BBC HomeExplore the BBC
This page was last updated in February 2005We've left it here for reference.More information

7 February 2011
Accessibility help
Text only
Cult Television

BBC Homepage
Entertainment

Contact Us

Like this page?
Send it to a friend!

 
Cult | News | 14 February 2005

Smallville: 3

Review: Nip and tuck drama in Facade.

Last week, you may recall I was praising the show to the heavens for its clever plotting, twists and Tom Welling's chest, but ended saying that I might come to miss the mutant of the week and Kryptonite plotlines.

This week: can I take that back, please?

Facade is a return to season one territory – in more ways than one. It's 1991 and Clark is trying to be a sports jock – which basically means Tom goes back to having bad hair and looking lost, bless him. But while he may be having a bad hair day, that's nothing compared to Scabby Abby, as she's lovingly called by her classmates. Bad hair is the least of her problems – yes, this week's episode is sponsored by Tea Tree.

Fast forward to the present and Abigail returns all glam. It's a plot that's been done to death on TV (older viewers may remember an actual plain Jane in Neighbours), but this time the cliché gets the Smallville treatment – i.e. beauty comes at a cost. It turns out that Abby has had extensive surgery, courtesy of her mother Dr Elaine Fine, but unfortunately she seems to have used Kryptonite in the process (the green stuff), which causes hallucinations in anyone she kisses.

With Dr Fine having huge blond hair and being a bit mad it's almost as if the producers have found an unused Lois and Clark script lying around – the result is not a disaster, just a bit odd after the action-packed, thrill-athon of the opening two episodes of the season.

The only twist here is that she chooses to kiss not Clark, but Lana, who is trying to get that mysterious tattoo removed. Gosh have the producers gone all moralistic on us? "Hey kids, don't do tattoos", "Don't have plastic surgery". What next? "Don't eat too many cheeseburgers just to get that free toy"?

Throw in Pa Kent arguing with Clark about joining the team (again), some rather clumsy dialogue where Chloe tells her cousin she should write for The Torch, and Ma Kent being hired by Lex to run The Talon – she's so multi-skilled that one - and that's about it this week.

Worse, there's no Tom Welling topless, but we do get Lois going into the locker rooms, all in the name of journalism – we like her style.



Send us your comment now. We'll publish the best on this page.


Wayne Thornhill
I beleive that Bart was supposed to be the Flash, rather than superboy. He was wearing the flash symbol on his belt and bag, he made reference to forming a leauge and the flash is the only person faster than superman!

Cult reviewer adds: Well, yes quite. I know that - it just got copy-edited wrong. I'm having it changed to make it clearer.

Marc
I think Smallville has a lot of potential but it never seems to reach it, instead content to remain a mediocre show. The production values are high but would be better spent on better writing and story than on special effects. Most of the main cast are very good actors but they are let down with consistantly poor storylines. It lacks the knowing wit and intelligence that made other programmes like Buffy, Angel or Alias, so successful. I do prefer more long running developed arcs than filler or "bad guy of the week" episodes. Personally I don't think the show should stick by any of the continuity developed in the other Superman shows or films. I mean they all took place during ealier time periods anyway, so it doesn't make sense that Clark is a teenager in the 21st century but he was an adult in the nineties. So I think they should try to keep some sense of connection without making everything fit exactly with Superman's future. So Clark could potentially end up with Lana or Lois or Chloe. That would be much more interesting that knowing it has to be Lois.

ssj
smallville is a brilliant show and should atleast have two more seasons to make a excellent ending . I think that since lois is in the story they should keep smallville going longer because lois has just come on smallville and season 5 is supposed to be the end and that would be boring. We need more action in the story. Make smallville the best as it can be....!

Lara
Smallville is a brilliant show. I hope for Season 5 that Lois and Clark begin to team together and slowly become an item. Less Lana Lang for Season 5 as I think I have seen enough of her hot and cold decisions. Never really liked the character, I am glad Lois is in it now. It makes the whole superman/Clark Kent thing, seem more real than before. With Lois in it, it opens more to Clark and his finding his true love in Lois.

