(S09E19) With the season winding down, Zod really needs to get down to business if he wants to take down Clark and take over the world. That is what he wants, right? All shall kneel before Zod. I think I've heard that expression a time or two. In fact, I may have heard it a time or two too much, by now.
Maybe I'm getting impatient for these threading storylines to actually go someplace, but I found myself frustrated through most of tonight's episode. We got a good chunk of it with Tess and Chloe locked up in Watchtower together, because this is a generic 1980s action show ... or a comedy ... or really any cliche show you can think of.
The dialogue seemed a little off tonight, and I could have really done without Tess giving all these weird looks to everyone through most of the episode. I found myself hoping Chloe would open the door and keep walking. You know what I mean.
The pair was also involved in a number of big-screen projects, including 'Shanghai Noon,' 'Spider-Man 2' and the tween flick 'Hannah Montana: The Movie.'
The article does not specify the type of programming they will create for Sony's TV division. If they're consistent in terms of the shows they've previously worked on, then it will likely be material aimed at the CW type of audience (or those who appreciate teen angst).
On the other hand, 'Smallville' improved in quality once the two of them departed. That time coincided with the show concentrating more on the geek factor than the teen angst (which is useful since the characters aren't of teens anymore). As a result, it's tough to say whether this deal is more a boon for Gough and Millar or Sony.
(S09E17) Five episodes left in this ninth season, so General Zod needs to start putting together whatever his endgame plan is going to be. Steps were definitely taken toward that this week, but first we got the return of one of Superman's deadliest foes: Metallo.
It's always nice to see Brian Austin Green, and he's actually quite effective in this role. I was a little disappointed in how quickly they were able to re-establish his character in whatever way they needed him for this week, but I'll forgive it because it was so much fun seeing almost everyone else turned on their ears.
Checkmate and The Wall took a break from intimidating everyone and pushing Tess around, which freed Tess up to make an unexpected alliance. Also missing from the fun was Green Arrow, but there was plenty of action without them.
Here's tonight's TV lineup (all times Eastern). All shows listed are new, unless otherwise noted.
Once again the schedule is light on the original. It may be time to clean out your DVR.
Cartoon Network: 'Batman: 'The Brave and the Bold'-- Fan of the show
8:00 to 9:00
The CW: 'Smallville'
NBC: 'Secrets of the Mountain' -- New made-for-TV movie
Disney Channel: 'The Suite Life on Deck' and 'Wizards of Waverly Place' -- 'Wizards' guest-stars Shakira
Nickelodeon: 'Big Time Rush' and 'The Troop'
9:00 to 10:00
ABC: 'Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution'
Animal Planet: 'I Shouldn't Be Alive'
Cartoon Network: 'Star Wars: The Clone Wars'
CMT: 'Gator 911' and 'Danger Coast'
HBO: 'The Ricky Gervais Show' and 'The Life & Times of Tim'
National Geographic: 'Dog Whisperer'
SyFy: 'Stargate Universe'
Teen Nick: 'Degrassi: The Next Generation'
TLC: 'The What Not to Wear Awards'
10:00 to 11:00
CBS: 'Miami Medical'
NBC: 'Dateline NBC'
E!: 'The Soup' and 'Forbes: Heiresses Gone Wild'
Food Network: 'Private Chefs of Beverly Hills'
HBO: 'Real Time with Bill Maher' -- Jesse Ventura
Starz: 'Spartacus: Blood and Sand'
11:00 to Midnight
Comedy Central: 'Comedy Central Presents' -- Bret Ernst and Iliza Shlesinger
Check your local TV listings for more information. After the jump, the late night talk shows.
If there were any downsides to the episodes, they were minor and revolved around Tess. Her character seems all over the place and has had too many different roles in her history. First, she's Luthor's pawn, then she's a bad-ass corporate CEO, then she's in bed with Zod, then she's a Checkmate agent, and now she's a rogue agent with a price on her head. The writers need to decide who she is and be consistent about it. Or maybe the inconsistency is part of her character. But that gets a pass since the rest of the episode worked so well.
