Most Memorable Episodes Of Smallville

Published on June 22, 2015. Updated October 2, 2019

Fans of Smallville aren’t completely over the fact that the show is off the air even though it has been six years since we said goodbye to Tom Welling as Superman and rocked out to Remy Zero’s “Save Me.” Thanks to a great ten season run from 2001-2011 and a continuation in comic books, fans got a lot out of the show and, even though it waned a bit in later seasons, it was undoubtedly one of the best TV series in recent years. With an outstanding cast and an intriguing storyline, Superman’s origin story series as Clark Kent retains loyal fans thanks to the surge in superhero material gracing both the big and small screens. This means there is no better time than now to look back on the best episodes the show produced. Check Out the 12 Most Memorable Episodes of Smallville!

12. “Homecoming” S10, E4

Even though Smallville was an impressive show from start to finish, many fans agree that things went downhill in later seasons, meaning that by season 10 it was about time to call it quits. As the final season, season 10 had to be noteworthy and the fourth episode into the season, “Homecoming,” ended up being one of the best of the whole series. As Smallville‘s 200th episode, it took us back to Smallville High and fans got some great flashbacks as the show started to say goodbye. It also amped up the final season with glimpses of the future, which featured Clark facing Darkseid for the first time, his future with Lois and a hilarious conversation that he has with his future self. Overall, this episode reminded us of how great the past nine seasons had been, how far the character’s had come and seemed to promise more good things before the season finished.

Source: CW

11.  “Rosetta” S2, E17

Season two’s “Rosetta,” which features Smallville’s “freak of the week” plotline, stands out above many other episodes for several reasons. First and foremost, our beloved original Superman Christopher Reeve made his appearance as Dr. Virgil Swann, a pivotal moment for the series and an important moment for the fans of Superman through the years. After everything that came after, this might be hard to remember now, but a quick glance back will remind fans that this is where Clark learns more than ever before about his Kryptonian heritage, including his name “Kal-El” and that he is “last son of Krypton.” This is a defining moment for Clark. Reeves’ appearance not only gives the show legitimacy, but it is also considered a passing of the torch between the actors, which is a big deal for fans of the entire Superman universe.

Source: WB

10. “Pilot” S1, E1

As one of the first superhero origin stories to come to the small screen, the Pilot episode of Smallville in 2001 meant that the show was establishing a new base for a new generation of Superman fans while simultaneously trying to please those who admired the hero for years. Luckily, the first seasons were the best and the very first episode set up the tone and feel for the series with great success. This episode made it clear that this show was about Clark Kent learning about himself and his powers while dealing with being a teenage boy with teenage drama. The mixture blew open the usual “teenage drama” category exemplified by the likes of Gilmore Girls and Dawson’s Creek. Right away, moments were burned into our minds for the remainder of the series, including Michael Rosenbaum as the most outstanding Lex Luthor and, more importantly, his close friendship with Clark. Who can forget Clark being bullied by the football team. The image of him strapped shirtless to a scarecrow pole is etched in our minds forever.

Source: WB

9. “Red” S2, E4

We have to hand it to Tom Welling, even though it was obvious that he was much older than a 14-year-old high schooler, he played the part of a young, naive, innocent and oh-so-polite and awkward teenage Clark Kent perfectly. While this is much appreciated for the centrality of “mild-mannered” Clark Kent to the story, there were times when we just wanted to shake him and make him do something unexpected and spontaneous. In “Red,” we finally got a rebellious Clark thanks to Red Kryptonite. After buying a class ring made with the rock, Clark gets bad-boy dangerous and, while he went evil throughout the series on several occasions, this was especially memorable because we finally got to see a confident and strong Clark. This was not only satisfying for fans, but Welling did it so well and so convincingly that it confirmed that he would be great at having an alter ego and could handle the role of being both Superman and Clark Kent.

Source: WB

8. “Lexmas” S5, E9

As much as every viewer appreciates a great “flashback” episode, which has become a staple in most long running series, Smallville gave us one heck of a “what if?” episode with season five’s “Lexmas.” We love Tom Welling, but there is no denying that Michael Rosenbaum’s superb acting as Lex Luthor elevated the show just a bit higher than if anyone else had played the role and for that reason we always appreciate a Lex-based episode. This episode was also memorable because it book-ended a happy, middle-class Lex with the sinister Lex that we all know. After being shot and falling into a coma, Lex is shown an alternate reality in which he is married to Lana. They have one son and are expecting another baby; however, at the end of the vision, Lana dies in childbirth. Afterwards Lex explains that while he was happy watching that reality, it is not what he wants. He believes money and power could have saved her. He then turns back to the real Lex and decides to reveal things about his senatorial opponent Jonathan Kent. This episode showed us why Lex is the way he is. He is “evil;” however, he has good intentions at the root of his bad deeds, which helps us understand the character on a different level than simply as a diabolical super villain.

