Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Friday's Smallville was like the Wicker (Super)Man! 80hat

Last week's spooky Smallville was some insane amalgam of The Wicker Man, Robin Williams' Jack, and Tommy Wiseau's The Room. It combined country bumpkin human sacrifices with a creepy turbo-aging Lex Luthor with softcore erotica...with Superman!
Smallville has been on a hot streak of better-than-average episodes lately. "Harvest," to be blunt, was not one of them. But there's a particular paradox when it comes to watching Smallville — the more an episode resembles a steaming hunk of weaponized Velveeta, the more entertaining it tends to be. Indeed, "Harvest" was the kind of episode that will win you over with its sheer badness.
Friday's Smallville was like the Wicker (Super)Man!
Let's start with the first plot — Clark and Lois are on their way to cover a Cherry Festival (Clark wants to keep Lois away from the anti-vigilante rally, so he puts them on the soft news beat) when they get two flats in the bucolic hamlet of Meeker Springs. Clark power-walks over the county line to buy a new tire while Lois hangs out with what appears to be a friendly Mennonite girl. Lois disappears with girl, who belongs to a cult of hillbillies who drink water infused with blue Kryptonite and sacrifice a woman every year to commemorate the Kryptonian meteor shower of 1989. Why? So the harvest is plentiful, of course.
This plot twist gives the evil Amish a chance to wail on Clark until he rescues Lois with a shotgun. This part of the episode was predictable, villain-of-the week pap, but Erica Durance was in fine form warning the crazies of Meeker Springs that the divine Superman would descend from the heavens and destroy their crops with super-breath.
Friday's Smallville was like the Wicker (Super)Man!
The second story followed Tess and Alexander, her fast-aging clone of Lex. It was only last week that Tess' promised to love and care for him. She changes her tune real fast when a boatload of totally perplexing events go down:
1.) Since we last saw him, Alexander has aged four years in two weeks. In that time, Tess has held him four birthday parties, complete with children who I can only assume she hired to attend. Seriously, where did she get these kids? Wouldn't they be at least a little freaked out that their new friend will be a college freshman by Thanksgiving? Also, isn't it really insensitive to hold a birthday party for a kid who will be dead by next Labor Day? Even when Tess tries to be good, she can't win.
Friday's Smallville was like the Wicker (Super)Man!
2.) Alexander has a seizure at his depressing birthday party. It turns out that this seizure is caused by his hatred of Clark...which is etched into his DNA.
3.) Tess tries to convince Alexander that Clark Kent is a good guy. Alexander claims that Tess only gets by on her connections with powerful men. Is he genetically predisposed for misogyny too?
4.) Tess' research team finds a cure for Alexander's fast aging. Tess has a volte-face and decides to lock up Alexander until he spoils like an overripe avocado in six weeks. Meanwhile, Alexander shaves his head. From declarations of love to evil haircuts. Hooray for hyper-compressed storytelling.
Friday's Smallville was like the Wicker (Super)Man!
After their adventure with the Amish death cult, Clark and Lois have sex in a scene straight out of a Harlequin romance novel. I'm not sure if it's because the blue Kryptonite temporarily tamped down Clark's powers or if evil Mennonites get them hot, but they have intercourse. At first I thought they had sex in the barn, but I realized the scene cut to the Kent's home. This disappointed me, as a tussle in the hay would've made this scene extra-porny.
Friday's Smallville was like the Wicker (Super)Man!
In sum, this episode was cornball fun. Granny Goodness shows up next episode. Just as Glorious Godfrey was a right-wing talk show host, I hope she's reimagined as an angry pro-abstinence crusader who punishes our heroes for Kryptonian fornication.

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