Smallville

Season 5 Episode 18

Fragile

2
Aired Friday 8:00 PM Apr 13, 2006 on The CW
9.0
out of 10
User Rating
805 votes
70

EPISODE REVIEWS
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Episode Summary

EDIT
Clark befriends a little girl who has the ability to telekinetically shatter glass, then comes to her aid when it's believed she killed her mother in a brutal stabbing attack. Meanwhile Lex and Lana grow closer together and Chloe finds out about it.

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • This was one of my favorite episodes of the season. I especially loved the lex and lana kiss.

    9.5
    In the beggining when the girl was breaking the glass ihonestly thought she really broke all those windows but ehen she told clark she couldn't do it through her i realized it must be someone with the same powers.One of my favorite parts of the episoe was when lex and lana came back from dinner. You could clearly tell they were throwing themselves at each other. If chole hadn't walked in when she di something would have happned. This episode showed clark's fatherly and also brotherly side. I think the little girl had a crush on him. Clark is gonna be a great father one day. At the end in lex's mansion youcan see how lana isdying to kiss him back after he kisses her and she does. I don't believe they are going to take this relationship where it needs to go.



    moreless
  • It's A Bird...It's A Plane...It's..Glass Man and Shatter Girl?

    5.5
    Fragile-Clark befriends a little girl who has the ability to telekinetically shatter glass, then comes to her aid when it's believed she killed her mother in a brutal stabbing attack. Meanwhile Lex and Lana grow closer together and Chloe finds out about it.



    Pretty much known for the directorial debut of Tom Welling and another development that I can barely stomach at the moment, "Fragile" is a "fragile" episode itself. The main plot is one we've seen already on Smallville and done a hell of a lot better (Stray and Ryan). Clark comes to the aid of a young kid who he protects and nurtures etc. they get close etc. the kid doesn't want to leave and wants to stay with Cark etc....we get it! It wasn't that I didn't care for Maddie and her father or the actors in the roles. It's just as soon as I found out they have the power to control glass is where I lost interest. Now we've seen meteor freaks with some lame abilities (that guy who can travel between frequencies in "Static" anyone?) But the power to control glass seems like one of the worst power based characters the writers have thought off. That power doesn't even seem that threatening, especially against Clark. Just put the kid in an environment with no glass...problem solved!



    Tom Welling does an average job of directing, although he has one moment of greatness with the SFX scene of Maddie controlling pieces of glass to protect Clark. But even that couldn't take away from the birth of Lexana! The scenes of those two developing their romance (if you can even call it that!) made me throw up in my mouth more than a bit. I'm glad Chloe tried to light a fire up Lex's ass about getting involved with Lana. But even that couldn't stop from the disgusting ending where Lex and Lana share a kiss which seems so forced, your wondering if the Michael and Kristin were even disgusted doing it! "Fragile" falls to pieces down right to its cringe-worthy end!moreless
  • The little girl who knew how to shatter glass. Lana and Lex get a little bit close together. A Fair episode, nothing to great.

    6.0
    The episode is another fair episode from Smallville and Tom Welling's first directional appearance. This episode of Smallville features another telekinetic character, a young girl who knows how to shatter glass. The girl, Maddie (Emily Hirst) is Clark Kent's suspect of the murder of Naomi, Maddie's foster mother. Then the second story revolves on Lana and Lex, Chloe is not to fond of the fact that Lex is using Lana's devastation from her recent break up with Clark. The episode ends with a kiss between Lana and Lex, Will romance spark between the two of them? Who knows? Next on Smallville.moreless
  • A young girl named Maddie comes into the Kent home after her foster mother is killed. She is found to have the ability to shatter glass with her mind, challenging Clark to help her control her power.moreless

    8.5
    A new character is introduced, Maddie (played by Emily Hirst), a pre-teen with an attitude of hostility and silence toward her foster parent Naomi, who is Martha's Chief of Staff. When Mattie is stressed or angry, she shatters glass with her mind, terrorizing all around her. The ability frightens Maddie, too, who is not entirely in control of this power. A wild breakage scene ensues - all the glass in the kitchen explodes in flying shards, as Maddie hides in her room, and her foster Mom is killed by the impacts.



    A Deputy brings Maddie to the Kent household temporarily, while they investigate the death. Child Services is to visit the next day, so that loose end is wrapped up quickly. Maddie has not spoken since age 3, Martha has learned, when her birth mother was killed. Clark takes some initiative by befriending Maddie as a fellow artist - as Clark produces a really nice stick figure, to Maddie's amusement.



    Lex and Lana are at the dorm talking about Milton Fine and classified documents he gave Lex about an alien invasion. They even trust each other. When Chloe comes in, she sees them together, and begins to believe that there is something between the two.



