Ally is still the looming threat, but several subplots come to a head in “Anti-Hero”. Clark works together with Tal-Rho even while his family falls apart. Meanwhile, Lana struggles to keep herself and her family together in the wake of Kyle’s revelations.
My apologies for this extremely belated review! Real-life gets in the way sometimes. I was anticipating doing a double review this week but I only discovered this morning that there was no new episode last night. Oops. Anyway, you have all now had a week to digest everything that happened in “Anti-Hero”, so come at me with any theories you may have!
For starters, do we think that Bizarro is really dead? It feels like they went through a lot of effort to introduce him just to kill him after only four episodes. There was so much more they could have done with him. Not to get too graphic, but there was a *sound* that gave the impression that Anderson killed him. But at the same time, Clark may have lied about him being dead just to throw the DOD off the trail.
On the flip side, I love seeing Tal-Rho back. I don’t know that he and Clark can ever really have a good relationship, but I actually really loved them teaming up to escape prison. And the fact that Tal-Rho was willing to sacrifice himself to save Clark says a lot about the kind of relationship Tal wants them to have. As does the, “Tell your son I’m sorry.” Clark’s response about telling him himself makes a redemption arc seem plausible. Last season I would have hated that; this season I’m actually digging this snarky, semi-helpful Tal.
Side note: I cannot believe that Clark loudly proclaims that Tal hurt his son…in English, when they had both speak Kryptonian later in the episode. It seems really stupid to let the DOD know that Superman has a son.
Sam confirms at the end of “Anti-Hero” that Anderson went AWOL. I’m curious as to how many of his actions were officially sanctioned. Even though he claimed to have permission, he was dodging the general’s calls throughout the episode. I wonder if he took “by any means necessary” to be blanket permission to do whatever he wanted to do. And then of course, he runs to Ally at the end of the episode, thereby legitimizing the ~bad vibes~ I was getting from him all along.
I am curious as to how he was so much more powerful than Clark, Tal, and Bizarro with the X-K. And how he seemed to develop multiple powers so quickly and control them so easily.
We’re not done with Jonathan’s X-K subplot, although I was disappointed with how it was handled in “Anti-Hero”. (I’m hoping that the longer this goes on, the better the payoff will be.) For starters, I have to wonder about the timing of Candice’s delivery. She just so happened to bring him 20 bottles of X-K right when the police were coming to check lockers? It’s extremely suspicious. Had she somehow been tipped off to the raid and took this as a chance to get rid of her stash and pin it on Jon?
I don’t necessarily have trouble believing that Jon, a teenage boy, would take the fall for his girlfriend, especially when he believes that she has so much more to lose than he does. He’s said that he feels left out of his own family, and here is a girl who supposedly likes him and gives him the attention he doesn’t seem to be getting at home. But he wouldn’t be ruining her life – she did that all on her own. One thing I cannot stand is people not dealing with the consequences of their actions. I know that Jon is doing what he thinks is right, and I cannot fault a young man for thinking that he is standing up for a person that he cares about.
But on the other hand, we almost never see their relationship. If you want me to feel invested in them as a couple, if you want me to really understand why Jon did what he did, then I need to see more than what we’ve seen. Right now, Candice doesn’t feel like a character, or even like Jon’s girlfriend. She feels like a plot device. And I hate that.
I am happy to see some meatier stuff for Jon, even though I hate that it revolves around drug use. The brief conversation we saw between Clark and Jon, where Clark came in just to kick Jon when he’s already down, had better not be the only time we see them interact about this. Those two barely spend any time together, and Jon had already told Lois that he feels left out of his own family. I understand that Clark believes that Jon won’t be truthful with him when he’s already not told Lois where he got the X-K, but I do wish Clark could have given Jon the opportunity to tell his father what he’s feeling.
Now, Clark does say that they’re going to have another conversation, and I sincerely hope we actually get to see it. After all, Clark made up with the DOD – despite the fact that they tried to kill him and his brother – offscreen.
Can I also say that I am extremely surprised that so far no one in the Kent family has mentioned the fact that Jon is not human, and therefore should not be taking Kryptonite of any kind because they have no idea what the long-term side effects might be?
I had theorized with the previous episode that this might be a way to further tie the family into the whole Ally thing. By showing Jon really getting along with Lucy, and his confession to Lois, I have to believe that eventually he will turn to Lucy and Ally. This is also the second time that Jon has been compared to Sarah and her suicide attempt, which has to be some kind of foreshadowing.
Aside from the conversation between Lois and Lana, which I loved and was happy to see, I am totally over the Cortez/Cushing family drama. At this point, I feel that they are pulling away much-needed screen time from the Kent family. Was Lana calling Dean out satisfying? Yes. But that doesn’t mean I want to see it instead of Clark and Jon having any sort of meaningful conversation.
“Anti-Hero” also brought back Sarah’s camp crush, Aubrey. When Lana suggested Sarah vent to a friend, I’m not going to lie, I was expecting her to go to Natalie. (Remember Natalie? Pepperidge Farm remembers.) I am not a fan of bringing back the girl Sarah kissed at camp, mostly for the fact that in this whole “cheating Kyle” subplot, no one has acknowledged that Sarah cheated on Jordan.
Does no one seriously not see the irony here? I cannot fathom how this fact has escaped anyone’s notice. Yes, one kiss is not the same as a six-month affair, but still. Sarah betrayed Jordan, yet someone she was made out to be the victim. There’s no way they gave Aubrey an in-person introduction for this one chat. Please don’t set up a love triangle that’s entire purpose is to serve as a catalyst for Jordan telling Sarah about his powers.
While there were a lot of things I liked about “Anti-Hero”, there were some things I could have done without. I can only hope as the season goes on that we actually get some of the Kent family dynamics that I loved about season 1.
Author: Jamie Sugah
Jamie has a BA in English with a focus in creative writing from The Ohio State University. She self-published her first novel, The Perils of Long Hair on a Windy Day, which is available through Amazon. She is currently an archivist and lives in New York City with her demon ninja vampire cat. She covers television, books, movies, anime, and conventions in the NYC area.
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