Smallville

Season 9 Episode 12

Warrior

1
Aired Friday 8:00 PM Feb 12, 2010 on The CW
AIRED:
8.3
out of 10
User Rating
453 votes
24

EPISODE REVIEWS
By TV.com Users

Episode Summary

Zatanna goes to a comic book convention to find an enchanted comic book and asks Clark for his help. While Lois sees them together and becomes jealous, Chloe is rescued from an accident by a teenager who has acquired the comic book and used it to become Warrior Angel.moreless

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SUBMIT REVIEW
  • A solid episode of smallville.

    8.0
    Following the trend of season 9 this episode was a little bit disopointing but it was one of the better episodes we have seen this year so far. It was nice to see Chloe getting abit more screen time as she has been absent most of this season and it was nice to see her getting close to oliver and finally enjoying herself. Lois And Clarks relaionship continues to be enjoyable to watch mostly due to Tom Welling and Erica Durances Chemistry with one another. However the story with the magic comic was abit stupid even for Smallville standards and Zatannas reapperence was abit uneeded. All in All Warrior was not even close to being one of smallvilles best episodes but was actually pretty impressive when looking at other episodes this year.moreless
  • 912

    6.3
    Another hit and miss for Smallville, and episode with some great potential, even for a filler. Smallville has danced around the "Warrior Angel" comics when we found out Lex collected them. This episode had the potential to actually have some depth with the "Warrior Angel" series but it just failed miserably.



    Allison Mack's direction was great but the writing continues to be extremely weak and sometimes I just feeling bashing my head in when I hear some of the dialogue. I liked the interactions between Chloe & Alec, him taking her flying was something I thought I'd see her doing with Clark but this will do.



    Getting Chloe & Oliver together? Why does everyone have to have a significant other? Really? Clark & Lois, Oliver & Chloe. Both couples lack chemistry in every aspect and we saw that for both here. I think the best thing this show can do right now is to steer away from the romance and focus on better writing.



    Fair episode, I didn't expect this episode to be much, but I expected it to to at least be better than this.moreless
  • After the brilliant Absolute Justice it's understandable that this episode wouldn't be as good, but we didn't deserve this!

    5.5
    The initial setting of this story was done very well with the Met-Con. It was a bit surreal to see a convention like this within the universe of a show that so often thrives on these kinds of events. And it worked brilliantly. The combination of real sci-fi elements (like Lois' Storm Trooper) and the superheroes from within the Smallville universe (like Green Arrow) worked great and was very cool to see. The visual gag of the guy dressed in Clark's traditional red and blue was great (interesting to note this is the first season Clark's not worn that once!). Unfortunately once the actual main plot kicked in things started to go horribly wrong.



    Another thing I had a major issue with was how cheap this episode was with their effects. We had off-screen heat vision and x-ray vision, off-screen transformations from Alec into Stephen Swift, off-screen superspeed and transformation in Devilicus for Swift, usual crap looking super-hearing (or Angel hearing) effect and Zatanna's teleportation spells being off-screen just to mention a few. Sure you don't need to show everything, but at least one of those would've been nice. Still after an effects heavy episode like AJ I could've overlooked all this if the episode hadn't been as poor as it was.



    Don't get me wrong the idea of a kid transforming into an adult superhero isn't a bad one (pretty sure there's a DC character that actually does that) but it was badly handled here. I know Smallville has a wide audience and I'm sure the kid acting like a bully thing is relevant to many of the shows followers but it didn't work for me. Thing is the idea of wanting to get away from your own mundane life to do something extraordinary should be something that resonates with many people, at least at times. So the fact the main character fell so flat for me shows how badly he was written.



    Zatanna's return wasn't bad and to be fair the actress playing her was really good and she had her moments. After being basically a villain last season her change into more-or-less a hero here worked nicely. Still her worst scene by far was when she hypnotised Clark into kissing her. They completely overlooked that fact that Zatanna basically tried to rape Clark there! Sure she might not've let it go that far and the specifics as to how much control Clark had while under the spell weren't given but it was still a tasteless moment.



    It would've been ok if it'd led into some interesting stuff for Clark and Lois but it didn't. The fact that Lois knew all along what Clark had done and was waiting for him to fess up was nice, but other than that it was far too predictable. He obviously wasn't going to tell her when she first confronted him as he should have, and instead was going to eventually let her know at the end of the episode. Still the rest of their scenes together continued to be fun and well done. At least they would have if it weren't for Mark Snow's offensive bubbly, unnecessary music cues during those moments which were more off putting than usual here.



