SMALLVILLE - 10.6 - Harvest Review (Mania.com)

By:Joe Oesterle
Review Date: Monday, November 01, 2010
Source: Mania

After all this prolonged stalling about whether he’ll tell or she’ll confess, Clark finally came clean last week and admitted to Lois he was “The Blur.” My complaint about that is had he only told her earlier we would have had some scenes like the opening car ride for some time now. The chemistry between Erica Durance and Tom Welling was palpable, and that’s because they were finally allowed to play real emotions. They weren’t forced to fumble around with awkward dialogue in unbelievable situations. At last the main actors were able to act with each other instead of act like 3rd rate versions of Spencer Tracey and Audrey Hepburn.

Lois was practically giddy when she admits to her boyfriend of steel that she feels like she’s dating a god, and Durance’s performance was lifted by the believability of the situation. Obviously basing a show on a human-looking, super strength alien is a little out there (though nowadays it does seem to be the norm) so as I’ve been saying for a long time now, they have to make the little things ring true. Lois gushing like a schoolgirl at her boyfriend’s ability to lift a car without a jack felt real to me. It was truly that simple. Now that’s not to say this episode didn’t have problems – this is Smallville after all, but at least the interpersonal relationships seemed solid in this one.

‘Lil Lex is having yet another birthday party. That’s a lot of cake for an 11 year old kid who has only been alive in this stage for 6 weeks. If Tess doesn’t monitor his sugar intake Lex is going to have problems focusing in school, or getting to sleep at night, or he’ll become obsessed with killing the Earth’s mightiest savior. One thing is for certain, at the rate this child is aging, he’ll be the tallest, baldest kid in his 5th grade class picture. Tess is noticing her tiny tot is has passed right by the terrible twos and is rapidly advancing to his malevolent thirties. She’s concerned with his “S” symbol obsession, but then again who isn’t. It’s been ten years already Clark, put on the freaking cape and tights.

This next tidbit was mentioned by a couple people last week, and this is possibly a spoiler, though I have no official confirmation, so if you prefer to be spoiler-free, skip to the next paragraph. I have heard/read that Tess Mercer may indeed be either a clone of Lex Luthor’s mother, or Lex was cloned using Lex’s DNA as well as that of Tess, because it’s possible Tess is also a Luthor. I don’t know much beyond that, but it is interesting. Interesting in the way the creative force behind this show could think this far ahead and cast a redhead as Tess to make her a possible unwitting test tube mother of ‘Lil Lex, and yet they’re seldom capable of making it from commercial to commercial without committing some sort of sin against logic. No promises, but I now have a hunch there is something to this.

Ordinarily I get worried when there’s a lot of Lois in any given episode, and usually that fear is slightly assuaged by one of her patented sexy-time dress-up costume changes. Sadly this week’s less than scintillating garb was straight out of the Amishcrombie and Dutch catalogue. That said, Durance didn’t make me cringe. She was more than serviceable for the entire duration. What did make me cringe were the lapses in logic once again.

First of all, Clark comes back to the car and notices Lois isn’t there. When the town cop shows up, Clark cuts himself, and it’s later explained away as his proximity to a human who has been nourishing himself on well water that’s been fortified with Blue Kryptonite. The obviously problem here is if Clark becomes mortal enough that he gashes himself up pretty good on a tire rim because he’s near one guy who grew up drinking Blue K H2O, why in the hell was he not only able to sustain the bucket full of boiling hot Blue K on his back? He’s now very near to the entire village of Blue K water drinkin’ yahoos. He’s closer to them now than when he was stuck in the house and didn’t have enough strength to bust the old-fashioned lock with his bare hands. Now they’re telling me that one cop made him mortal because Clark stood so close to him, but an entire town of people raised on the same water the cop was, AND a bucket of steaming Blue Kryptonite can be dumped on him, and he now has the strength to make a super speed getaway? F@cking really?

Oh, and I didn’t have this one on TiVo so I couldn’t rewind, but did Clark Kent shoot a man in the back with a freaking shot gun at close range – without warning? Let’s leave alone the whole, Superman doesn’t kill code; how about Clark being brought up on murder charges after he and Lois wrote an article that indicted an entire town of an annual murder/harvest religious event? Someone tell me I just needed to rewind that to see that didn’t happen and I’ll be fine, but the way I saw that, it looked like manslaughter. Let the courts decide if it was self-defense, but, and let me preface this with the statement that I’m not a lawyer, shooting people to death from behind is illegal in most states.

I did enjoy the scene of ‘Lil Lex in the Kent barn. That Connor Stanhope kid is one of the best actors in this show. I also enjoyed the fact that Tess slaps her kid. Hell, if Clark can blast a bystander with buckshot, a little corporal punishment towards a potential world-crushing tyrant has to be accepted.

The show ended with Clark and Lois doing the nasty in bed, while ‘Lil Lex was getting nastier by the minute. I don’t like Tess’ odds of striking that kid twice. The first time will probably be the last time. Take care Tess. Nice knowin’ ya.

Once again, some good goods, but some unforgivable bads. I’m going to give this episode a C minus. Truth be told it deserves less if only for the inconsistency of Clark’s powers being sapped, but if he really did kill a guy, or even just wound him, this is an F. That is sad, because the episode started with such promise. But that’s always been my experience with Smallville – lots of promise, but too often they don’t live up to it.

 


 

Joe Oesterle’s new book, “Weird Hollywood” is out. Here’s an unedited story from the book. It’s Halloween appropriate. Read, if you dare, the bizarre, twisted and unsolved murder of The Black Dahlia.



Mania Grade: C-
Title: Smallville
Episode: Harvest
Starring: Tom Welling, Erica Durance, Cassidy Freeman, Connor Stanhope, Bella King
Written by: Turi Meyer, Al Septien
Directed by: Turi Meyer
Network: The CW Network
Series: Smallville