    Clark shows Maddie around the farm, entertaining her with some speedy tricks, and revealing that he was an orphan too. Maddie takes to good ol' Shelby the dog, and Clark hears her talking quietly to him. Suddenly she's talking to Clark. Lois drops in at the request of Martha, and Maddie puts on a quick glass-shattering demo. End of happy day. She's upset and confused by her powers, which Clark tries to understand. Miss Hirst is doing some pretty fine acting here - tears on demand, and impressive emotional power. She denies killing Naomi because she can't break glass in another room.



    Lois wants to call the police; Clark stalls her, and goes to see Chloe for some investigative journalism. Old news sources show Maddie's mother died from a shattered windshield; was Maddie to blame? Clark begins to doubt. Lois gamely tries to take Maddie out for a picnic lunch, but when Maddie gets a mad on, Lois is barely able to calm her down.



    Child Services show up to take Maddie; she refuses, while Lois warns the CPS man about the glass danger. Suddenly there's another man in the background, and every window in the Ford Taurus is blown, killing the CPS rep. The stranger drives off with Maddie - it's her father, and Lois has a number of shards in her back. Back to the hospital, where she and Clark try to identify the unknown assailant. Things seem better when those two collaborate, and frankly, Clark and Lois are getting easier to watch than Clark and Lana. Maddie's dad Tyler McKnight was just released from Belle Reve, and show that he, too, can manipulate glass. He wants his daughter back, but Maddie realizes that he killed her mother, Naomi and the CPS worker. She's powerless at the moment, and Tyler steals a Ford Galaxie, and they leave the Taurus by the road.



    Chloe has now found that Maddie's dad was in a glass shop when the meteor shower hit, thus his powers. He was also a jewel thief, escaping with several diamonds. Chloe finds his former address; Clark goes there, finding Maddie's grandmother, who did not even know Maddie existed. Tyler hid the diamonds at the Talon in a stained glass frame, and attempts to retrieve them with Maddie. But she won't go along Tyler's plans for their new life, and Clark intervenes and stops Tyler cold.



    Lana talks to Chloe at the Planet, irritated that Chloe has interfered with her personal affairs, but Lana denies having a "love life" with Lex. Has Chloe sensed something that was not there? Nah.



    Chloe bursts in on Lex to chastise him for taking advantage of Lana when she's vulnerable. He asserts they are friends, nothing more, but Chloe is pretty protective. Lex jabs her about never having a boyfriend, perhaps a sensitive subject for her.



    Clark and Lois are spending more time together as she heals from her wounds. Martha is back, and has chosen Lois to be her Chief of Staff. Guess she'll accept, but wouldn't that mean a move to Topeka and less of Lois in the scripts?



    McKnight is in custody, but the unfortunate Deputy is wearing glasses as he enters the elevator with the cuffed McKnight. Ugh, that was a nasty scene, but original, and Tyler is on the loose again.



    Thinking everything is at peace, Maddie, now looking far better, is even helping clean the Kent house. She wants to stay with him, but Clark tells her she has a grandmother. Nicely done emotional expression by Miss Hirst; we can sense see her pain and anxiety. That evening, glass is breaking around the house - Martha is trapped by McKnight, threatened by a hovering shard of glass, but Clark and Maddie come to the rescue; her power is superior to her father's, and she takes control of the floating glass and turns it against her father. She can kill him, but Clark talks her through this crisis, helping her to make the right decision rather than simply stepping in with his powers to end the standoff. Maddie is mature beyond her years, but what a friend she has in Clark.



    Maddie's grandmother arrives in her Jeep Cherokee to take custody of Maddie, and Clark assures her of his continuing friendship. An impressive acting job by the young Miss Hirst, not too schmaltzy, just warm and hopeful, there in the yellow sun at the Kent farm.



    At the Planet, Chloe thinks she'll always have a source of news at the state house with Lois working for Martha there. However, when Clark asks her about the fracas with Lana, Chloe denies hiding anything from Clark. While Chloe is right to stay out of the middle of the Lana-Clark relationship, why protect Lex? We know that development will become clear to Clark eventually.



    Lana stops to see Lex to "set the record straight." He assures her that they're both on the same page as far as a friendship is concerned. So they both feel the same...right? Oops, the moment seems emotionally right for a brief kiss. What just happened? Looks like Lana really does not know what she is feeling, but turns on the passion, gives Lex a deep kiss, and she's gone.



