The CW's Official Description:
CHRISTOPHER REEVE REPRISES HIS ROLE AS DR. SWANN AND
FACES OFF WITH LIONEL LUTHOR — When Jonathan (John Schneider) begins to
act strangely, Clark (Tom Welling) believes Jor-El is sending Jonathan
messages through the key and is the cause for his father’s withdrawal
from the family. Clark goes down to the caves to confront his biological
father but Lionel catches him there and begins putting the pieces
together – leading him straight to Dr. Swann (guest star Christopher
Reeve). As the two billionaires face off, a deal is struck and Lionel’s
true motives are revealed.
Martha Kent (Annette O'Toole) walks up to the barn,
visibly upset. Jonathan Kent (John Schneider) is on the roof of the
barn, trying to fix the weathervane. Martha calls out to him from below,
asking him why he is working and that Clark Kent (Tom Welling) should be
doing the work. She reminds Jonathan that the doctor told him to take it
easy. Suddenly Jonathan hears a sharp ringing in his ears. At the same
time, we see a chest of drawers in the barn, with a strange glow or
light coming from one of the drawers. The ringing continues in Jonathan
ears, and becomes unbearable. Jonathan cannot keep his balance as he
holds his ears from the pain. Martha is watching helpless from above.
Jonathan screams out in pain, looses his balance and tumbles down the
roof. Martha screams for Clark in desperation. Clark hears the cry and
superspeeds over to the barn, just in time to catch his father, as well
as shield them both from the weathervane that was about to fall onto
them. "Dad, what're you doing? Trying to fly?", asks Clark. Jonathan
explains that it was the strong noise that threw him off balance, only
to realize that he was the only one to hear the noise. When Clark tries
to help his father pick up the weathervane, Jonathan snaps, "Damn it,
Kal-El, I can do it myself!". Martha and Clark are shocked and ask
Jonathan why he called Clark that. Jonathan doesn't know, and brushes
off any further discussion. Clark insists, asking to know about the
noise, and realizes that it's the same he had once heard (see "Exile")
and that it has to do with the key. Jonathan is dismissive again, but
Clark continues to push, asking if this has to do with Jor-El.
Clark goes to the chest of drawers on the barn and takes
out a metal toolbox where the key is hidden.
Back at LuthorCorp, Lionel Luthor (John Glover) is still
sitting where we last saw him in "Crisis", listing to opera and holding
a gun to his head. But the phone rings. As Lionel considers the
frustration of his failed suicide, we get treated to an extended
Motorola product placement as Lionel's cell phone continues to ring. He
decides to answer it. His answer to the person on the phone is, "He is?
All right. Have the chopper standing by". He puts the gun down.
Clark is standing in the caves holding the key. He is
talking to Jor-El and asking him why he had to involve Jonathan in all
of this. He boldly challenges Jor-El, saying that he will take on
whatever promises Jonathan made, reminding Jor-El that he, Clark, is the
one Jor-El wants. At that moment, the key lights up, and then a
particular hole in the wall lights up to. The key is drawn to the wall
and then just hangs there, in mid-air, as a whole lot of energy and
light is transferred between the key and the hole in the wall. At that
moment, a voice is heard. Clark reacts quickly and grabs the key, thus
ending the light show. Lionel shows up. Clark makes up some feeble
excuse to explain his presence in the caves, while Lionel mentions
something deep about the mysteries of the universe. Clark tries to
leave, but Lionel asks him about Jonathan's recovery, stating that it
must be very hard for Clark to see his father so weak. Clark answers
that he loves his father regardless of his state. "Of course you do. A
son's love for a father, there's nothing to compare it to. After all,
you only get one", replies Lionel. Clark starts walking away, as Lionel
notices the hole in the wall that is the same shape as the key. As
Lionel gets closer to the wall, Clark observes him for a second, then
superspeeds away. Lionel turns to Clark again, but he is gone.
Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum) is talking to his father
back at the mansion, mentioning a strange case of déja-vu
as he inquires about his father's sudden resurgence of interest in the
caves, as he reads the Smallville Ledger, with the headlines "Scientists
Return to Cave". Lionel is passionate, as he begins talking about the
caves. He asks Lex to remember the hole in the wall, but Lex dismisses
it as being Lionel's obsession, not his. Lionel continues, explaining
that, until now, the hole had been sealed over. He then explains how he
met Clark in the caves the day before. Lex, who, until then, had feigned
indifference, turns his head as he hears Clark's name. Lionel explains
that the hole is now open, after Clark's visit, and claims that it is
Clark who somehow opened it. "You know Dad, they say mental illness is
hereditary. I'm willing to accept my break with reality, are you?", asks
Lex, sarcastically. "Oh, Lex, men of vision have so often been mocked.
Galileo knew it was the Earth that orbited the Sun, and he was sentenced
to death for that discovery", answers Lionel. "Where's the Inquisition
when you need one?", responds Lex. Lionel tries to convince his son not
to let his friendship with Clark cloud his judgment. Lionel lists all
the different events that tie Clark to the caves, but Lex answers,
"Probably coincidence". "Oh, coincidence. That's an explanation used by
fools and liars", responds Lionel. As Lionel continues to try and
persuade Lex that they should work together, we focus on Lex's shirt
button, that is obviously bugged, and we follow the bug to a fake
maintenance van parked in the woods, by the river. Lionel reminds Lex
that he knows Lex has a whole room dedicated to trying to uncover the
mystery that is Clark Kent.
We learn in this episode that Lex speaks German. Lex says first, "We
must reduce costs" and then "Gentlemen, it's late. I'm tired. We can
Allison Mack (Chloe Sullivan) and
Sam Jones III (Pete Ross) don't
appear in this episode.