Grant
Smallville is the best show ever to be seen on the WB Chloe Sullivan is so hot!

Jennifer
What are they doing with this show I onced loved? I know hey are hurting for plots, but this Lana possesed by a Witch has got to go. What happed to sweet Lana? The relaitonships between Clark & Lex and Clark & Lana are what makes this show. I hope they get back to that.

Oz
problems with smallville. 1: its too slow.I think they should speed things up a little. 2: give the better "freaks" a bit more than 1 week. 3: move away from the silly story lines involving Lana and jason (who cares about him?) 4: concentrate more on Lex/Clark seeing as they are the two most important characters

Casie
Smallville is one of the best shows I've ever seen on TV. I really enjoy the balence between Clarks personal and "superman" life. His personal life with his parents, the debating love life with Lana Lang, Chloe and the new Lois Lane really gives an in depth look to the man behind the superpowers. I really like how in this episode there was a bit more Myth, it was kind of like going back to season one. Going back to Clarks love life, I really think he should hook it up with Chloe one more time before the Clois thing happens. I really think she needs him most ( she has been waiting for how many years again?!) Come on Smallville, another 3 seasons( at least) ;)

nicole
i am loving smallville at the moment, it's so good, this weeks episode was amazing, when clark says that he felt like they were enemies at one point was very spooky and lana's tattoo is proving to be very gripping as to why she has it!keep going smallville!

Pete
Spell surely was the worst episode of Smallville EVER! Thankfully the following episode was a bit better, but still nowhere as good as season 2 and 3 episodes. Transference has been the best episdoe so far and Jinx and devoted were good fun, but Smallville's best when it's dark. I wish someone would dim the lights already.

kurt
Smallville is very entertaining show, itis up they with stargate s.g.1 and stargate atlantis with are the kings of the tv shows.This show have better storyline then that socall new Battlestar galactica show {all it about is robots having sex and becoming human, we see it all before with star terk the next gen. come on, haven't this people get better things to do}. this episodes smallville is no exception. let hope smallville, stargate s.g.1 and stargate atlantis kept up the good work. p.s. I hope the studio come to there senses and put star terk: enterprise back on. season 4 is Excellent. the best star terk season yet.

Vic
worst episode? close, but not as bad as Relic (season 3). as much as i like watching Lana,(haha) they should move her aside as concentrate on making Lex more of a bad guy. also, the addition of Lois is a diffenate NO-NO. they should have waited for the end of the programme to introduce her.

Johnny Bouy
Why is it when peopl eturn evil the become really camp? If Lex is to turn bad in this season will he be all camp too and a bit Elton John? After all, they both play the piano.

Koro
Smallville is tedious. Only worth watching at the send of season so that we can actually get somehwere with the plot

CURT
Clark didn't use his powers to score. It was Mikail who spoke the word TRIP and Clark not being in control of his powers then stumbled into the guy.He didn't try to cheat

Scott
Smallville is great. It is a fresh new take on the mythology of Superman. Those who seem to have issues with the chronology are missing the point. Every generation has had a contemporary feel to Superman. The fresh thing about this is that we all know the eventual outcome of most of the characters in this show, yet we take the journey with them. It is the same story told in a new way. This week's take on The Flash is as good example as any that the creators of this show aren't losing their touch. A brief encounter of two future super heros brilliantly executed. The only thing that spoils the show is Lana, who is under the belief that it is her show. I guess we will have to wait until the end of the season to see what the tattoo is in aid of. Other than that there is no reason for her to be in every episode nowadays

Malbora
Smallvile is great but for God's sake, is Lana ever going to find out about Clark. You should move a little bit faster with the show rathe than everything sounding like a cliche.

Nik
got to say that Smallville is awsome but how long can it really last?? the best way to continue the good work on this show has been lost by not making Tom Welling the new superman!! I think the show is fantastic but he is now coming to the end of his schooling. The movie would of been an ideal place to take up whats happened after he left school.

Sam
Isn't superman meant to be faster than the flash in the comics?

