Smallville

Season 9 Episode 2

Metallo

2
Aired Friday 8:00 PM Oct 02, 2009 on The CW
AIRED:
9.0
out of 10
User Rating
531 votes
21

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Lois' new colleague, John Corben, undergoes a horrific transformation when he awakens from an accident with superhuman strength and a heart made of kryptonite. Determined to use his new power to further his vendetta against the Blur, Corben sets out to kill the vigilante. However, the situation becomes even more complicated when Lois' own investigation leads her into Corben's hands.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • Lois' new colleague, John Corben, undergoes a horrific transformation when he awakens from an accident with superhuman strength and a heart made of kryptonite.

    5.5
    I guess I can't be too surprised that fans would give a show that is obviously suffering in each episode such high scores when there was nothing outstanding about the episode.



    Like someone else has said, they really do need to drop the "Blur" deal, it's so old and lame. It would've been nice to see Mettallo come from some other origin than having Brian Green transform into him via some truck accident out of all things. The plot was just horribly unbelievable.



    Someone actually praised Green for his performance while I see the whole cast suffering from taking the show too seriously or giving their best. Watching the performances reminds me of lost souls begging on the inside to be found. Nothing about the performances came through to me...no one touched me in the emotions they attempted to display.



    The hospital reaction to Metallo coming in was horrific but I'm not too surprised given the overall problem of this show. Another thing that's punishing this show weekly is the lack of good writing. The telegraphed non-climatic scenes are just sad. It's sad to be able to foresee the entire show without much thought whatsoever.



    This reminds me of watching today's horror flicks where there's no surprises or shocks whatsoever. On top of that you have the "Smallville typical" horrific jokes/humor. "Take it easy chip n dale...." come on..surely there's something is better than that out there.



    The battle with Mettallo was sorry, uneventful, and part silly. I just don't feel this show is worthy of being designated the formation of what will become SUPERMAN. I had high hopes for the concept but it failed miserably.



    I know I know, why do I watch right...well soon I'll depart with this show lest I be hammered by the hardcore fans.moreless
  • 902

    7.8
    A good episode of Smallville, still not where the show needs to be right now, but it was still a good episode. We see something that is used a lot in the earlier episodes: meteor freaks. And you know you're watching a good episode of Smallville when there is a villain, and Clark saves the day in the end, a classic plot line for Smallville.



    Chloe got more screen time which is always good, and her scenes with Clark were just about the best things about this episode, with great character development. I know everyone must love the Clark/Lois pairing, but I just can't warm up to these two. Them falling in love was so out of the blue. When Lois said it snuck up on her last season, I think she meant someone put someone put something in her drink, 'cause I'm not seeing these two together, no on screen chemistry from what I've seen. The Metallo villain was interesting, and I liked how it connected to the Marvel universe.



    So overall a good episode of Smallville with some classic elements from the past seasons, still not where the show needs to be right now.moreless
  • Brian Austin Green's astonishing performance, John Corben's sad story, smooth editing, unexpected character development, superficial morality but numerous bitter sweet scenes

    9.0
    As expected the major event was John Corben becoming Metallo. All I can say is that his story was really heartbreaking and the first minutes were so bloody and sad that I almost cried like a little shrimp. In fact I can't remember a Smallville episode that was so tragic. Moreover in Savior I think Brian Austin Green convinced every viewers that he's a talented actor but in Metallo I think he just deserves an award. His performance was just mesmerizing. Some people might think that playing John Corben is an easy role but I don't think a character's story has to be surreal to make it believable. Keep it simply human. That's why Metallo's metaphor is so fascinating, because he reminds us what makes a human : Emotions. Unable to control them he became obsessed with finding the Blur, seeing him as the villain at the origin of all his sorrow. In fact it might surprise you but I sort of agree with him because his interactions with Lois and the Blur revealed how less the writers care about morality. At times it's obvious they choose the easy way out instead of bringing more depth to the characters and maturity to the story. Of course they didn't know John's story like we do but it's too easy to forget the human flesh behind the metal heart, specially when you have special abilities. That's why I found the last scenes quite controversial. John Corben didn't deserve what happened to him. I wish they had find a way to save him, like they tried to save Davis Bloome (Doomsday).