On the episode's first airing, Tom Welling and Christopher Reeve once
again appear at the end of the episode in a repeat of the brief blurb
for the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation: 1-800-225-0292 -
Christopher Reeve is listed as "Special Appearance by."
In this episode, one of the FBI officers, when talking to Lex about
his security with Clark, refers to Clark as "a kid from Podunk." In Tom
Welling's recent movie, "Cheaper By The Dozen", "Podunk" is also used by
a high school jock when talking about Welling's character.
The writing on the key when it activates is red, yellow, and blue -
the colors of Clark Kent as Superman as an adult.
Dr. Swann states that Clark's secret has never left "this building."
However, "this building" is clearly different from the one in "Rosetta", where the promise was
It's only been two episodes (two months real time) since Jonathan's
heart surgery in "Resurrection" but
Lionel kicks him here in the chest hard. Very hard. That kind of blow to
someone recently recovered from a heart bypass surgery would be
temporarily crippling at the very least. For that matter, Lionel's
terminally ill. And yet they have an extended fight sequence.
Once again, Clark acts absurdly obvious around Lex with his powers.
Won't Lex wonder at all how Clark knows about the wire well concealed
beneath his jacket? Or doesn't Clark care?
When Lionel was about to commit suicide in his high rise office in
Metropolis, he got a phone call from someone telling him that Clark was
in the caves. But apparently, Clark was only down there for a few
minutes to put the key in the wall. However, Lionel shows up immediately
after his phone call, which is just after Clark had arrived. We learned
that Metropolis is a 3 hour drive from Smallville in a previous episode.
Even in the Luthor helicopter, it would have taken at least 20-30
minutes. There is no way he could have gotten there that fast unless he
had Clark's speed, which he doesn't!!!
Either the timeframe here is very odd, or there's some obtuse
narrative toying at the beginning. The previous episode was "Crisis", where (among other things) that episode
ended with a big storm and Lex just starting to set up an arrangement
with FBI Guy. And then that episode ended with Lionel with a gun in his
mouth. Then this episode begins with Lionel with a gun in his mouth and
the same opera in the background, implying it begins where "Crisis" ended. But Smallville is now pretty dry
and the FBI seem to have a rather elaborate surveillance operation set
up. But unless Lionel likes to practice shooting himself there doesn't
seem to have been enough time passing for various other events to
The Kent Farm has been visited by gangsters and Freaks of the Week,
but the Kents continue to take absurdly minor efforts to hide the key.
Clark locks it in a toolbox with a padlock, for Pete's sake.
Where do the "FBI agents" go after Jonathan drives them out of the
cave? They show up about five seconds after Clark super-speeds in and
pulls Jonathan off of Lionel. And wouldn't they have seen Clark
Maybe we haven't noticed before, but when Lana pulls up in the last
scene there's a fairly large mildly subsurbanish-looking house directly
across from the Kent farm. It's not Lana's place (taken over by the
Conroys in "Slumber"). Who live there? And
why have they apparently never seen any of Clark's super-shenanigans?
Once again we see the Kryptonian language displayed with alternating
lines moving in opposite directions, yet Clark has no difficulty reading
it. While we have no way of knowing exactly how an alien brain might
perceive this text, this movement would seem to make the simple act of
reading unnecessarily complex.
It seems odd that when Lionel recalls to Lex all the connections of
Clark and the cave, he fails to mention Dr. Waldon and his message about
"The day is coming" and Clark being the last son. After all both he and
Lex met him together.
Last season finale, Lionel was about to open the caves using a
kryptonite-made key. He never did it because Clark stole it and the wall
sealed up. Well, if the wall is open again why doesn't Lionel pick up
where he left off?
Why does Jonathan say Clark is never going to have to face his own
mortality? Clark's been aging normally so far - why would he think Clark
is suddenly going to be ageless? And Clark has faced death by kryptonite
several times - it seems like he's already faced his mortality.
In the fight scene in the cave, when Jonathan and Lionel are rolling
around one of them hits a large stalagmite and wobbles like it was made
of styrofoam or balsa wood.
If the FBI guys are undercover and in a disguised surveillance
van...why are they having a public outdoor meeting with Lex right next
to it, with Lex's car parked nearby?
We've seen in the past that Clark has a cell phone. So...why does he
need to borrow Lana's phone at the Talon?
Clark talks to Lex and finds out that Lex isn't responsible for the
fake FBI raid. But...later Jonathan gets Lionel to call off his men by
threatening to reveal that Lionel was responsible for the raid. How did
Jonathan find that out - he never met with Clark after the Lex/Clark
confrontation. Why wouldn't he think Lex was responsible, for instance?
Clark says to Swann that his father is dying - since when? Didn't the
heart bypass surgery take care of that? Jonathan's been a little weak
since then, but there's been no indication since then that he's going to
For a simple three-word message ("I am waiting"), the message on
Swann's screen seems absurdly large. There are at least two lines of
text - one is continuous and the other has large gaps in it. The other
lines may or may not be repeats, but even so it seems like Kryptonian is
a very inefficient language, word-to-character-to-meaning wise.
Clark accuses Swann of betrayal, but then seems to accept the message
Swann shows him at face value. Couldn't Swann have forged it? Swann
doesn't seem to have a reason to forge it, but then again everything he
does in this episode is rather oblique.
Season One -
Season Two -
Season Four -
Season Five -
Season Six - Season Seven
Extinction - Slumber -
Perry - Relic -
Shattered - Asylum -
Whisper - Delete -
Velocity - Obsession -
Truth - Memoria -
Forsaken - Covenant
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