Smallville Recap: Rabid
Like many Smallville fans, I dreaded the idea of zombies on the show, but I think it ended up being a fun and scary ride. With the effects of Jimmy’s death still plaguing the minds of Clark, Chloe and Oliver, it was good to see they’re all one more step toward regaining their trust in each another again. But in the meantime, they’re coming to get you, Lois!
In the opening teaser, Clark Kent wakes up in the Watchtower, his arm blackened a bit from receiving a puncture by a needle that is dripping green fluid. He gets a text from Oliver Queen, “I lost her.” Clark speeds to the Daily Planet. Outside, Metropolis is looking a lot like London did at the beginning of 28 Days Later. When Clark enters the building, we see it is in shambles and has an ominous bloody handprint on one of the bullpen’s glass doors. He sees Lois Lane, crouched over a copier. But when she turns around, we see that Lois has red eyes, looks a bit pale, and has developed a drooling problem.
After the opening credits, we find out that what happened before the credits will go down in twelve hours! We are at the Daily Planet again, but it looks better. Clark is monitoring a scanner when Lois arrives to pull an all-nighter with him. A classic Lois and Clark moment happens when they both hear about a fire in the city. Before they can bolt out the door, the Red-Blue Blur has it taken care of and Clark all of the sudden smells like smoke, but has grabbed coffee for Lois.
When the scanner lights up again talking about a high speed motorcycle chase, Clark uses his super-breath to cool Lois’s coffee down. She complains to him about the coffee, and Clark gives her an innocent but dopey look that Tom Welling must have learned from the Christopher Reeve School for Playing Clark Kent. It is so much fun to see those moments where he acts silly but you know he’s on top of more than she realizes. They truly emulate the many incarnations of that same relationship in previous TV series and movies.
The motorcycle in the chase is actually being driven by Oliver. Feeling partly responsible for Jimmy Olsen’s death, he is hardly the hero that he used to be as Green Arrow. Instead of throwing himself into his work like Clark did, he’s out getting thrills from baiting the police. When Clark stops him to talk, Oliver accuses him of having a God complex. Clark admits that Oliver was right about Davis, which means he could have saved Jimmy if he followed Oliver’s advice to kill the human side of Doomsday. Oliver speeds off with the police hot on his tail, in more ways than one as we shall see.
Tess Mercer’s search for the missing Kryptonians is interrupted rudely by a pack of zombies which quickly dispatch her security team after cutting the power. In the scuffle, Tess ends up getting bitten on the shoulder. She uses a handy samurai sword to kill both of the zombies. Let me take a moment to say, as a fan of all things zombie-related, these guys looked like their image was borrowed quite heavily from 28 Days Later. They ran, their eyes were red, they were awful drooly and they seemed to be completely full of rage. It was an excellent job with makeup and they were pretty scary for a primetime show. When Lois and Clark visit Tess in the hospital, she has already turned into one of these monsters and throws Lois into a wall before being restrained and sedated.
At Clark’s request Doctor Emil Hamilton, who has been working with Chloe Sullivan in the Watchtower, talks with a specialist about Tess’s sickness. Dr. Coats tells Dr. Hamilton that it was an airborne virus and they are going to quarantine the hospital and the Daily Planet, because that was the building Tess was picked up from. Clark overhears this and whisks off again to find Lois.
After turning off the power, (don’t ask me how they keep thinking about this), the zombies rush Lois at the Planet. Clark shows up and they both fight off flesheaters. Unfortunately, Lois gets bitten on the leg. When they are safe, Lois tells Clark they should exchange secrets in case this is the end. She admits to Clark that she was not into helping the Blur just to save people, but also because she wants to be with him. She feels a connection with him and also says, “I don’t want to be alone anymore.”
Meanwhile, at Luthorcorp, we see the police have caught up with Oliver Queen. Well, actually only one cop and she has gotten Oliver’s shirt off. When she goes for his belt buckle, she discovers a small camera planted in there. Disgusted, she leaves despite his pleas of innocence. He looks at the camera. “Mercy,” he grumbles through his diet of alcohol and speed. He shows up at the Daily Planet with a sawed-off shotgun, “I was looking for Tess when the whole building went Resident Evil.”
Clark, Lois and Oliver compare notes about the virus and they soon figure that it is triggered when someone wakes up from dozing. They realize there are only a few hours left before the sun comes up and the whole of Metropolis wakes up and has brains for breakfast. Clark has Oliver and Lois wait in an elevator while he goes to get help. Clark tells Oliver not to let Lois fall asleep.
By studying some of Tess’s blood, Dr. Hamilton and Chloe discover that the only way to make an antidote is to mimic an enzyme that has only been seen in Davis Bloom’s blood. Clark shows up and tells Dr. Hamilton since he is not from Earth either, his blood should help. Hamilton takes this discovery as less of a revelation than an awakening. “Well that explains a lot.” Yes, Dr. Hamilton, Clark Kent is not just some meteor freak from Smallville. He’s the real deal.
Hamilton uses a needle dipped in liquid kryptonite (the stuff can be gotten over the counter these days) to draw Clark’s blood. It makes Chloe freak out a bit because it hurts enough to make him pass out. It was good to see Chloe feel something for Clark other than hurt feelings. She doesn’t want to leave Clark in that condition, but Hamilton needs her help with creating the antidote. A jet is standing by.
Back in the elevator, Oliver puts Lois quickly to sleep by talking about how far he has fallen. Zombie Lois knocks Oliver to the ground and escapes through the elevator’s glass ceiling. As we near the time when the teaser took place, we now see why Oliver texted Clark, “I lost her.” Clark finds Zombie Lois at the Daily Planet and gets thrown out into the street by her. He grabs her from behind and restrains her.
In the skies over Metropolis, Dr. Hamilton and Chloe seed the atmosphere to create a rainstorm. This will ensure that all of Metropolis is drenched in raindrops carrying the antidote. We get a great shot of Clark holding Lois desperately as the clouds start to rumble. When the rain falls, Lois turns back into a human again. Clark holds her as the sun starts to come out and people start to gather in the streets.
Clark catches up to Oliver later, who thanks Clark for showing him who he really is. After Clark leaves, we see Oliver burning his Green Arrow costume! Back at the Kent Farm, Clark has decided to take his picture of Lana Lang out of his wallet and put it in his creepy Lana scrapbook. Perhaps he has moved on this time? Lois drops by and tells him he never told her his secret. After they gaze at each other for a moment, Lois tells him to “keep the mystery.” Stepping out onto his porch, Lois falls again into the prophetic dream she has had before. This time, it is during a waking moment. Could the terrible events she sees in the dream be drawing closer?
In the final scene, we find out who the culprit is. Dr. Coats was a Kryptonian in Zod’s militia that decided to release the virus to get rid of humanity. Zod is infuriated because it was a risk to their anonymity. But Coats has discovered something in all of this mess he created. He has seen the S-shield, which is the symbol for the House of El. Coats tells Zod that this proves Jor-El is alive on Earth and keeping the powers of the yellow sun to himself. But Coates now has something they can track “Jor-El” with, his blood. Zod asks Coats to kneel before him, and even though the information Coats gave him was valuable, Zod kills him for disobedience. As Zod contemplates what lies ahead, he stares up at the streams of sunlight he is being bathed in.
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