SMALLVILLE - 9.13 - "Persuasion" Review (

By:Joe Oesterle
Review Date: Sunday, February 21, 2010
Source: Mania

From the opening 30 seconds I knew this week’s installment, “Persuasion” was going to be one of those fluffy Smallville fillers they seem to throw at us much too often, but after watching this episode I found myself openly wishing for some misguided Kandorian from the future to sneak up behind me and run a steel pole through my back to put me out of my misery. I didn’t want to sit through an entire hour of this guaranteed crapfest.

Sadly, as I have discovered after watching this ninth season of what should be one of the greatest shows on television, there is never a murderous Kandorian around when you need one.

Perhaps I was a little generous in last week’s review of “Warrior,” but I am a sucker for a pretty girl in fantasy clothing. And again, I confess to grading last Friday’s show on my “Hot Chicks in Leather and Fishnets Curve,” while also watching the show in an altered state of consciousness.

I promise I did neither this time. This time I viewed the latest chapter in the Smallville saga stone cold sober. Big mistake. The lesson here is either start doing harder drugs before I sit in front of the CW, or assume next week’s script won’t make me want to gouge my own eyeballs out. Hmmmmm… Anyone out there know where I can score some highly lethal narcotics?

Seriously guys, I don’t enjoy giving this show bad marks, but can anyone out there tell me if this show was exactly the same, (same cast, same writers, same backstory, same producers, same everything) EXCEPT, instead of featuring the character of Clark Kent they invented some created-for-TV super powered being – would you still be watching?

The answer is no. No you wouldn’t. We’re all watching this show because we love Superman. We’re all willing to accept certain limitations that come with a live-action televised version of the Man of Steel – especially when the special effects budget often seems woefully underfunded. That’s not to say the only reason to watch a show about Clark Kent/Kal El/Superboy/man is to see him catch 747’s from crashing into capacity-filled stadiums, or witness him fly around the world at superspeed to reverse time, but let’s be honest - It’s a big part of who this character is.

We, the audience, deserve better. The characters of Clark Kent and Lois Lane deserve better.

I know many of you are sticking with this show because you feel like you’ve made a nine year commitment, but really it’s time to cut your losses. I’d like to say I was just bored with this episode, or it simply wasn’t my cup of tea, but that is not the case. I swear to you I felt like “Persuasion” was a personal insult to each and every viewer out there. It was, by far, the most difficult hour of television I’ve had to sit through all year, and probably ranks as one of the worst 60 minutes of broadcast television in the history of the medium. And that’s really saying something because it’s competing with about another 50 or so really shitty episodes of Smallville.

Eight paragraphs in, and so far I haven’t reviewed a single moment from the performance. Let’s take care of that now, shall we?

I know there will be some who don’t understand my bitter disappointment. I’ve heard from you before. Some of you tell me it’s part of the Smallville package, and I should just lower my hopes and expectations, and I’ll enjoy it more. To you kind people I respectfully disagree. Nothing short of a full frontal lobotomy would have made me made me receptive to this one hour assault on my intelligence.

To those of you who believe I’m just a hater, and I really get my green rocks off by crapping on your party, I have nothing but sympathy. I’m not a hater of Smallville, I’m a lover of the Superman mythos. Comic books, The Animated Series, George Reeves, Christopher Reeve, the old radio show, hell even Superfriends. I’m angry that these people don’t respect what I hold dear. And I’m even angrier I have no heat vision to teach them a lesson.

I wish I could say that at least next week couldn’t possibly be any worse, but I’ve learned this much after watching this crew for this long. They’re always capable of sucking more.

We deserve to be rescued from this tragedy. Unfortunately Superman is nowhere to be seen.



If you liked this article, check out Joe Oesterle’s review of the 1974 classic, “Towering Inferno.”

Mania Grade: F-
Title: Smallville
Episode Title: Persuasion
Season: 9
Starring: Tom Welling, Erica Durance, Allison Mack, Callum Blue, Justin Hartley, Cassidy Freeman, G. Michael Gray, Carmen Lavigne
Director: Christopher Petry
Writer:: Anne Cofell Saunders
Network: The CW Network
Series: Smallville