Six more episodes remain in this season, and tonight we got some advancement in the Lois/Clark relationship, plus some sort of relationship between Chloe and Oliver which remains vague. But then, if relationships on television weren't fluid, they'd be far more boring.
When we last left the show, Zod had obtained his Kryptonian powers from Clark's blood. Now, instead of one of the 'Saw' movies, the episode has become an 80's horror flick with Silver Banshee becoming the equivalent of Freddy or Jason (or perhaps one of the 'Leprechaun' movies, if you want to keep with the same Irish heritage as the Banshee).
Hollywood in-fighting is nothing new, and it's usually pretty interesting. The latest example is that the current producers behind 'Smallville' are suing both Warner Brothers and the CW. The accusation is that the company is "short-selling" the show to the network and thereby cutting the producers out of potential profit.
Money has always seemed a problem for the show. While 'Smallville' does not have the worst special effects in history (that award goes to classic 'Doctor Who'), it does sometimes appear to be made on a shoestring budget. In this recessionary environment, it should be no surprise that everybody is fighting like wolves for a bigger piece of the pie. More's the pity since the show has gotten better in the last two or three years.
The curious thing is the long-term effect. Will the producers for the tenth season now be replaced? Will this be the final nail in the coffin to make the show's tenth season its last? What do you think?
'Highlights' was one of the few pleasures of my childhood trips to the dentist's office, the others being the toy at the end of the visit and a dentist who had a very liberal nitrous policy. Every six months, I spent an hour split between enjoying the games and puzzles in 'Highlights' and burning a hole through my stomach-lining with dentist-inspired fear.
One feature of 'Highlights' that always stood out to me was "Goofus and Gallant": a teaching aid using two brothers, one of whom always did everything wrong - Goofus - and one who always did everything right - Gallant.
Since most TV executives are like children anyway, I figured the "Goofus and Gallant" model would be ideal to teach them a few things about how to improve their product.
Truthfully, the show's quality has improved in the last two years. The teen angst factor has gone down in favor of the geek factor. The increased ratings reflect this improvement, added to the change of the broadcast night (because Friday night is geek night on television).
To The CW: here is some free, unsolicited advice. Ten years is a good number, but the tenth year should be the show's last. If it continues, then have Clark don the costume at the end of the season and either spin-off a 'Superman' movie series or create a sequel television series called 'Metropolis.' Don't call it 'Superman' if it's a television series. That's the kiss of death.
One of the rules of casting for this show must be that every male character must be able to look good without a shirt. Both Oliver and Zod did just that in this episode. Zod looked good for a soldier that has been in battle and taken shrapnel while leading his army of American Apparel models. Krypton must have a great H.M.O.
Who else predicted the ending other than me? More on that after the jump.
Here's hoping the writers think of something good and it doesn't become one of those 30-second final confrontations with the season's Big Bad in order to save on the special effects budget (so much for 'Doomsday').
When one thinks about it, the 'Star Wars' references make sense. It was the success of the first 'Star Wars' movie that led to Hollywood's interest in science fiction and fantasy that led to the first 'Superman' movie. Irony of ironies.
Tonight's story was chock-full-o-comic-book-references. From the very beginning with the appearance of Radu's to the end mention of the Suicide Squad. It was enough to make any loyal fanboy's brain explode.
Admittedly, the episode was kind of light on story and ended up having major plot-holes, the least of which being how exactly Hawkman's helmet stayed on. The beginning of the episode was extremely reminiscent of the 'Watchmen' movie, particularly with the newsreel-style clips of the Justice Society. If you imagine a parallel 'Watchmen' universe in which Rorschach was actually correct with his "mask killer" theory, then you have tonight's 'Smallville' episode.
For Smallville, things usually start to drag around the midseason point. Then it's like driving with the parking brake on until the season's final three episodes arrive. But not this year.
This week's solid entry and next week's "Absolute Justice" event are signs that Smallville will sustain the momentum by giving fans exactly what they want – fun episodes that feed into ongoing story arcs, and plenty of geeky superhero action.
"Disciple" smartly nudged a few major plot threads forward, offered some sweet Lois & Clark moments, and delivered an entertaining self-contained story. Spoilers below.
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