Smallville 8.19: "Stiletto"

Something about this episode didn't hit me quite right, and it took a little time for me to realize what it was. Almost no one in this episode seemed to act in character. The most egregious examples were Lois and Chloe, but it didn't end there, and the episode as a whole didn't seem to mesh as a whole.

While Lois is certainly ambitious, it seems out of character for her to stage a scoop to put her name back on the front page. Even if she was inclined to do such a thing, I wouldn't expect her to do it in such a clunky manner. It would have been obvious to anyone with half a brain that Lois was making up a story, and that would have killed her career for good. Generally speaking, posing as a superhero in an attempt to get in with the "cape" crowd sounds logical, but it's something that might have worked better as a long-term plot thread.

Lois' secret identity, however, left much to be desired. The outfit was played for fan service, and it was designed to play on Erica's sex appeal. Unfortunately, it also emphasized that Erica is not quite as young as she used to be. Her hair and makeup made her look middle-aged at times. And since when does Lois have problems with high heels? Hasn't the character been seen in them often in the past?

Far worse, however, was the characterization for Chloe. Part of it could be attributed to her experiences with Brainiac and her breakup with Jimmy, but some things are fundamental. There's no way Chloe would risk the integrity of her data so casually, and I don't see how she would use encryption that could be cracked by organized crime. Chloe is the nerve center for a group that is combating enemies on the level of LuthorCorp, with resources far more talented and dangerous. Add to that her decision to hide Davis and clean up after his murderous messes, and I have no idea where they're going with this character at all.

We also have Chloe confronting Clark on what happened with Lana and the gap it left in his life, and he barely reacts. Stoicism in the face of deep emotional pain is hardly a new concept for heroes, but considering how the whole Lana arc felt disconnected from the season arc (and, in fact, disrupted it in a major way), this was as good a chance as any to make it all mesh. I'm not sure why they didn't address it more directly.


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