Smallville: Charade

Blur: "Our relationship puts you at risk. I know that we would do anything to protect each other. What if, one day, I'm too late?"
Lois: "But you don't understand. I don't care about the risk. When I'm working with you, I'm doing something good, something right."

I love Lois and Clark episodes, and although for the most part this one didn't disappoint, I do have a bit of a rant to get off my chest. It was tricky of the writers to use Lois to cement Clark's need for secrecy. But what nags at me is a point that they didn't cover. Lois wants to protect the Blur and make sure his identity wasn't revealed to the world. She wants to protect him from opportunists that would use her to get to him. He wants to keep his distance, sever ties, and make sure she isn't burdened with his secret, which should keep her from harm. But the conceit here is twofold. One, she is always in harm's way, and two, they are already tied together whether she knows his secret or not.

I know it is classic Superman to keep Lois in the dark. It is a fun diversion and a silly twist at a romantic love triangle. But there is no way this dynamic will work on this show. Lois knows Clark's face way too well to be fooled by the glasses trick. And they have been together for too long for her to not be told what's going on. The tragic truth is Lois needs that information because she will put herself into bad situations without it. It is dangerous and stupid to keep her in the dark. Rant done.

What seemed strange to me was that Lois and Clark really didn't have a lot of screen time together. They were pulled apart a lot in this episode for dramatic effect. At least they didn't break up, well, Lois and Clark didn't, at least.

I do feel that Chloe should be ashamed of herself for encouraging Clark to hide the truth from Lois. I think she should know that there is no way to keep Lois out of trouble, and in the dark, at the same time. But nothing Chloe is doing lately makes a lot of sense.

Maxwell Lord is a villain from the comics, whose claim to fame (that I know of), is that he was killed by Wonder Woman. Here he is the Black King. They finally explained Checkmate a little more, which I felt was sorely needed. The White Queen (Amanda Waller) is in charge of the intelligence division, and I think she is running the Suicide Squad on her own. The Black King is running black operations, including metaphysical experimentation. And finally we have a partial reveal of the Red Queen, which was interesting and marginally frustrating. I have two guesses at who was hidden, since there would be no reason to hide her identity except if she is a character we already know. My guess is it would have to be a powerful and influential person. So it is in my humble, non-spoilery, opinion that it is either Lana Lang, or Martha Kent.

Bits:

One last Blur and Lois phone booth call. I love her using an old style phone booth, it is such a nice callback.

They are so close to the old faithful Lois, Clark, and Superman triptych that I think the writers are having a hard time divorcing themselves from the idea. Still it does have its fun side, with Clark staring meaningfully at Lois. Tom Welling has spent ten years perfecting that stare, and he does it well.

Clark, or rather the Blur, jumping through the hologram was the best special effect of the week.

The reflection of the white superman symbol that Lois was looking at while talking to the Blur was really interesting. It was glowing slightly. Don't you just love post production effects?

Blu Mankuma was a welcome surprise (I've liked a good deal of his previous work) as the new interim editor of the Daily Planet. One guess who will take his place!

& Pieces:

Clark: "Uh, Miss Lane is an acquired taste. I-It's just that ever since Tess went away, we've gone through a lot of editors."
Franklin W. Stern: "Well, not for long. The board just launched a global search for the next editor-in-chief. And I intend to make their decision very easy."
Lois: "And you decided to start your campaign by downsizing the desk inventory?"

Maxwell Lord: "They have all witnessed The Blur. Pieces of his identity have been locked within their minds. They simply need to be severed."
Ray Sacks: "And you're extracting their memories with this whole Jedi mind control thing. Very impressive interrogation skills."

This was back to form, and it was definitely fun no matter how frustrated I am with the Lois and Clark lie-capade.

3 out of 4 Phone Booths

J.D. Balthazar is a confirmed nerd who loves most things sci-fi or fantasy-related.

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