Smallville Review – “Insurgence”

The ads say Lex has finally turned. I’d say he’s paused to look at his options, but he hasn’t set a firm course yet.

Cast

Tom Welling as
Clark Kent
Kristen Kreuk as
Lana Lang
Michael
Rosenbaum
as Lex Luthor
John Glover
as Lionel Luthor
Sam Jones III as
Pete Ross
Allison Mack as
Chloe Sullivan
Annette
O’Toole
as Martha Kent
John
Schneider
as Jonathan Kent

Written by Kenneth
Biller
and Jeph
Loeb
.
Directed by James
Marshall
.

Original Airdate


Insurgence
originally aired on Tuesday,
January 21, 2003

Synopsis

Lex discovers that Lionel has bugged the mansion and decides to return
in kind. (I don’t think his anger management classes are going very
well.)

High Point

Preparing to jump. It’s unfortunate the jump looked so cheesy toward
the end; the Daily Planet set and the build-up were excellent.

Honourable Mentions for High Point

The end of the fourth act, which made me wonder what happened off
screen between Tempest and Vortex, was also a great
scene that I hope they return to later.

Lionel’s research project, and his final conversation with Lex were
both very interesting. It’s nice to know that Clark hasn’t been
fooling everybody. I think it’s a safe bet that Lionel’s got his own
version of the Wall of Weird, and he knows Clark belongs in the pile.
He may suspect even more.

Finally, the people on the alt.tv.smallville newsgroup have been
complaining for a while that Pa Kent tends to speak in platitudes.
It’s nice to see someone on the show notice that, too.

Low Point

The bug in the stereo. Why would a blind guy install a video feed?
(I’ll recind this if we later learn Lionel’s been faking his
blindness.)

The Review

This felt original as an episode of the show, since it’s a
far cry from most of the farm-based krypto-freaks that we tend to see.
Instead, we get something that reminded me a lot of Die
Hard
. I give it 4 out of 6.

The effects on everything but the end of the jump were very
good. That last shot looked very fake, though. The reflection of
Clark and the Planet globe in the windows almost makes up for it. I
give it 5 out of 6.

The story was well done. Lex ends up looking like a greater
bad guy than he is at this point, Lionel has even more reason to
suspect, and the Kents are starting to take some pro-active moves
towards keeping Clark’s secret. If they’re showing an episode like
this now, I can’t wait to see what’s waiting for us during sweeps. I
give it 5 out of 6, for three minor problems. (The first is in the Low
Point, the second was when the first line of cops didn’t stop Clark
walking through the barricade, and the third was when Lex didn’t
question how Clark beat the helicopter to Metropolis when he’d been in
Smallville just before that.)

The acting this week was mainly from Michael Rosenbaum, John
Glover, and Annette O’Toole. That’s a guarantee of some great stuff.
The script and their acting work kept me so interested that I didn’t
even realize Pete and Chloe weren’t on this week until after the show
ended. I give it 6 out of 6.

The emotional response produced by this was lacking only in
the first act. The teaser and the last three acts held me
completely. I give it 5 out of 6.

The production was excellent. This was easily one of the most
cinematic episodes of Smallville yet. (Tempest and
Vortex are really the only other two options, in my opinion.)
The crane shots over the crowds and rooftops were very well done. The
vertigo was nicely handled. The music and cuts of Clark preparing to
jump were perfect. (I think I heard a hint of a new Superman theme in
there.) I give it 6 out of 6.

Overall, this was a great episode. It’s set the standard for
sweeps very high. I give it 6 out of 6.

In total, Insurgence receives 37 out of 42.

10 replies on “Smallville Review – “Insurgence””

  1. GrimSean says:

    I was impressed
    I especially enjoyed the performance turned in by Michael Rosenbaum this week, once again proving that Lex Luthor is the truly interesting character on this show. The telling off of Jonathan Kent is something I’ve been waiting for since the start of this season.

    The final shot of Lex outside of Luthorcorp, where he was watching the Kents was pretty interesting too. The sense of jealousy was something I’ve been waiting for, and it made for great foreshadowing of the eventual rift that will come between Lex and Clark. The understatement of it, when compared to the comic book mythos of Warrior Angel in “Ryan” and the Native legends in “Skinwalkers” is something that I hope the writers stick with – I enjoy that aspect of the show, but sometimes it seems like they’re pouring it on, rather than judiciously applying small amounts.