    About the Clark, Chloe and Lois triangle. In Savior their relationships were blurry and all the characters felt lost. So their evolution in this episode was logic but I didn't anticipate that it would turn so well. From the dialogs, fashion styles to the acting it was just great. Chloe's new role is also quite surprising because she used to be Clark's sidekick after all. So it brings an other layer to our favorite hacker. Lois double investigation was also quite interesting because in the one hand she was trying to know what happened to Clark and in the other hand she was searching for a heartless bastard, that's how she described the cyborg. It was a smart design by the writers because it revealed how much she cares about him and how much she misses him. But of course like many people she's scared of her own feelings so she shadows them. She keeps finding excuses and doesn't admit that she's actually in love with… Tess Mercer !



    What ? Yes their scene at the mansion was just pure insanity and should definitely convince the male audience to stick around a little longer. In my Injustice review I mentionned fans weren't ready to view both Erica Durance and Cassidy Freeman in the same scene but the next episode, Doomsday, we saw them cat fighting at The Daily Planet. This time it was a calmer encounter but you could feel the tension between them. No mud pool around but considering Tess was sweating while bashing a boxing bag with a long stick I let you make your own opinion on the meaning behind it. Just a few words to entertain and show how much I loved this episode. The Watch Tower scene was cold but optimistic, Lois had an other vision, RoboCop and Terminator references, Zod behind Metallo… It was so wise to leave that arc for the other episodes but still relate it to this one story.



    So overall it was nearly a perfect episode. Seriously how can you resist Smallville anymore ? To conclude this review, thanks to a peer, I had the strangest idea ever. So let's hear what Phil Connors from the film Groundhog Day has to say about this season : « When I saw the long 7th season, I saw a season bleak and dark and bereft of hope. Yet we know that a season is just another step in the cycle of Smallville. But standing here among my peers and basking in the warmth of their hearths and hearts, I couldn't imagine a better fate than a long and lustrous 9th season. » (Source : Wikiquote).moreless
  • After getting run over by a truck, John Corben is abducted by the Kandorians and given a heart made of kryptonite. Meanwhile, Clark decides to resume his double life working at the Daily Planet.moreless

    9.0
    Lemme just start off by saying that I really didn't like John Corben, and I'm glad Lois refused to fall for any of his "charm" (especially since we all know she's destined for Clark). However, I *did* like how they wrapped up his storyline (at least until UPGRADE), and that they actually explained why he has a grudge against The Blur. Granted, it's a stupid reason, but at least it's laid out there for us. Anyway, moving on. I also liked -- nay, *loved* -- the Clois moments, particularly when Clark saved Lois yet again, and that Clark came to his senses and returned to the Daily Planet. I figured he would in the premiere, but then when he didn't, I got worried. Thankfully, my worries were for nothing. By the way, the high collar, for some reason, works for Clark, though strangely enough, I originally thought it was horrid in the premiere. Oh, well. All in all, I give METALLO nine kryptonite hearts out of ten.



    Highlights -- Clark listening to the sounds of the city from atop the Daily Planet; more of Lois's dream of the future; Clark enlisting Lois's help, then Lois trying to figure out who's missing their keys; Lois trying to warn The Blur about Corben; Clark admitting to Chloe that talking with Lois "felt right"; Clark fighting Corben and rescuing Lois; and finally, Clark returning to the Daily Planet, only to receive a hug from Lois and have to hear the story of how Lois helped The Blur.moreless
  • The second episode of the season builds and improves upon the premiere.

