Season 5 Episode 2


Aired Friday 8:00 PM Oct 06, 2005 on The CW
out of 10
User Rating
1,240 votes

By Users

Episode Summary

Jor-El strips Clark of his power, leaving his son free to pursue a "normal" life. But when those closest to him are taken hostage to force him to recover a serum from LuthorCorp's Level 3, Clark must save the day without his superhuman abilities.

Who was the Episode MVP ?

No results found.
No results found.
No results found.
  • Average Joe Saves The Day!

    Mortal-Jor-El strips Clark of his power, leaving his son free to pursue a "normal" life. But when those closest to him are taken hostage to force him to recover a serum from LuthorCorp's Level 3, Clark must save the day without his superhuman abilities. For an episode that features our main hero powerless for an entire episode sounds pretty dull, especially since we've seen Clark powerless before! But "Mortal" maintains some good momentum with its freak of the week storyline and has great developments along the way. Most meteor freaks turn out to be crappy villains, but I was actually surprised that enjoy the characters of Lee and infamous Albino twins. They actually had good motives with their connections to 33.1 and the hostage situation provided tension that we can take seriously. Not to mention, their powers brought some cool special effects like Lee's energy balls and the twins' force field. My favorite aspect of "Mortal" is Clark and Chloe working to save the day for the first time. Their scenes together were so entertaining and it's great seeing this new side of their friendship. I also loved how Chloe reacted when she found out Clark told Pete the truth about him, lol. But it's good to know that even without his powers; Clark can still save the day. The way he beats Lee and the twins shows how resourceful he is. It's refreshing to see Clark find an alternate way to save the day and it really develops his character. It also comes as a shock as Lex was behind the whole thing as a way to test Clark. The end confrontation between them was great as it's an even greater rift in their friendship that can't be repaired. Glad to see that Lex's darker side is already coming out strong and you just can't wait to see what he'll do next. The only thing this episode could have done without is Clark and Lana making out in every scene they had together, ehw! I'm just glad we didn't see the entire love scene between them at the end; I don't think I could have stomached it! "Mortal" is a cool episode that gets overlooked and badly critiqued by fans sometimes, but I find it to be a good development episode for both Clark and Lex.moreless
  • boring

    This episode really did just feel like filler, to make up the numbers for the series. I, like many others, was thrilled by the opener to the series, 'Arrival', and couldn't wait to see what happens, and then there was this. Another meteor-freak that clark had to stop, it just seemed so unoriginal. I know there will always be bad guys and superheroes but a little story line too please! On the plus side, it was interesting to see him do it without any special powers but I was just so bored. And I'm always wondering when they are going to stop with the long drawn-out love story between lana and clark its just getting annoying now. I'm patiently waiting for James Marsters to get in on the action.moreless
  • Lex releases three dangerous inmates from Belle Reve, and they take Clark and family captive to force Clark to penetrate Level 3 for a serum. Clark continues his pursuit to stay free of his former super-powers.moreless

    Back in Belle Reve, a dreadful mental institution, Lex has Lionel confined in a straitjacket, so it's turnabout from last season when Lionel had Lex in similar straits. And Lionel is back to his long-hair look. Another ugly inmate suddenly escapes from his shackles using a power ray, and frees a set of twins, played by Brad and Todd Mann, and they can stop bullets. (Would hospital guards go straight to shooting escapees?) Their destination - Smallville. At a local barn-raising which is part of the community's reconstruction after the meteor shower disaster, Clark, without his powers, struggles with strength like everyone else. Chloe questions his change to being a "normal," but Clark affirms that this is what he wants - "Destiny is another word for not having a choice," he replies. Rebuilding Smallville is credited to Lex pulling strings at FEMA (hey, they do a good job without political influence!) as Lex arrives in his Mercedes SL 500. On a romantic run back to the Kent farm, Clark and Lana try to put their mistakes behind them. How long can separated lovers last reunited? Not long - the three Belle Reve escapees interrupt them, thinking all they heard about Clark is true - but he's now powerless.

    Meanwhile, Chloe's at the caves, and Lex is there, too - he reminds her of their last cave meeting - Lex unconscious and Chloe mysteriously transported to the Arctic. Chloe counters with questions about his coverup of the spaceship crash during the recent meteor storm. Clark and escapee Lee talk about Lee's stay in Level 3, the alleged top-secret research facility at Luthorcorp. Lee demands that Clark break into Level 3 to get green rock serum for the three escapees, thinking Clark has powers - wrong. Martha and Jonathan arrive in yet another red Dodge pickup, and that makes four captives of the escapees. Clark enlists Chloe to take him to the plant - where a blank area of the floor plan has to be the infamous Level 3, and they manage to slip in unnoticed. While crawling through the typical air shaft, Clark lets slip to Chloe that Pete knows his secret, too. What secret, we ask? He's "Mortal."

