Smallville

Season 7 Episode 14

Traveler

1
Aired Friday 8:00 PM Mar 20, 2008 on The CW
SUBMIT REVIEW

Episode Fan Reviews (35)

9.3
out of 10
Average
683 votes
  • Lionel detects threats to Clark, and takes dangerous steps to protect him through imprisonment, while Lana and Chloe try for a rescue by attempting to restore Kara to her former self.

    8.5
    Lionel receives a sealed letter in his office, but we get no clue to the contents, only that it's somehow disturbing, but the scene is nicely synchronized with an operatic aria. A shift to the farm has Clark checking the location of the spaceship/cave key in it's hiding place. Somehow a gang of armed kidnappers appear and fire into Clark a number of green electrodes which pump him with meteor rock fluid - he's paralyzed into submission, as the bad guys surround him in a circle with their automatic weapons all aimed at one another. If they fired, Clark wouldn't be the one to be hurt, so this is all for dramatic effect. And how could Clark be taken by surprise in this manner - he didn't even super-hear this crowd come into the barn?

    Continuing the story from last week, Lana and Chloe recite dialog telling us that Clark intended to go to the Fortress to help restore Kara's identity. Chloe finds the key is still in the barn, so Clark did not get to the Fortress - Lana finds one of the taser-injectors used to subdue him. By now, Clark is in a small cell with bars which activate to green to confine him. He bleeds, he cannot escape, and the voltage is ramped up by his captor.

    Lionel helos to a pad in Metropolis, where he's met by Patricia Swann, whom he identifies as the daughter of Virgil Swann, the discoverer of Kal-El and the one who pushed Clark toward his destiny in Season 3. She has now received all the results of her father's research, and has been sending Lionel cryptic messages about it. She refers to the "Traveler," from another galaxy, who landed in Smallville in a meteor shower. Several families were involved in this discovery - Swann, the Queens, the Teagues, and...Lionel, who tries hard to deny all this. Patricia presses on - the four families formed "Veritas," an organization to protect the Traveler. This is a huge backstory - can all of it be found plausible given the many other storylines that have unfolded about these characters? The others all died, except Lionel - she accuses him of their murders to gain control of the Traveler for his own purposes. She threatens to release evidence linking him to the murders, unless Lionel takes her to the Traveler. He stonewalls her and departs.

    Kara is next for an update on her amnesia - someone has created en entire identity for her, school annuals, personal history, and more, but she tells Lex she does not feel that she was that person. Lex proposes a study by his neurologists, as he appeals for her trust. She agrees. Lex orders the tests to start immediately.

    Clark is still being tortured, when Lionel bursts in - it's shocking to find that he is the head kidnapper, but he wants no torture. He'd better have some pretty good reasons for all of this, or I'm going to start thinking badly of Lionel again. He's a bag of lies when Lana and Chloe later enter his office with the electrode. Lionel deflects their investigation by promising to look into a secret lab where Clark may be hidden, at LX Dynamics. By now, the various plots are getting so complicated that Lana and Chloe are given lengthy dialog to explain everything that has happened.

    Lana and Chloe hatch a plot to use Kara to rescue Clark by taking her to the Fortress for help from Jor-El. But first, how to get her out of Lex's clutches? He's busy with another visitor, Patricia, who looks much different than in earlier scenes. They have a bit of childhood history, and she gives him a drawing he made for her when young, which looks like kryptonian symbols; Lex does not remember. She's setting him up with stories of the "astronomy club" that Lionel used as a cover for Veritas.

    Lex is interested, and to his credit, shows Lionel the drawing and gives him the story as he heard it from Patricia. Lionel continues his denials; Lex asks why he killed the others. Lex leaves to get more information from Patricia - Lionel calls her, ready to make a deal.

    Lana and Chloe successfully defeat the mansion security and ask Kara to go with them, as Lex tries a lockdown, but Kara is gone. Back at the warehouse, Clark's torturer is pushing harder. Without the intervening step of the key and the cave, Chloe and Kara have transported to the Fortress, where Chloe calls out for Jor-El's help, and at last Kara is lifted by a shaft of light and her memory is restored. "Clark needs our help," Chloe tells her.

    In another surprising scene, Patricia is brought to the lab, where Lionel asks for her damning evidence against him, while she asks to see the Traveler. She sees Clark, imprisoned and suffering, and wants to meet him face to face. But that's not going to happen; Lionel's guard clubs her to the floor, and Lionel orders her sent home to Europe, and Clark sent back to the farm. But in a change of plans, head goon turns rogue, and pulls a gun on Lionel, threatening to terminate Clark. He bashes Lionel and ups the voltage on Clark, whereupon Kara to the rescue! She's a one-gal wrecking crew, blowing in the wall, zapping the controls with heat-vision, and ripping out the cage to free Clark. But the guard isn't done yet - he aims his weapon, requiring one more dramatic rescue, by Lionel!

    The wrapup is going to have to be extra long in this episode with so many hidden agendas. Patricia is at the farm with Clark, so she recovered from her head injury, and has her father's journal for him. It's filled with data and kryptonian symbols, referring to the Traveler. Can Clark live up to those prophesies from Krypton? She explains that Lionel is behind the murders - and one of many who would exploit Clark.

    Back at Luthorcorp, we have one more chance to learn what Lionel is up to, when Clark appears. Lionel claims to have been protecting Clark against potential threats, and that he built the cell to imprison other Travelers. But Clark is seeing Lionel as a never-ending threat. Lionel: "I'm a different man." Clark: "No, you're not." That sounds final, but Lionel will have more chances in the future to explain his motivations.

    At the barn, Clark returns Kara's bracelet, and tells her the Luthors are a lost cause, capable of doing the right thing only when it benefits them. Bad scene for an ending - on a bridge near Metropolis, Patricia is murdered by her driver - who was behind it? We see Lex wiping blood from her necklace, as he gazes at his childhood drawing. A shame to end this way, as the Patricia character was engaging and interesting, and would have created an opportunity for some good story lines. Still, it's good drama, although Mr. Welling gets to do little but writhe in agony for the entire episode, while Mr. Glover gets most of the good acting opportunities. Depending on how future episodes carry on with the Veritas story line, this might be a must-see. Re-run rating B.
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