    8.0
    Brian Austin Green only had two scenes as John Corben in the premiere but he was great in both of them. It was nice to give him a bit of set up before going into this episode as it helped to make him feel like more than just a meteor freak, which would've been undeserving for the character of Metallo. It also meant that we could get right into him being the cyborg villain. It was clear from the previous episode he liked Lois (as anyone with eyes would) and the opening scene here did well to continue that. He came off as a bit smug, but in a nice way. It can be a dangerous thing to pull off, but a combination of good writing and expert acting made him charming rather than sleazy.



    Things all changed when he was hit by a truck though, which thankfully didn't do the cheap movie trick of not hearing it until it was just off-screen. That you heard it coming all the way made it far more legitimate as well as established that the mystery woman in John's picture meant a lot to him that he'd wander into the street without thinking. Him lying in a puddle of blood while the camera kept blacking out felt like Smallville trying a bit too hard to be arty, but it ultimately worked. As for the design on Metallo, well the show did a fantastic job. After managing to do Doomsday justice (visually at least) last year they're obviously confident about trying other prosthetic heavy characters. It'd be interesting to see what Cyborg would look like if he was introduced this season… The pistons on his limbs looked and sounded awesome, and while the chest piece was a bit similar to Iron Man the cables and pipes coming out of it worked brilliantly to give a unique appearance.



    As with last week Lois got most of the screen time and again she was worthy of it. Her reaction to the Blur does come off a bit like a school girl crush, but it works because we know how tough a character she is. So for her to be acting like this over a guy you know he's something special (which obviously he is) and it legitimises it. That said her acting as the Blur's wannabe side-kick didn't fully work. It was cool that Clark brought her into the main story nicely and made sense from his perspective but still came off as a bit cheesy for me. Another thing that I found a bit off was Clark superspeeding into Dr. Hamilton's office. I can't remember them having a scene together before (although I'm sure I'm wrong) but I guess he works with Oliver and Chloe so we know he's a good guy. It was just a weird visual to have Clark happily chatting with someone he doesn't really know about his powers etc.



    I was kinda expecting there to be a cool reveal as to who saved Corben and so was a bit disappointed that it was left slightly unresolved. The strong implication was that it had something to do with Zod and hopefully more will come of that down the line. The mystery still kind of worked well as it gave Tess a good motivation for the episode and what screentime she had she used well, even though her new geeky assistant was a bit annoying.



    Chloe and Clark's relationship doesn't look like mending anytime soon which is a good thing. Having been a bit of a crutch for Clark in recent years the change in dynamic has worked well for both characters. And it meant that Chloe could have a go at Clark here by pointing out that he still hasn't fully left his old life behind. The "feeding the dog is about as human as it gets line" was actually a really good one and summed up everything nicely.



    But the star of the show this week was John Corben and pretty much everything he did was great. At first I was annoyed that he didn't just come out and explain what happened to his mystery woman, or even who she was. But revealing it slowly through the episode worked well to build up to the final scene where he explained how he held Clark accountable for her death. I also loved the logic for how this seemingly nice guy could become a psychopath. The Kryptonite poisoning his mind worked from a logic standpoint, as well as the idea of his heart being removed. Some of his lines when realising he wanted to kill the Blur were a bit over the top, but it worked and they were still well delivered. Again a lot needs to be said about the visuals for Metallo; the glowing light effect worked brilliantly when he was coming up behind Lois in the phone booth and again later with Clark.



    I was a bit worried about how Clark and Corben's showdown would go. Was Clark going to have to be backing off from him for the whole fight or would he be stupid enough to walk right into the range of the Kryptonite? Fortunately neither was the case and it ended up being a great action sequence. The electromagnetic bomb was a decent idea and it looked awesome the way it detonated in slow motion. While I get that it could override the robotics in his body I'm not sure how it disabled the Kryptonite. Still it worked but would've been a poor ending if that had been it. But then he got back up and threw Clark about before threatening to kill Lois. And after complaining about not seeing Clark's heat vision last week we got it done very coolly here. Melting the lead enough to be able to stick it to Corben's chest was awesome, as was Clark's stumbled superspeed run as he got close to the Kryptonite before blocking the radiation. It also resulted in Corben defeating himself by accidentally ripping his Kryptonite heart out. It was a slightly typical Smallville-type ending, but it worked.



