The fourth season comes to a close.

Cast

Tom
Welling
as
Clark Kent

Kristen Kreuk as
Lana Lang

Michael
Rosenbaum
as Lex Luthor

John
Glover

as Lionel Luthor

Annette
O’Toole
as Martha Kent

John
Schneider
as Jonathan Kent

Jensen Ackles as
Jason Teague

Allison Mack as
Chloe Sullivan.

Written by Todd Slavkin and Darren Swimmer.

Directed by Greg Beeman.

Original Airdate


Commencement
originally aired on Wednesday,
May 18, 2005.

Synopsis

A second meteor shower approaches, while Clark,
Lionel, Genvieve,
Jason and Lex race to collect the stones.

High Point

The best was probably the “she left it quite a mess”
line. Close
contenders were the foreshadowing dialogue, musical
score in the final
few seconds, the reaction to the sight in the library,
and lack of
footprints around the drop point. (That had to be a
single take; that
was well packed snow.) The big “who?” question near
the end will
likely have an interesting answer, too.

Low Point

How many times can Lana survive events like that?

The Review

Smallville has developed something of a
tradition. The
season starts to drag a bit in the middle, but the
season finale
kickstarts a new plotline and new direction to keep
things moving for
a new year. These new directions contribute to a
sense of
originality, as we begin to wonder how much
of what we’re
about to see is from the comics, and now much isn’t.
I give it 5 out
of 6.

The effects were very well done, including
those footprints,
particularly since there wasn’t the blowing snow you’d
expect around
the feet when a film helicopter is near. That shot
was a lot harder
than it looks. The other effects were convincingly
done, tying much
of the legacy together. I give it 6 out of 6.

The story was well done. There wasn’t time
for a lot of
emotional depth, but they worked a little bit in for
each character.
I give it 5 out of 6.

The acting worked. It really seems like
everyone involved
spent the last few weeks saving themselves for the
season finale, and
we had the payoff. I give it 5 out of 6.

The emotional response had only three minor
weak moments.
One was “the return,” the second was the
uncharacteristic copter side
freakout, and the third was the “still mobile?”
portion that I
mentioned in the Low Point. These were small
complaints, and the rest
of the episode was strong enough that I still give it
5 out of 6.

The production was excellent. The music and
camera work was
dead on where it needed to be, as was much of the
lighting. A very
active camera helps to keep the feeling that things
are moving, and we
have that in spades. Beeman knows that aspect of his
job very well.
I don’t have a single complaint this week. I give it
6 out of 6.

Overall, it’s a very strong season ender,
continuing in the
Smallville tradition. With season finales
and premiers like
this, I’d be tempted to cap the series off at two
episodes per
season. I give it 5 out of 6.

In total,
Commencement
receives
37
out of 42.