    The cursed comic book actually worked pretty well, and seemed the kind of ridiculous that still made sense you'd be more likely to see on Supernatural so that was cool. But like I said I didn't really buy him. It was nice to see Chloe able to have some fun for once as she's barely been out of Watchtower all season. So that it was really with a ten year old boy was disappointing. The guy playing Swift was pretty good to be fair, managing to let the innocence of a kid come through in all of his actions. This included the shameless plug for Xbox's Natal. I guess Ollie must know some big wigs in Microsoft to get a copy of that for Lois months before its release! Although it was maybe the perfect game to use considering the undercurrents of paedophilia when that was first demonstrated (it showed on of the developers playing with a little boy onscreen) and the fact that Chloe was trying to essentially get a minor into bed here (albeit unknown to her).



    When Swift did change after being betrayed it was fairly painful to watch. True it would've been difficult to really hold a ten year old accountable for those actions but I'd have thought Clark would've given him a bit more than a little life lesson after throwing Chloe off a building! Speaking off which Clark appeared to catch her after already leaping into the air. That would've done more damage than if she'd just hit the pavement, at least it wouldn't have been moving towards her!



    This was a pretty poor episode, but it managed to get worse in the final scene. I can understand that neither Oliver or Chloe are in the most positive places right now, so a one night stand might do them both good. Still I can't imagine Smallville going down that route. No we're more likely to see yet another relationship which will really feel forced and I don't buy at all. The final shot of the arrow flying towards camera was awful, mainly because of the angle it should've flown way past it.



    So was it all bad here. Not quite, no. The Met-Con allowed the way superheroes are perceived in the real world compared to what their fictional lives are like to come together nicely. It did give Clark a bit of insight that will hopefully allow him to have a bit of fun once in a while (as long as the super sex question is never mentioned again). Still that wasn't enough to make up for a poor main plot, off-screen effects and annoying character decisions.moreless
  • BIG: SMALLVILLE STYLE -- A boy named Alec steals a cursed comic book and transforms into Warrior Angel, while Zatanna returns and enlists Clark's help to remove the curse before it twists Alec into a villain. (WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD)moreless

    8.0
    For an episode entitled WARRIOR, you'd think it would focus on Warrior Angel, the comic book superhero the SMALLVILLE writers have loosely based upon Superman. And to an extent, it *was* about him, but unfortunately, the episode itself left a lot of potential unfulfilled. Instead, we got Zatanna's forced return (though I, like another reviewer, appreciated seeing Zatanna trying to find her footing on the side of good), and Zatanna seemingly trying to steal Clark away from Lois (and being a Clois fan, that doesn't sit well with me at all). Oh, yeah, we also got a rip-off of the Tom Hanks classic "Big". Don't get me wrong, Carlo Marks did an excellent job playing the innocent and fun-loving, yet misguided, twelve-year-old trapped in a man's body. Not to mention, he was a tad easy on the eyes (not quite the visual feast that is Tom Welling, but still..). It's just that the plot has been done to death. Anyhow, the Clois moments, few and few inbetween though they were, made up for the various flaws/complaints I mentioned above, as did the Chloe and Oliver moment at the end. Plus, I got a kick out of seeing Lois's outfits from past episodes, as well as the scenes at MetCon. Speaking of Lois's outfits, you'd think she would have planned ahead and just worn the warrior princess costume to begin with. Oh, well. All in all, I'd rate WARRIOR eight cursed comic books out of ten.



    Highlights -- Opening scene at MetCon; Clark knocking out a thug by nailing him in the head with a tin can, all while on the phone with Lois; Clark going through Lois's closet and finding past outfits; half-naked 'Warrior Angel'; Lois trying to explain the appeal of "whimsy" and fantasy to Clark; Lois taking over the mens' room so she can change, before emerging as an "Amazon Princess"; Oliver warning Clark to "duck and cover," before Lois grills Clark on Zatanna (I especially liked Clark reflexively catching Lois's phone); Clark and Lois discussing Alec, and Alec's letter to The Blur; Alec's transformation into a villain (if only for the effects); Clark ripping open his shirt to reveal the S-shield; Zatanna reversing the curse on Alec/'Warrior Angel'; Clark confessing to Lois that Zatanna kissed him, and trying to make up for it by inviting Lois to a costume ball at MetCon (even though Clark hates costumes :D -- on a side note, it's too bad we never got to see the costume Lois picked out for him); and Oliver and Chloe's archery lesson.moreless
  • How to look ridiculous

    5.0
    You have to feel sorry for Allison Mack. Tom Welling gets to co-direct one of the best episodes of "Smallville" in years, if not one of the best in the series. Allison was given this. I have to give her credit for trying, since the direction was one of the few highlights, but I can just imagine what her original reaction was to the script.