    Back at the Kent farm, Sheriff Nancy arrives with siren on full blast in her gigantic Chevy Caprice. She's searching for the escapees who left their stolen car nearby - they deflect her suspicions for a moment but she calls in reinforcements. The twins, looking and acting like members of Blue Man Group, except for their color, create a force field that stops even a Caprice like a brick wall. At the plant, Chloe tells Clark to search for a big door, and they find the inner lab and the serum stash. Clark returns to the farm without the serum, but with Chloe's smoke bomb. That girl is well-equipped. Cutting the local electrical power, Clark is able to defeat their special powers, leading Sheriff Nancy to ask Clark, "Ever consider a career in law enforcement?" Bad Lex was observing Chloe and Clark on Level 3, and Clark beats up on him, knowing he released the thugs and hampered their rescue attempt. Lex hits back, drawing blood from Clark - stunning him with the thought that Clark is "normal." Lana patches up Clark, as they realized the uncertainties of tomorrow, the one thing certain is their love, at least for another episode or two. There's nothing essential in this storyline, so the re-run rating is an average C.moreless
  • Great Episode

    Lex Luthor visits Lionel in the Belle Reve Sanatorium, and pretty after three powerful criminals escape from the asylum. Meanwhile, Clark Kent is delighted, being an average Kansas farm boy and in deep love with Lana Lang. The population is rebuilding Smallville together after the meteor shower and Lana and Clark go to the barn of the Kent's farm to bring a box of nails. However, the three runaway meteor freaks arrive, kidnap Lana first and Jonathan and Martha later to force Clark to break in Luthor Corp. facility and steal a serum in Level 3. The trio is addicted in this substance that increases their abilities. Stripped of his powers, Clark asks Chloe to help him. In spite of being without power, a hero is always a hero: Clark Kent is helped by his friend Chloe and defeats the three bad guys. The second chance for his friendship with Lex Luthor is apparently over. The surprising revelations that both Clark and Lana are virgins is amazing and incredible.moreless
  • An absolute series classic. An episode of Smallville I could watch over and over again.

    'Mortal' is definitely one of my favourite episodes from season 5.

    It was always going to be interesting watching Clark trying to save the day without his super powers and he proved that he can still be a hero completely human. I enjoyed the storyline of this episode but I have to admit I would not want to be held hostage myself by those Bell Reeve freaks! The best part of the whole episode, however, was Clark and Lana finally consummating their love for each other. Wow, how long were 'Clana' fans waiting for this one? The end scene in Lana's apartment where they make love on the carpet (which was one of the most romantic things I've ever seen on any television show) was brilliantly acted and beautifully shot. Tom Welling and Kristin Kreuk have such amazing on-screen chemistry that they are a joy to watch as Clark and Lana.

    I also thought Clark's confrontation with Lex near the end was genius! The look on Lex's face when he punched Clark and saw him bleed was brilliant. I love Michael Rosenbaum, he's always done a great job portraying Lex as the villain who is most definitely Lionel Luthor's son.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

John Glover

John Glover

Lionel Luthor

Annette O'Toole

Annette O'Toole

Martha Clark Kent

Brad Mann

Brad Mann

Twin #1

Guest Star

Todd Mann

Todd Mann

Twin #2

Guest Star

Kenneth Johnson (III)

Kenneth Johnson (III)


Guest Star

Camille Mitchell

Camille Mitchell

Sheriff Nancy Adams

Recurring Role

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (14)

    • When Clark is trying to get into Level 3 thanks to the ventilation system, he seems to be speaking to Chloe very loud instead of whispering. This, and the tremendous noise he is making by simply walking into the pipes, should be more than enough to alert anyone standing beneath them.

    • When Martha and Jonathan come looking for Clark and Lana and only find Clark, he is nervously placing three planks against the wall. When the camera angle changes there are only two planks.

    • Where was Martha during the commotion at the Kents' Farm? Lee is fighting with Jonathan and the twins are fighting with Lana and yet Mrs. Kent who was there just moments ago is nowhere to be seen.