Source: CW

7. “Phantom” S6, E22

“Phantom” is a memorable episode because Clark finally reveals to Lana who he really is — although she already knew after figuring out most of it herself. As a season finale episode, this one was insane, action-packed and continuously exciting and shocking. The opening sequence is violent and has a much darker tone. Fans weren’t even sure if they had tuned in to the right show because of this. In this episode, we get three pretty great cliffhangers. The possible deaths of Chloe, Lana and Lois bring fans to the very last edge of their seat.

Source: CW

6.”Reckoning” S5, E12

“Reckoning” holds a lot of weight when it comes to great television episodes as a whole, which is what makes it one of the more memorable episodes of Smallville. Before the opening credits even roll, Clark takes Lana to the Fortress of Solitude and tells her the truth about his origins and identity and then proposes to her. The fact that this was an early scene alerted us to the fact that much bigger things were to come and did they ever. After reverting time to stop Lana’s death, Jonathan Kent dies instead. Although fans know this is an iconic part of Clark Kent’s history, we did not know how it was going to happen. We witness another shift in Clark’s character development as he takes on more responsibility and is forced to trust his own decisions because he doesn’t have his father to turn to. Things take an even more unexpected turn as Clark turns back time to prevent Lana’s death and then decides not to tell her his secret or propose again, which further strains their already strained relationship.

Source: CW

5. “Descent” S7, E16

Season seven’s “Descent” was Lex Luthor’s parallel to the Clark’s “Reckoning” episode. Again, viewers were shocked before the credits ran. While the show is known for dragging out plotlines and reversing things we thought already happened, we got another unexpected surprise — the image of Lex pushing his own father Lionel Luthor from the Luthorcorp window. As much as losing his father meant a shift towards the hero he was destined to be for Clark, Lex murdering his father was a defining moment for Lex’s turn to the villainous Lex Luthor we had been waiting for and had already seen developing. Losing yet another major character, the tone of the episode was absolute and the distinct imagery of only Clark and Lex standing at opposite ends of Lionel’s grave versus the packed funeral service of Jonathan Kent spoke volumes. Just remembering this episode can send chills up your spine all over again.

Source: CW

4. “Finale” S10, E21

When a show runs for ten seasons, loyal fans are in it for the long haul including all the ups and downs, incredible storylines, great episodes and bad ones, all leading up to one final send-off after ten years of devotion. Some fans loved Smallville‘s last episode, others did not. Regardless, it was memorable because it was the goodbye to a loved show and cast, and an example of just how far a show can come. The episode could have done a better job with Clark finally fulfilling his Superman destiny, but fans who stuck through FINALLY got to see him fly, something that the original creators swore would never happen. Marking the end and the final pull away of the town of Smallville’s Clark Kent to the city of Metropolis’s Superman, this episode paid tribute to where it all began by focusing on Clark’s past and using Jonathan Kent as Jor-El’s vessel for the final time. This brought us back to the show’s core themes of family and values. After ten long and somewhat prolonged seasons, the incredibility of embracing Superman was rushed, but still very memorable.

Source: CW

3. “Commencement” S4, E22

Season four was definitely not one of the strongest of the seasons; however, the final episode, “Commencement,” is one of the best in the entire episode canon because it concludes the kid’s high school years. This episode pulled together the frustrating storylines of Lana becoming a witch and Clark’s football stardom and was quite thrilling thanks to the impending second meteor shower, which is counted down throughout the episode. With the meteor shower sequence causing more action in a few minutes than we had seen in four seasons — as well as blood, death and destruction — fans will never forget the final scene as Clark grabs the Crystal of Knowledge and throws it right at the screen, which we all know creates the Fortress of Solitude.

David Gray / © Warner Bros. / Courtesy: Everett Collection

2. “Absolute Justice” S9, E11

Being the only other two-part Smallville episode besides the finale, we already know that season nine’s “Absolute Justice” is one of the best and most memorable of the show. Bringing in DC Comics CCO Geoff Johns to write three episodes could not have gone any better, which is made obvious by one of the results being this episode. This is huge for the Superman story arc we had been willing Clark into for nine seasons. Bringing to life the Justice Society of America did wonders for the show as fans who were criticizing more than applauding once again gave the show their full attention as Clark met up with Dr. Fate, Hawkman and Star Girl. Johns proved that writing is just as effective for bringing quality to a show as a high-budget because this episode did the DC Comics Universe proud, but kept it within the cash confines of Smallville‘s production costs.

Source: CW

1. “Metamorphosis” S1, E2

Some will agree with this episode being at the top spot, but many will not; however, there are legitimate reasons for “Metamorphosis” being the best episode of Smallville. While the Pilot promised great things, it was the second episode’s job to keep the momentum going and gain full fledged speed to lock in fans and that it did. Being one of those fans who firmly believes the first few seasons were the best, the “freak of the week” plot device was perfect for this show. After being introduced to the cast in the Pilot, we got our first “freak” with Bug-Boy, Greg Arkin. The fact of the matter is, even after all the twists and turns the show has taken, fans still remember this early episode because of the impact this plot device had. We also get to see Clark step up and learn more about his powers and responsibilities while at the same watching his budding relationship with Lana, which is at the centre of the show for six seasons.

©The WB/ Brian Cyr
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