Gray E
If you are going to do a review pleae try and get your facts right! There were no referances to Superboy it was the Flash, all 4 comic flash's were name checked Jay Garrick, Barry Allen, Wally West and Bart Allen also you managed to miss the referances to the Justice league and the Flash symbol and his backpack. come on get it right or give me the job.

Mark
Excellent Storylines. How long though before they begin to repeat themselves. Let us hope the writers can keep if fresh.

Seamus
The boy Bart is actually Kid Flash from the Teen Titans comic not Superboy.

Dave M
I'm enjoying the new series, and love reading your take on the episodes afterwards. In regards to the episode Run, you got your tidies in a twist. Bart was not Superboy, he was a teenage version of The Flash, aka Barry Allen. Run fast, yes, super strong, no. The lightening flash on the backpack and the names on the licenses being aliases of The Flash in his long years are the major clues. It also makes the line about setting up a "club, or a league" very funny, Superman and The Flash being members of the JLA.

Dave
Bart was meant to be the Flash, his three ID cards were the three incarnations of the Flash secret identity, blush the little Flash lightning logo and the red streak. Add to that the hints of setting up a ´┐Żleague´┐Ż it was really well done as an episode looking at the bigger DC universe.

Jess
Not trying to be picky or anything but the kid from Smallville Ep 5 was not meant to be Superboy but was actually the Flash... I am sure many a die hard fan has been outraged but just in case they were still spluttering with disbelief I thought I would let you know!

Martin F
Not so much a comment as a correction (Awooga, Awooga... Comic geek alert!!!), The show wasn't about Superboy, as your review says, but about the teenage Flash. The kids name was Bart Allen which is the name of Kid Flash (the teenage version of the hero from the future) in the comics. There were also several references to the Flash in his different guises (the names Jay Garrick, Barry Allen, and Wally West were all on the fake IDs read by Clark, these are the 3 people who have been the Flash at various times in the comics history). Also there was the clothes Bart wore (Red and Yellow, the Flash's costume colours) and the symbol on his backpack ( a yellow flash of lightening, the chest logo the flash wears). All very sad and geeky info, I know, but when you like both the source material and the show itself, it kinda grates when such a big mistake is made.

Neil
The new kid (Bart) is The Flash, not Superboy. Come on guys, get your facts straight!

Keith Fearnley
Smallville is the best show on TV. While most other great shows on TV have been cancelled (Buffy, Angel, Dead Like Me, Dark Angel, Futurama, Firefly and Enterprise, to name a few!)Smallville has managed to keep one step ahead of the game and be consistently great ever since it began. Although Season 4 has been slow to start, the writers managed to hint on many storylines in the first episode of season 4 which will be drawn-out through the course of this season. The long story arcs are the best kind and are so brilliantly executed by the Smallville cast and crew. It makes this show an absolute joy to watch and has me glued to my seat every week.

Andrew
You said Bart was Smallville's version of Superboy - He is clearly not Superboy but the Flash. Indeed on the WB website, he is listed as the Flash.

dan mckee
When you say superboy. I think you mean the flash.

Dean
What's wrong with Dawson's Creek with powers Jamie? Anyway, I agree with the review - altho its a filler, it does it in style by concentrating more on the humour than on the bad guys, which worked out better. Stepford Chloe was hilarious! Go Smallville! I want at least 2 more seasons!

Ally
Smallville is one of the most entertaining programmes on t.v at the moment... I must admit i am enjoying Clark with his top off (more please).. I wish Lana would stop going about wwith her soppy eyes looking like a lost puppy, get over it. May Smallville live 4eva...

Cathy
Love Lois!!! I am a recent convert to Smallville, but I love the antagonism between Clark and Lois, when we all KNOW that true love is ahead - waaaaay ahead!

ashleigh
i love watching smalville it is really good. i think it sould keep going but they need more superman tham sexman its turning into a sex show

Scott Kinnaird
A brilliant show brilliantly executed. However I agree with Jamie and think that it should end soon. Though the filler episodes in this show aren't as tedious as in other sci-fi shows, they should not be allowed to be. If there is to be another season after this one then it should be the nest as well as the last. Leave us wanting more.

marius
Well it seems he'a a senior now thus season 4 should conclude the smallville based life of Clark. Hope they'll make a future superman show ... would that be a good idea ?