    • In the beginning of the episode when people are rebuilding the barn Lanna says that the whole town has gathered to help rebuild. However, we can clearly see that there are no more than a hundred people out there and Smallville is not that small.

    • During the confrontation between Clark and Lex, after Clark punches Lex you can see blood dripping from Lex's nose just before Clark throws Lex to the floor where he turns around and looks back at Clark, without the blood now. Lex didn't have any time to wipe the blood off from what we could see.

    • As the episode closes, we get a view of the night sky centered on the constellation Orion. However, Orion's dagger is hanging the wrong way and on the wrong side.

    • Trivia: The website Chloe visits to find the LuthorCorp schematics is http://www.publicrecords/luthorcorp_schematic&a=17d-viewfull which is of course an invalid URL.

    • Why is Lex so surprised that Clark gets burnt by the laser beams? He knows that Clark can be hurt, because it's happened before in "Pilot" and "Leech."

    • A cell phone wouldn't work inside a heavy-shielded security vault, but Lee is able to call Clark inside of it.

    • Given how hardcore she acts, and that she's on the trail of three nasty escaped criminals, why does Sheriff Adams hang out at the Kents so long? Is their coffee really that good?

    • Lee says Level 3 has all kinds of security precautions to keep people like him out. But neither we or Clark and Chloe see any of them, or any indication of any such systems. In fact, Lee and the twins seem to have the exact powers necessary to get into the vault - at least as easily as the non-powered Clark. Clark & Chloe never wonder at the lack of the security they were told would be there - it's absence should cast serious doubts on Lee's story, but they seem to still buy it.

    • Why were the lasers still present in the vault after Lex's fingerprint opened the door? What if it was Lex who was opening the door? How would he get the serum?

    • Why are the caves still so easily accessible? It's apparent that the symbols on the wall, and the dais in the once-hidden section of the cave are alien in nature. So now that it's all out in the open, why hasn't the government blocked it off and going over it with a finer tooth comb? Alternately, if Lex is still controlling the place, how does Chloe get in? Or why would he let her?

    • Chloe just had a terse conversation with Lex a few on-screen minutes earlier, where she accused Lex of secretly hiding the spaceship. Why does she possibly think it's a good idea to get hold of him to gain access to a secret facility underneath Lex's own company?

  • QUOTES (29)

    • Clark: I want our first time to be as special as you are. It's, um, it's my first time.
      Lana: It's mine too.
      Clark: You and Jason...
      Lana: No, no. You and Alicia?
      Clark: No. You are the only one I ever really loved. It's only been you, Lana.

    • Clark: After everything that's happened, I thought I knew what my life would be like now. I thought it would be easier, but I guess you can never be certain what's gonna happen tomorrow, can you?

    • Clark: (while beating on Lex) I thought we could start over, Lex, but you're too obsessed with the past, with me. But I'm different now, and I'm through playing games with you. You want to test me? Do it yourself, you coward. (Lex punches Clark, who bleeds) Satisfied?

    • Martha: (to Clark) Why is your shirt on inside out?
      Jonathan: I think I'll go check on Lana myself.
      Clark: No, wait! You guys never believe me! Why can't you just back off for five minutes?
      Martha: Clark Kent! What's gotten into you? We're not leaving until we get some answers.
      (Lee and the "wonder twins" appear with Lana)
      Lee: Yeah, boy! That ain't no way to talk to your mama.

    • (Clark shows up at Lana's apartment, bleeding)
      Lana: Clark. What happened?
      Clark: Had to say goodbye to an old friend.
      Lana: You ever heard of a handshake?

    • Chloe: Clark, are you okay?
      Clark: Yeah, super.

    • Sheriff Adams: Wait a minute. Is that coffee I smell?

    • Clark: We don't need superpowers for this. You'll get the door open and access the surveillance cameras and then loop the same empty hallway over and over...
      Chloe: Clark? That kind of hocus pocus is gonna take hours to rig up. Sometimes it's easier if you just turn off the power.

    • Chloe: We all have our secrets, Clark.

    • Clark: This is who I am now.
      Chloe: Clark, with all that you are able to do, I just can't help but think your destiny is more than just milking cows and raising barns.
      Clark: Destiny is another word for not having a choice.

    • Chloe: Are you sure this is what you really want?
      Clark: (looking over at Lana) It's what I've always wanted.
      Chloe: I was talking about you, Clark, not your feelings for Lana. I mean, one day I find out my best friend's an alien, and then the next day presto-chango, he's just your average Kansas farm boy. Excuse me if I'm finding this a little hard to accept.