    This episode was originally meant to air before "Absolute Justice", and I think that might have served it better. It's hard to go from something as dark, stylish, and well-scripted as that event to something as mediocre and poorly-executed as this story. It also would have added a layer to the idea that the proto-Justice League needs to be more connected to one another.



    Considering that this is essentially the "Smallville" treatment of "Big", which has been done to death over the years, there's the feeling that we've seen it all before, only better. Watching Chloe come on to a 12-year-old in a superhero's body is less amusing than downright creepy. Remembering that the actress was also in charge of figuring out how to make the scene work as a director adds a completely different layer of disturbing to the entire deal.



    I was also a bit disappointed with the treatment of Zatanna. I thought her first appearance was fine, and from what I've read of the original DC character, I think this version is just fine. Serinda Swan is gorgeous, and while there is still some serious fan service going on with the costume, it's to the credit of the producers that she is showing less skin than one would otherwise expect.



    I also liked the consistent suggestion that Zatanna's ethics are a work in progress. She seems to have the big picture well in place, but her methods are less straight and narrow. Her attempted seduction of Clark, while visually enticing, also seemed to suggest a practiced technique. Some are likely to bring up the issue of consent. All of that adds up to a character that is "grey" enough to justify giving her more screen-time. (Certainly fans of fishnets wouldn't mind.)



    But her role in the plot seemed forced at best, and the whole "cursed comic book that was never read by anyone" seemed far-fetched. As a once-ravenous comic book geek, I was skeptical of any classic-era origin issue remaining sealed and unread for decades. Also, the overall solution to the Devilicus problem was another quick and easy climax. So while the character has potential, Zatanna has yet to be in an episode that fully exploits that potential.



    I was also a bit wary of how easily Clark resisted Zatanna's spell. Obviously, they didn't want to derail the Clark/Lois relationship too much, but isn't Clark supposed to be particularly vulnerable to magic? If Zatanna is really that powerful, Clark shouldn't have stood a chance. Of course, the implication is that Clark's love for Lois is strong enough to break the spell.



    Also, the writers are trying for a message, and Clark's resistance is evidence of his inability to fall into fantasy. The writers are ridiculously heavy-handed with their message: what sounds great to the comics-reading public, especially young minds wishing for power in situations where they have none, that world is rather mundane for superheroes and their friends. It's a fair point, but there had to be a better way to explore it.



    I also find it hard to believe that Clark would be that ignorant of the benefits of a healthy fantasy world. Perhaps this is meant to be a recent shift in his psychological state, but hasn't Clark entertained plenty of fantasies over the years? In fact, some episodes were built around his fantasies, as I recall. Maybe it's the fact that all of those fantasies have never come to pass. Still, with someone like Lois around, who clearly has a very healthy fantasy life (and a wardrobe to match), I doubt it will take long for Clark to see the light!



    If there was one good aspect to this episode, it was Allison Mack. Terrible episode or not, Chloe had plenty of screen-time, and Chloe was gorgeous through most of it. And it's about time that Oliver and Chloe figured out that they had some good chemistry. That bit with the bow and arrow was a lot more sexually charged than the Clark/Zatanna scene.



    But those thoughts do point to the fact that this episode was largely devoted to fan service. Lois and Zatanna were there for the male drooling benefit, and those gratuitous shots of Warrior Angel's physique were a bone to the female fans. There was even a groan-inducing shout-out to the X-Box 360 fans with the prototype to the Project Natal. (Frankly, it looks even more ridiculous than most Wii games to me, but I don't kiss the boots of Microsoft.) No matter how hard the writers might have tried to make a story out of all of this, it was more about the parts than the whole.moreless
Allison Mack

Allison Mack

Chloe Sullivan

Erica Durance

Erica Durance

Lois Lane

Justin Hartley

Justin Hartley

Oliver Queen/Green Arrow

Tom Welling

Tom Welling

Clark Kent/Kal-El of Krypton

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions

FILTER BY TYPE

  • TRIVIA (2)

    • When Clark and Lois are talking in the Daily Planet; Lois is walking around talking on a corded phone, when she turns around after getting her coffee she is still holding the phone but the cord is gone. Then she walks past Clark and it reappears. When she says, "...anyone worth talking to," the phone line is hanging down. When she turns to face Clark, it is instantly taunt and pulling back toward Clark.

