help since on it as well. She's smitten with the idea that she's getting preferential treatment. Clark then offers her a phone booth rendezvous at 7:00 that night. Chloe pops in to take Lois to lunch but her assignment working with the Blur has her occupied, "hunting down a real Terminator."
Tess with her new lackey, Stuart, is at the warehouse where Corben was worked on. Investigating the premises, they figure out the Metallo experiment and then piece together the WHY. Maybe a Kandorian experiment since whoever was responsible, left Corben to his own devices. Cut to Lois back at the Planet and Corben is there, trying to dig up research that isn't there due to a recent office change in database. He's a complete mental case in his inquisition, so Lois begins to put the pieces together, and they form a bigger picture when he asks if he can borrow her keys to access the archives room since his own are missing. Missing keys WERE a bit of an issue. She gives in and makes a fast retreat to get to the phone booth to share her discovery with the Blur. And what about that hospital story, Lane? Planet deadlines lackadaisical? Clark scolds her for getting too close to the cyborg he's trying to track down, but the situation basically fall in her lap, right? While she's on the phone, a green glow behind her hints that she is in big trouble. Before Clark can get there in time, Lois has been taken by Corben. Some kryptonite residue remains the telephone Lois was using, so Clark knows he's in for a good fight.
Clark shows up at Chloe's office asking for help to find Lois. Chloe grills him for involving Lois and the fact she was earlier referring to herself as the Blur's sidekick. Chloe warns Clark that Corben's heart has been replaced with kryptonite and he's quick to retaliate with Hamilton's secret weapon that creates an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) that disables electronic devices. Figures it'll take out Corben long enough to get Lois to safety, and Clark's also willing to take the chance that the kryptonite will continue to work regardless. You can tell that his thoughtless suggestion that talking to Lois "just felt right" stings Chloe a bit. Granted, he's been trying to shed his human side to embrace his destiny, but did he all of the sudden forget his history with Chloe and how effective they were as a team for so many years? Ouch. Chloe pulls up a video e-mail from John to his sister from earlier in the year when he was working in Afghanistan. Chloe puts it together that John's sister, Rebecca, was killed three months earlier in a home invasion not long after she moved there. The fact that it was a crime that the Red-Blue Blur missed goes a long way toward Corben's vendetta against the city's so-called savior. Kind of crafty, huh? Records show that Corben bought his late sister's apartment, so he speeds away in hopes of finding Lois there.
At the suspected basement, Corben confronts Lois about her connection to the Blur. He shows off his new hardware and demands to know who the Blur is. Her attempt to swat him with a big wrench is met with a super-strength smackdown that knocks her across the room and lays her out cold. Conveniently, that's when Clark swoops in, keeping his distance in the process. It's then that Corben reveals why Clark is truly responsible for his sister's murder. The Blur saved a prison bus on a previous occasion and a killer escaped in the process, the one who murdered Rebecca. Corben angrily questions Clark for interfering in humanity, but Clark really can't answer that. When Corben gets too close to Clark he springs the EMP grenade on him, and it does its job. One problem: not long enough. Corben comes to, and now he realizes that his kryptonite is doing a number on Clark. Clark respnds with a super-heated lead plate that fuses to Corben's chest. Corben laughs it off, but when he rips the lead off his chest ,the implant chamber holding the kryptonite is stuck to it and he inadvertently pulls his own heart out of his chest and powers down. Clark helps Lois come to, but he teases her with the prospect of him showing himself once and for all before he makes a superspeed exit.
Later at Chloe's apartment, Clark apologizes for not being there after Jimmy's death and he realizes that roaming on rooftops detached from things does humanity a disservice. "What's the point of protecting life if you've lost your sense on how to live it?" Clark suggests. When he decides to return as Clark Kent, Chloe tells him that the top priority has to be keeping tabs on Lois. Why, you may ask? Turns out, Chloe found Lois' work computer loaded with spyware from Tess, so it's apparent that Tess wanted to find out where Lois was for those missing three weeks. Clark and Chloe know that if Tess finds out that Lois was in the future that it could mean bad things for them. The next day at the Daily Planet, Lois tosses John Corben's office plate in the trash. Clark comes in just in time to see Lois pull out his name plate and he says he'll be needing it. She's thrilled to see Clark, hugs him before remembering to put up her usual facade with him. We leave them with her catching him up on what he's supposedly missed out on.
"Metallo" ends at the Luthor mansion with Tess examining Corben's kryptonite heart chamber. Her head scientist confirms that Corben is more machine than man now since his vital signs read "offline." Stuart barges in like an eager kid and she scolds him, reminding him that she's the boss and he is to knock. How dominating. He DOES have something to show her though: Kryptonian symbols for "blood," "nobility," and "family" were scorched onto land on all corners of the globe the very day the Kandorians arrived on Earth. The significance of this is that one all too familiar symbol was burned into the ground somewhere, and a tight zoom into the picture shows an unconscious man in the heart of it: the symbol is the El family crest.
This episode had some choice moments, and Brian Austin Green played the perfect villainous role for an A-list Superman villain. Erica Durance continues to shine in the proverbial heels of Lois Lane. With the ending the way it was, it makes me wonder if we are going to see any other members of the El Family clan? I know that the show had been put on this death sentence of a time slot (ratings prove it so), but I can only hope that the show continues to be as strong as this episode was.