    • Lee: He's got a couple of minutes. Then I am going to start killing me some people. (looking at Martha) Starting with you, Mom.

    • Lana: I can't believe a second meteor shower hit Smallville. Like the first when we were kids wasn't bad enough.
      Clark: Maybe this time it's different. Maybe it's not the end of something, but the beginning. A second chance.

    • Lex: I get the feeling I'm not her favorite person right now.
      Clark: She doesn't trust you. I'm sure you're used to that kind of reaction from people by now.

    • Chloe: Ah, the joys of manual labor.
      Clark: It's not so bad. I kind of like being sore. Makes me feel like I actually accomplished something. No pain, no gain, right?

    • Clark: Chloe, I already told him I had the serum.
      Chloe: Well, can't you call him back and see if he can give you more time?
      Clark: He's not a "more time" kind of guy.

    • Clark: I'm trying to save my parents and Lana. Please, you have to pull your men back now.
      Sheriff Adams: Last time I checked, I was the one wearing the badge and barking the orders.
      Clark: I can stop this!
      Sheriff Adams: This is not the time to be a hero.
      Clark: I'm not! Look, I... I'm just a normal guy who doesn't want to see everyone he loves die.

    • Lex: Then, why have you been avoiding me, Chloe? It's been weeks since I brought you back from that hospital in the Yukon where I found you.
      Chloe: I've been busy, Lex.
      Lex: Right, I heard being a third wheel is very time consuming.

    • Clark: We should take it slow.
      Lana: Clark, we've taken it slow for four years now.

    • Sheriff Adams: Nice work, Mr. Kent - you ever consider a career in law enforcement?

    • Lee: I guess all that talk about you is true, kid – you really are out of this world.
      Clark: You have no idea.

    • Twin #1: We...cannot...
      Twin #2: ...maintain...the field.
      Lee: The whole finishing each other's sentences is really grating on me!

    • (examining a force barrier)
      Deputy Kaiden: What the hell is this, Sheriff?
      Sheriff Adams: Another day in Smallville.

    • Clark: Hey? Is that a flash-bang grenade?
      Chloe: Oh, careful. It's a graduation present from Lois. I'm saving it for a special occasion.

    • Chloe: Now, I couldn't pull up anything called "Top Secret Evil Lab" on the schematics, but I did find this.

    • Lex: Happiness is such an elusive creature, isn't it? We all wish for it but very few ever really find it.
      Chloe: Doesn't make the search any less important.
      Lex: Or the destination.

    • Chloe: You got a better plan?
      Clark: Well, I mean, normally I'd just rip open the door, then superspeed past the security cameras, and somehow open the vault or whatever with my heat vision...
      Chloe: So what you're saying is now that you're human, you have absolutely no useful skills?
      Clark: Not so much...
      Chloe: Great. I finally have my own superhero and this is what I get.

    • Clark: Pete was a lot better at these pep talks in these situations.
      Chloe: Pete? You told Pete your secret?!?
      Clark: I kinda had to - he saw my ship.
      Chloe: Pete got to see your spaceship?!?

    • Clark: This is impossible - it's a million degrees in here!
      Chloe: Gosh, Clark, I didn't realize super-whining was one of your powers.

  • NOTES (4)


    • Lee: You ain't the only ones, Heckle and Jeckle. You keep that field up all right.
      Referencing Heckle and Jeckle, a pair of identical cartoon magpies created by Paul Terry for his studio Terrytoons. The duo debuted in 1946 in the short The Talking Magpies. One of the two spoke with a British accent and the other spoke with a Brooklyn dialect though it was never clear which magpie was Heckle and which Jeckle.

    • Chloe: What about alien Ken and Barbie? They tore apart Smallville looking for you.
      Barbie and Ken are best-selling dolls produced by the Mattel toy company. Barbie was first launched in 1959, and her companion doll Ken followed in 1961. Over the years, Barbie has been the target of much criticism stating that the doll portrays an unhealthy and unrealistic body image for women.

    • Lee: Just trying to amp up what me and the Wonder Twins could do.
      Referencing the Superfriends TV series and Zan and Jayna, two aliens who could touch hands to activate their powers. Presumably the show doesn't exist in the Smallville universe and the phrase is just a coincident. Or the show is substantially different since it wouldn't have Superman in it.

    • Chloe: I'm always up for a little Mission Impossible
      Referencing the cult TV show of a team of secret agents who go on "impossible" missions every week, which usually involved computer hacking and climbing through air vents.