    So this was a very successful and entertaining episode. Metallo was a cool enemy to have to kick-start the season and he was handled brilliantly. I also liked that they never called him "Metallo". They tend to use the proper names for the DC characters these days, but I think in this case not even having a reference to it was the right way to go. Considering the fairly dark story it would've come off as a bit silly. As well as the cyborg villain we got a nice scene between Clark and Lois when he returned to the Daily Planet and a pretty cool cliffhanger ending that will hopefully work well with the season's main story arc.moreless
Ryan McDonell

Ryan McDonell

Stuart

Guest Star

Robert Moloney

Robert Moloney

Daily Planet Employee

Guest Star

Chaz Chamberlain

Chaz Chamberlain

Daily Planet Employee

Guest Star

Stephen Lobo

Stephen Lobo

Randall Brady

Recurring Role

Alessandro Juliani

Alessandro Juliani

Dr. Emil Hamilton

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (4)

    • Lois still refers to Shelby as a "she."

    • When Lois is fighting with John Corben and he throws her, the "metal" pipes she is thrown into are flattened when she falls on top of them on the floor.

    • When John Corben was "deactivated" by the EMP blast, Clark should have still been feeling the effects of the kryptonite as it was still in John's chest.

    • The writers seem to have forgotten that Lois is allergic to dogs. She happily hugs and sleeps near Shelby in the Kent home without sneezing or showing any other symptoms.

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Lois: Are you still at the office?
      Corben: No, no. Sitting behind a desk just isn't the same without those pretty brown eyes of yours--I don't know--glaring at me.

    • Clark: I told you--there is no Clark Kent.
      Chloe: No disrespect to your Kryptonian calling, but coming back to feed the dog is about as human as it gets.

    • Lois: I just came to tell you that I'm not leaving the Daily Planet.
      Tess: You were never leaving, Lois. I fired you.
      Lois: Well, I'm not going to get into the whole "she said, she said" thing with you.

    • Dr. Hamilton: (as Clark superspeeds in) I understand it took Chloe... years to get used to your entrances.

    • Lois: Well, it looks like the night shift finally clocked in. What happened--try to shave in your sleep?
      Corben: Why do the electronic records in this place only go back a year?
      Lois: Hello. Lois. Banter, banter, banter. What happened, did your snappy patter set with the sun?
      Corben: Where are the records?!?
      Lois: A little less snap and a little more patter, please.

    • Corben: (to Clark) Control myself? That's easy for you to say. It doesn't take... much to stay in control when you watch from the shadows. You stand apart from the world... while the rest of us live in it. Even when it breaks your heart.

    • Lois: Clark Kent. You're back. I was beginning to think your family lived on some distant planet.
      Clark: Must have really missed me.
      Lois: Uh, only because the guy who sat in your desk was a certifiable psychopath. Otherwise, I've been so busy, I didn't even notice you were gone.
      Clark: Missed you, too, Lois.

  • NOTES (4)

    • Brian Austin Green is credited as Special Guest Star.

    • Injoke: In her dream, Lois sees a torn cape with the "S" symbol on it, hanging from a post. That image exactly is the one that appears on the cover of the original "Doomsday" arc comic book The Death of Superman (Superman #75).

    • Callum Blue and Justin Hartley are credited but don't appear.

    • International Airdates:
      UK: June 1, 2010 on E4/E4 HD
      Sweden: June 11, 2010 on TV6
      Turkey: January 23, 2011 on CNBC-e
      Norway: February 13, 2011 on Max
      Czech Republic: September 26, 2011 on TV Nova

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • Lois: Hunting down a real-life Terminator.
      Referencing the movie/TV franchise starting with the 1984 movie The Terminator, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as a cyborg sent back from the future to make sure that humans don't successfully rebel against machines that have conquered the planet in its own time. As of the time this episode premiered, it spawned three movie sequels and a TV series, which Brian Austin Green (Corben) starred on.

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