    "Fragile" is a very good production by the whole crew, with noteworthy acting and emotional expression by Emily Hirst, making this one of the better episodes of the season. The Lana - Lex relationship is progressing so Smallville fans need to see this one to keep up with this dramatic turn. Re-run rating B.moreless
  • He understands the burden of unusual powers. Clark befriends a troubled girl who has anger - and telekinetic powers that shatter glass - she can't control. Suspicions about Lex and Lana may be right.moreless

    10
    This is my favourite episode of season 5. Maddie hasn't spoken since her mum died in a freak car accident when she was three, instead she draws. She has the power to shatter glass and when she gets angry she can't control it. Maddie's power is second generation because her dad also has the power to shatter glass. Maddie's dad killed Naomi and also killed Maddie's real mother when he wasn't allowed to see her, He was put in bellreeve after stealing 6 diamonds which he put into a painting which now hangs in the talon. Maddie starts to talk when Clark tells her that he would never insult her but Maddie dosen't like lois. In the end Maddie wants to stay with Clark and when he tells her she has a grandmother that she is going to live with, the glass of orange juice shakes and Clark manages to calm Maddie down before it breaks and all ends well.moreless
Tom Welling

Tom Welling

Clark Kent/Kal-El of Krypton

Kristin Kreuk

Kristin Kreuk

Lana Lang

Michael Rosenbaum

Michael Rosenbaum

Alexander ('Lex') Joseph Luthor

Allison Mack

Allison Mack

Chloe Sullivan

Erica Durance

Erica Durance

Lois Lane

Annette O'Toole

Annette O'Toole

Martha Clark Kent

Callum Keith Rennie

Callum Keith Rennie

Tyler McKnight

Guest Star

James Upton

James Upton

Frank Colbert

Guest Star

Maxine Miller

Maxine Miller

Mrs. McKnight

Guest Star

Bud the Dog

Bud the Dog

Shelby

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (9)

    • Trivia: Tyler McKnight's mother's address is: 145 Hastings Road, Smallville, Kansas.

    • When the overbearing presence of Lois has caused Maddie to go telekinetic within seconds of them meeting, why would Clark then ask them to spend the next hour together in a house full of glass?

    • The DWP in Kansas is the Department of Wildlife and Parks, which has nothing to do with electricity. However, it is consistent with the reference in "Ageless."

    • Trivia: Lex Luthor uses American OnLine (AOL) on his laptop when Chloe enters the room in his mansion.

    • When all the windows of the car shatter and fly outward, it shows an aerial view of Lois falling to her side, with nothing near her. Then, when it shows a close-up of her, it shows that she had landed right near a fence.

    • When Tyler is captured the first time why didn't Clark tell the authorities about Tyler's power? He apparently didn't because the cop wouldn't have been wearing glasses if he knew.

    • Automotive glass doesn't break into pointy pieces that can pierce skin. It's designed to split along fissures and fracture into small blunt bits, to minimize injury in crashes from flying shards.

    • Tyler knows that Clark has enough strength to throw him clear across a room and can do...something with his eyes that causes things to heat up. It's noble of Clark to talk Maddie out of killing Tyler, but he can easily blow Clark's secret and has no reason not to.

    • After a great deal of glass magically shatters around her, why does Naomi walk up to the violently trembling mirror and just stand in front of it waiting for it to explode?

  • QUOTES (6)

    • Clark: And this is the world famous Kent Barn!

    • Clark: Chloe, if my parents hadn't found me in that field, that could have been me in the foster care system, scaring people with my powers, being accused of crimes I didn't commit.
      Chloe: Yeah, and Clark, one of your greatest powers is your unrelenting faith in people.

    • Lex: I think your reporter's eye is getting a little cloudy. You're starting to see things that aren't there.
      Chloe: I don't have to work for the DWP to know there was enough electricity in that room to light up the entire state of Kansas.

    • Chloe: I know you're used to getting whatever you want without even thinking about the consequences, but I promise you if you hurt my friend there will be a consequence. And you're looking at her.
      Lex: Chloe…I think I'm getting an inkling why you've never had a boyfriend.

    • Clark: Did you get a good look at the guy?
      Lois: Uh, like I told the sheriff, mid-thirties, sandy blonde hair, good-looking in that psycho-killer kind of way.

    • Maddie: Clark, did you ever meet your real dad?
      Clark: Sort of…
      Maddie: Was he bad like mine?
      Clark: Maybe worse. But just because he gave me life doesn't mean I'm anything like him. See, the thing is, Maddie, anyone can be a father, but it takes someone special to be a dad.

  • NOTES (4)

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • Lois: That girl's one step short of the demon seed.
      A reference to the 1977 film starring Julie Christie, based on a book by Dean Koontz, about a woman who is impregnated by a "thinking" computer and produces a child who is the embodiment of that computer.

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