Dion
I am a massive fan of smallville, but why oh why must we have Lana looking all soppy every episode. I think the writers spend too much on her and not enough on Chloe who is far more interesting.

Tony
Chronology aint a problem Frank? Though I love the regular homage's paid to the films in the series, Smallville aint a prequel to them? What I am curious about is how anyone is not going to know Supermans real identity when Clark finaly dons cape and tights and starts flying around. After years of suspecting something aint right surely Chloe, Lex and Lional at the very least will put 2 and 2 together? Now let me see... CLARK, (Dark haired, good looking, harbouring mysterious secret, regularly disapears faster than a speeding bullet, comes out best in collisions with Porches, knows Lois Lane)? SUPERMAN... (Dark Haired, good looking, Super fast, super strong, Mysterious background, regularly rescues Lois Lane)? Hmmmmm! Could there be a connection?

Aaron Edwards
Smallville just keeps on going from strength to strength with each cracking episode. It was a lovely touch to put lois lane into the series at this stage of clarks life and see the early sparks goung off...May it continue for another four seasons and beyond

Stu
I want to like Smallville.I love the Superman mythology but I do find Smallville often disappoints. The first two episodes of this new season have been quite good... but from the looks of next weeks trailer, the writers have gone back to the "Kryptonite enhanced baddie of the week" approach... which started getting very boring about 2 seasons ago! Fingers crossed for better writing this season. It should be good - they've got loads of ex-Buffy/Angel writers working on it now!

Brenna
Smallville has done pretty well with all the different conflicts, but the Lana angle is dead. It does not pertain at ALL to the superman story and is a little too soap opera-esque. But I'm excited for the Lex vs. Clark stuff.

Devin
Watching this show on American television, I'm well aware of the comparisons it draws to all the teen angst dramas. Yet, I have to say that this Superman series has so far used special effects to their fullest in demonstrating his super powers, such as car crashes and the whole Clark/Flash chasing about. I wasn't keen on the matrix-esque "leap" into the air by "Kal El" (isn't he supposed to be simply defying gravity?), but I don't think Christopher Reeve (or Keanu for that matter) ever looked so convincing rocketing through the clouds.

Johnny
Another top notch episode. Agree fully with the review - Lana is tedious and the Chloe mystery was ruined by the bizarre decision to have her in the opening credits. I love how the tv show has rewritten the history of the Superman mythology - it means that nothing is a forgone conclusion. Anything can happen! There are only two guarantees - Clark will become Superman and Lex will become his greatest foe!

Rob
Smallville some how manages to find a place up thier with the original reeves movies... a feat rarely accomplished, I feel that this can't last much longer though...

Frank Tindale
I have to say enjoy Smallville for all its failings - chronology being the most glaringly obvious. We all know Clark met Lois for the first time in the 1st film - so why does she pop up this early?

Johnny
The appearance of not one but two Lois Lanes (the new incarnation and Mrogt Kidder from the movies)- GENIUS! It was very poignant when Martha asked Bridgette about whether she was in love with Dr Swann "Once...in another lifetime.." *wipes away tear*

Jamie
I feel that Smallville needs to end at this or at the very most one more season. It is being dragged on for too long with far to many filler episodes. Season 3 especially. Clarke has powers, we know Lex is turning bad. Wrap it up please before it gets boring and ends up being like Dawson Creek with special powers.

Name:

Comment:



Thank you for your comments. The BBC reserves the right to modify any messages before appearing on this web page.





World of Cult web guide:

Antiques price guide
Catch up on BBC TV and Radio. Watch and listen now.

I'm Sorry I Haven't A ClueBBC ThreeJazz


About the BBC | Help | Terms of Use | Privacy & Cookies Policy