EPISODE REVIEW: SMALLVILLE: Disciple (Season 9, Episode 10)

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Play by Play:

Lois and Clark leave a benefit,"Kindof" as a couple.  Lip lock ensues, briefly before Clark zips off to do Superman-ish stuff.  After Clark leaves, a hooded figure shoots an arrow at Lois.  Lois, believing it is Ollie, shouts at him.  The hooded rooftop dweller shoots Lois in the back… either Ollie has a real jealousy issue, or that's not Ollie.

Cue Theme Music

In a training session, Oliver nearly offs Speedy-- I mean Mia---by a gross overeaction.  He doesn't seem to be himself-- whoever that is this week.

Zod pays Clark a visit, bearing an apple.  He uses it as a "sunday school lesson", to illustrate his disappointment with Kal-El's reluctance to give them the secret of superpowers.  Clark is called away… Lois is in the hospital with an arrow sticking out of her back.   Naturally some suspect Ollie, but Chloe doesn't, because the arrows are low tech.   

Zod visits Lois in the hospital, and plants the normal soap opera stuff, while the Dark Archer™ (© R2, 2010, all rights reserved) breaches the Watchtower defenses and attacks Chloe.  Clark arrives Just In Time™, and stares meaningfully at the skylight where the Archer departed.  If only he could fly….

Chloe and Clark bicker about Ollie while Mia gets herself kidnapped by Dark Archer.  Lois confronts Ollie, slightly and Ollie figures out that this Dark Archer is after the 'Lovers, Allies, and Disciples' in his life.  Clark finds a stash of the low tech arrows in Oliver's stuff.  The marks on them match an ancient order of archers.  They speculate that Oliver was a member of this order to refine his skills and that Dark Archer is responsible.  Well, Ollie has already come to that conclusion on his own, but the really elaborate celtic knot graffiti on the wall of his dojo kind of seals the deal.

Ollie finds Vordigan (the Dark Archer (d'OH!  They actually call him that.  There go my licensing fees....) and they do the whole mentor-mentee dance.   Apparently, Ollie is supposed to kill his mentor.... but he's a hero now and can't.  Therefore Ollie must become a pincushion.  That logic kind of escapes me.  Why do the mentors always have a deathwish?  It takes the 'disappointed Jewish Mother' syndrome to a bit of an extreme, doesn't it?

Clark and Chloe find the Celtic knot maze where Ollie and Mia are being hunted.  Vordigan, Dark Archer, lets fly a volley of arrows that Clark deflects.  Green Arrow shoots Vordigan in the shoulder... decidedly NOT killing him, proving himself to be a better man AND simultaneously thumbing his nose at his old mentor.  What a twofer! 

Clark finds out that Zod has been chatting up his girl, and Ollie makes nice with Speedy--Mia.  He should tell her that by choosing to be Green Arrow's sidekick, she's going to paint a target on her own back.  Speedy, the Girl Target!

Zod then confronts Kal-El with his trust issues.  Kal gets really irritated, but Zod gets some useful info... about the book of Rao.  

Cue ominous music....

Observations

This episode completes Green Arrow's journey from dark to light.  It functioned as a nice coda before we see the Justice Society next week.  Some good bits:

  • Oliver's friends avoided the cliche of immediately jumping to the conclusion that Green Arrow was the Dark Archer
  • Clark and Lois have a good relationship, even though he dashes off at the drop of the hat (or super-hearing, as the case may be).  It's positive, affectionate and understanding.
  • Mia is wearing 'Speedy' colors- her hoodie in the final sequence is red with yellow highlights.  Sidekicks Assemble!

For some reason, I found Zod tiresome and predictable tonight.  Although he's paying Clark respect on the surface, it is very obvious that it's ALL surface.

I really hate to say this... this was a good episode, but I can't help but look past it to next week.  Total Justice has the potential to be awesome, or the episode(s) that kill Smallville dead.  Next week, we will see:

  • Michael Shanks as Hawkman (unfortunately, this is not the first live action Hawkman)  

     

  • The first live action Doctor Fate
  • The first live action Stargirl
  • Alan Scott's hand
  • Jay Garricks Helmet
  • I'm reasonably sure we'll see the return of the Martian Manhunter
  • A really big picture of the Justice Society.

What did you guys (and girls) think of this week's installment of the only current live action superhero show worth watching?

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