Smallville: Cyborg

"Your secret is safe with me, Kal-El."

I knew Lionel was still possessed by Jor-El! I knew it!

Or... on second thought, maybe what we have is a combination of Jor-El and Lionel. It's hard to tell. I kept thinking Lionel was behind the blackmail attempt and was using it to manipulate Martha, but then we saw Lionel pay the guy off, and we know Lionel truly likes Martha. I guess I'm still mildly confused.

But if Lionel is indeed still possessed by Jor-El, there's a certain symmetry to it. Clark's adopted father is gone, but his real father is now protecting him. (And protecting Martha as well.) Was Lionel going to tell Jonathan the truth the night Jonathan died? He did talk about "mutual interests." And it's certainly true that Clark's adopted father and his real father would have a mutual interest in protecting Clark.

The A-plot was better than I expected from the previews. Victor Stone, our unwilling Frankenstein experiment, generated some sympathy on my part. Victor expressed a lot of the same doubts that Clark feels, and did something that Clark has been unable to do: confide in his girlfriend. At least his example didn't make Clark run and confess to Lana. Life is good.

"No small talk, no pleasantries, just straight to the accusations." I can't help wondering how long Lex is going to allow Clark to keep barging into the mansion and accusing him of dastardly deeds. Maybe Lex enjoys sparring with (and lying to) Clark. When Lex told Clark that he had nothing to do with Cyntechnics, I almost believed him... and was almost immediately enlightened. What Lex did to Victor was outright evil. Lex crossed the line again.

Have we completely reversed roles from the beginning of the series? Lex is now bad, but Lionel may not be. My favorite scenes here were, as usual, those with Lex and Lionel. This series wouldn't be nearly as much fun without the Luthors.

Bits and pieces:

— Lana's turn this week. Lois was not in this episode.

— The name "Victor" was an obvious reference to Victor Frankenstein. There were also several references to the old series, The Six Million Dollar Man. And I know this is a stretch, but Dr. Krieg called off the dogs and I immediately thought of Frank-n-furter in Rocky Horror.

— "Widow to take Senate Seat." Headline in the Smallville Ledger.

— So there's another superguy in Metropolis, and Lana hits him with her car. This pushes the envelope as far as coincidence is concerned. (Repeat to yourself, it's a comic book, Billie. It's a comic book, Billie.)

— The scene where Victor was running through hallways trying to escape from the lab looked like it was filmed in one of those rent-a-center storage places.

— Lex was going to have a behavioral control chip inserted into Victor's head. He must want a super slave. Superman, under his control. Shades of future Lex.

Quotes:

"Milk. It does a body good."
Another product placement?

Victor: "How could she ever love a thing like me?"
Clark: "I may not be the best person to be asking that."

Chloe: "So on a scale from one to Taye Diggs, where exactly are we?"

Victor: "I feel like a billion dollars. Which probably isn't too far off."

Not bad at all, and I absolutely loved the shocker at the end. Three out of four stars,

Billie
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Billie Doux had a love-hate relationship with Smallville, which is why some of her reviews are briefer than they should be.

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