    • Trivia: The costumes Clark pulls out of Lois's closet are all ones she has worn on previous episodes during undercover investigations. The flag bikini is from the Season 5 episode "Exposed," the red leather jumpsuit is from the Season 6 episode "Combat," and the French maid's uniform is from the Season 8 episode "Odyssey."

  • QUOTES (7)

    • Chloe: Well, look, whether you feel like it or not, I know a superhero when I see one. I'm sort of in the business of helping superheroes.
      Stephen: I don't think anyone's dad talked about that on Career Day.

    • Zatanna: I could swear there's a twinkle of magic in your eyes. Or is it just pride in a job well done?
      Clark: I think I always gain a bit of perspective when you blow through town.
      Zatanna: Careful. A girl might just start to crush on you.

    • Zatanna I always knew you were packing some heavy artillery under that tie, but seeing through walls? Now, that's a show stopper.
      Clark: All in a day's work, I guess.
      Zatanna: Wait. With powers like yours, how can you possibly say "all in a day's work"?
      Clark: Well, I don't really think about it. Just being like this is almost like breathing now.
      Zatanna: And with a gift like that comes responsibilities.
      Clark: Exactly.

    • Zatanna: Without a dash of fantasy, life's just life. Where's the magic in that?

    • Lois: I'm cashing in a rain check. You cannot renege on a rain check.
      Clark: Lois, can I rain check on your rain check?
      Lois: No. You have been cashing in on so many rain checks recently that I am soaking wet with disappointment.

    • Alec: So, uh, why do you do it?
      Clark: I do it because I want to help people... like you. Not because I have to but because I choose to.
      Alec: What do I do now?
      Clark: You... should go home and be a kid, and remember the next time you run into a bully that there is some goodness in there.
      Alec: 'Cause everyone's worth saving.
      Clark: And a hero's work is never done.

    • Oliver: You know... sometimes you got to take your fun where you can get it. And sometimes... it's right in front of your face. You just have to want to see it.

  • NOTES (7)

    • International Airdates:
      UK: August 17, 2010 on E4/E4 HD
      Sweden: August 20, 2010 on TV6
      Turkey: April 10, 2011 on CNBC-e
      Norway: May 1, 2011 on Max
      Czech Republic: October 12, 2011 on TV Nova

    • In the comic expo, you could see a guy in the background dressed up as the late Silver Age version of the Green Arrow, with the stitched vest. He appears several times throughout the whole expo scene. One in particular is when the kid finally found the unopened Warrior Angel comic book. He is holding an arrow out of focus in the background.

    • Music: Smooth (Car Stereo Wars)

    • Oliver's text message to Chloe about a "Maniac with boomerangs" refers to the DC Comics character, Captain Boomerang. There are two characters with the name: one is a nemesis of the Silver Age Flash, an Australian criminal who uses boomerangs. After his recent death, his son, who can also run in brief bursts of superspeed, has adopted the name.

    • Warrior Angel's origins as a child who gains superpowers after speaking a magic word is similar to that of Fawcett and later DC Comics superhero Captain Marvel in which young boy Billy Batson (an alliterative name only one letter away from Alec Abrams) becomes the world's mightiest mortal. When Clark mentions that the publisher of the comic stole the idea from a friend of Zatanna's father, this is most likely a reference to Shazam, the wizard who granted Billy Batson his powers and whose name is spoken to activate the powers.

    • Cassidy Freeman and Callum Blue are credited but don't appear.

    • This episode was originally set to air on 1/29/10, but was pre-empted because the Hope for Haiti marathon pre-empted "Disciple" on 1/22/10, bouncing that episode to 1/29/10.

  • ALLUSIONS (1)

    • Zatanna: There's a monster at the end of the book.
      References The Monster at the End of This Book: Starring Lovable, Furry Old Grover by Jon Stone. In it Grover tries to warn the reader not to read further because there is a monster at the end.

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