As stand alone episodes go, I really enjoyed this episode. And it served its purpose in the way it further developed Clois, and showed Chloe that she needs to start living again after Jimmy's death. Plus, it tapped into the psyche of most of the viewers by showing a little boy becoming the superhero he had read and dreamed about for so long. We also saw the return of Zatanna, the magician and rather intense heroine who made an appearance last season.
Alex, or Stephen as he was known for most of the episode, served as the stereotypical boy whose had more than just a troubled life who constantly dreams of becoming someone, or anyone who is strong enough to stand up to those who have hurt him. I couldn't help see a reference to Tom Hank's 'Big' when he was playing the x-box while a bewildered - and adult Chloe looked on. And while it did materialize that her hero and supposed date for the evening was a twelve year old boy, he did manage to show her in his own innocent way that she needs to break free of the worries and the ties that make her the watchtower and start living life. We did see echoes of this also in previous episodes, with John the Martian telling her that she needs to see the world through her own eyes not just a computers every once in a while. For the first time there also seemed a suggestion of a possible relationship between Oliver and Chloe by the end of the episode. They seemed pretty close when he was teaching her how to fire the arrow, and she seemed glad to be touched by him.
Zatanna was a main feature of this episode. It was her father and his rebellious days that saw the creation of the cursed comic. Her main purpose this episode though, was to show Clark how much he likes (or loves) Lois and that he needs to keep the supposed 'spark' alive with her to get to the fire. I liked his eventual honesty as well to Lois, as had he not told her about the [essentially coerced] kiss with Zatanna than I think that would have ended the episode on a slightly sour note with a lie hanging over them. Lois' response as ever was great, kissing some random in front of him so he understood how it felt. I found myself wishing the episode wasn't about to end also, which is always a good sign, as I wanted to see the pair of them looking ridiculous (if Lois' storm trooper outfit was anything to go by) together at the ball.
Lois was the comic relief as usual this week. She looked completely dorky but hilarious as the storm trooper, and I wasn't shocked at all to see it was her after she took her mask off. I really enjoying seeing Clark sift through her fancy dress wardrobe, showing all the ridiculous outfits we have seen her in, from the French maid costume in the Luthor mansion to the ever skimpy American flag bikini in the stripper club. Without Lois, Smallville would be lacking the ever essential ingredient of hilarity. Erica Durance really is a credit to the show.
To conclude, this episode didn't really bring much to the season is the way that it was a single storyline that will probably not be referenced to again. That being said, it was most definitely enjoyable and in essence developed the ever important Clois relationship and taught Chloe a lesson or two along the way. Roll on next week...