    • Alexius says:

      Re: I was impressed

      The final shot of Lex outside of Luthorcorp, where he was watching the Kents was pretty interesting too.

      This Was What Made The Episode For Me. I Didn’t Think Lex Did Anything That Would Indicate he’d ‘Turned’, Except For His Look In That Last Shot. His look Of Envy Was Perfect.

      Also, Two Comments On The Endings:
      1.) They Didn’t Say If They’d Decided To Actually Spy On The Luthors, Just That It Was An Idea…
      2.) Why Did The Mother hide The Key? That Was Out Of Left Feild For Me.

      • fiziko says:

        Re: I was impressed

        2.) Why Did The Mother hide The Key? That Was Out Of Left Feild For Me.

        I can only assume it has something to do with what happened off screen between Tempest and Vortex. In Tempest, the ship was activated when Martha was the only one present. The next time we saw the ship was in Vortex, when it was over the corn field heading for the tornado. I’d like to know what happened in between.

        • Cerberus7 says:

          Re: I was impressed
          I would guess a message played from Clark’s biological mother, possibly a hologram. Seeing and hearing that scared her into thinking she’d lose her son if he ever learned what the ship held.

          But that’s just speculation. :)

          • GrimSean says:

            Re: I was impressed

            I would guess a message played from Clark’s biological mother, possibly a hologram. Seeing and hearing that scared her into thinking she’d lose her son if he ever learned what the ship held.

            But that’s just speculation. :)

            I thought at the end of Tempest, the ship powered up and flew out of the root cellar, narrowly missing Martha. We didn’t see it agian until in Vortex where they showed it being blown off course by the tornado, but I thought that happened almost immediately after it flew out of the root cellar. If it’s as advanced as it seems to be, I can’t really see it playing a message (or doing anything, for that matter) for anyone other than Clark.

  2. PsychoBabble says:

    Highs and Lows
    First the high:

    Finally, the people on the alt.tv.smallville newsgroup have been complaining for a while that Pa Kent tends to speak in platitudes. It’s nice to see someone on the show notice that, too.

    I dunno that it’s that they’ve noticed it so much that Lex just got tired of listening to it. For Martha and Clark, and heck anyone else in Smallville, that is just how everyone is used to Jonathan Kent being. Sure he’s holier-than-thou, but he means well. Okay, with the exception of the Luthors he means well.

    The bug in the stereo. Why would a blind guy install a video feed? (I’ll recind this if we later learn Lionel’s been faking his blindness.)

    Um, just because he’s blind doesn’t make him stupid. If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth at least a couple of million dollars or some darn good blackmail material. So Lionel can’t see it. Does that mean he can’t hire someone else to watch it for him? Or do you think Lionel has time to check out all the surveillance himself? He likely has well paid ‘intelligence experts’ to do that sort of work for him.

    • GrimSean says:

      Re: Highs and Lows

      The bug in the stereo. Why would a blind guy install a video feed? (I’ll recind this if we later learn Lionel’s been faking his blindness.)

      Um, just because he’s blind doesn’t make him stupid. If a picture is worth a thousand words, a video is worth at least a couple of million dollars or some darn good blackmail material. So Lionel can’t see it. Does that mean he can’t hire someone else to watch it for him? Or do you think Lionel has time to check out all the surveillance himself? He likely has well paid ‘intelligence experts’ to do that sort of work for him.

      There’s also the fact that it might be useful to know who it is who’s talking – sometimes it’s helpful to see who is talking rather than hear what they’re saying for reasons other than blackmail.

  3. vanyel says:

    Jumping
    The low point was definitely the jump for me: *no one* “runs” when they’re jumping, but Clark getting through the first line of cops was close. Overall though, I agree: this was a great episode that definitely moved the story forward.

  4. jbrecken says:

    Guest stars
    I thought it was cool that they used Maggie Sawyer rather than some generic Metropolis cop. It’s nice to see actual Superman characters occasionally.

    It’s also intriguing that they put the LuthorCorp building next to the Planet, since it makes sense for Lex to take over his father’s office once he kills his business.

    • y42 says:

      Re: Guest stars

      It’s also intriguing that they put the LuthorCorp building next to the Planet, since it makes sense for Lex to take over his father’s office once he kills his business.

      There is plenty of time for the luthorcorp building to be destroyed by some generic freak of the week ;- )

Comments are closed.