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#741 of 748 Chris

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Posted October 08 2007 - 03:06 PM

Just finished "Justice". Ok, now I'm openly rooting for the bad guy. So, the "Justice League of America" veiled is basically a bunch of crazed terrorist.

Aquaman comes back into the picture admitting he was out sinking whaling ships and leaving crews out... they raid a Luthor facility (33.1) and kill, by my count, 22 different people. Some with arrows, some snapping necks, some beaten to death. Wow, what a track record.

Then, they blow up property. I get that the show is supposed to be showing how terrible Lex is, but how can this be anything but vindication of the idea that the 'good guys' are psychotic vigilantes?

Adam, you above said hey, everyone deserves to be turned over to the authorities and cops.. and yet here, the heros go all ballistic on a bunch of peons, kill a bunch and decide to take some murderous shots at Lex with an arrow... there wasn't a cop or a judge anywhere that I saw..

Lex gives the "fighting for justice and democracy" I don't know if his goals are that noble, but those are basically the point... super heros who take pot shots to kill people and sink ships and blow up private property.. yeah, that's not justice, that's psychotic.

Hell, even in the comics, the Justice League worked with real law enforcement to turn people over and to make their case..

I know, I know how the story ends, and how it's being written.. but whoever is writing the justification for Lex is doing a hell of a lot better job then those writing the lame storyline for Clark and the goons.

I just "feel" Lex's side to this story and I just have almost no compassion for Clark's. And it's not that I really want to root for the bad guy, it's just that this storyline is such that I don't see the proposed "bad guy" as acting out of truly evil intent.

I'm reminded of Ender's Game and sequels. As Ender sits and and explains to his class (in "Speaker of the Dead") he points out that
the actor didn't know that his end result was "evil" until it was really laid out to him, because he didn't have the facts. So, when Ender killed all of the hive everywhere, he didn't know until much later what had been done.
While the act itself may have been "evil" viewed later, the person who did it didn't do it out of evil intentions. Lex doesn't strike me in any way as someone acting out of truly evil intentions.. not yet, at least.

I guess that's what infuriates me about the way Clark is written so much.. he knows, he has to know, that a lot of these actions -are- evil, he knows all the facts Lex doesn't, and it doesn't prevent him from doing goonish things.

*laugh* going back to Ender's type thought, Lex strikes me a lot like "Peter Wiggin" in the shadow series.. yes, some of his actions may seem "wrong" but his end goal, the one he is persuing, seems like the one of the best cause.. in the end, the world may be best without vigilante superheros.

(Admin note - spoiler added for Ender's Game.)
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#742 of 748 Chris

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Posted October 08 2007 - 05:52 PM

Fantastic, Fantastic turn of a character in the wedding episode of Season 6, as Lex clearly moves to the dark side. One of the best tellings of a character, a roller coaster of his beliefs and his viewpoint, very well told.

Clark's story, however, continues to be a muddy mess. In "Combat" he kills a kryptonian killer, and then feels incredible remorse... "how can I kill people.. how does that make me any better.." Uh, Clark, you've killed people in every season I've watched! From peons guarding a facility to meteor freaks, and now Clark feels remorse? I mean, just kind of struck me as tin ear.

I wonder how the writing staff on this show works.. Lex's 6 year arch is a true feat of incredible storytelling. Clark's arch is just.. blah, and if you're developing a hero they've sure weighed him down with lots of truely un-heroic moments..
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#743 of 748 Adam Lenhardt

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Posted October 08 2007 - 06:47 PM

I can't really go through your points any more, not because of your arguments but because it's just been so long since I watched these episode. I ran into that quite a bit in season five. Like the killing of peons thing; I don't remember him killing them, but that doesn't mean he didn't. If they slam against walls and shit, they're usually still alive. If necks snapped then, yeah, they're dead. I also think that if, by the end of the wedding episode, you're not on Clark's side our perspectives are just too vastly different to reconcile.

#744 of 748 Chris

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Posted October 09 2007 - 12:13 AM

Quote:
If necks snapped then, yeah, they're dead. I also think that if, by the end of the wedding episode, you're not on Clark's side our perspectives are just too vastly different to reconcile.

That's what I'm saying though.. by the end of the wedding episode, it's really clear that Lex -is- evil, and his story is so very well told. And while Clark is default the opposing force, and Lex is clearly evil, they just need to do something to better make Clark the force of "Truth and Justice", which has been lacking.

This isn't saying it has to be clear to the viewer now that he is that, it's just saying that I'm kind of dissapointed in how brilliantly laid out Lex's story arch has been in comparison to Clark's. I think the problem is, while Lex's actions are (now that I'm at the last episode of the season) deplorable, and they have very effectively turn him into an evil character, they haven't done anything to really change the heart of his cause, instead the case on that end continues to get stronger.

Now that I've finished Season 6, the whole thing seems like this:

Jor El who had kind of moved into the morally ambiguous camp for a while, after the Season 1/2/3 threats, notes that Clark should conquer, and demands that people die for his favor.. then moving into the good guy camp somewhat in 4/5, goes way back into the evil camp as we learn through the "Martian Bounty Hunter" that he basically knew the meteor freaks would happen on earth and they were Clark's "test" so the Martian Bounty Hunter couldn't intervene until Clark found his way. So, through all the red Kryptonite mess, the hundreds of infected people, all of those they harmed, etc.. humanity is only a guinea pig to Jor El, which puts him clearly back into the "evil" camp.

In the last two episodes, Lionel gets all confusing. He blackmailed Lana for Clark's own good (?) which is hard to really follow how convoluted that is, but it's kind of the tale of the "good guys" who have all sorts of mixed motivations etc. He tries to bring down Bizzaro Clark only to make that situation worse, etc.

Clark - is slowly, but assuredly moving into the camp of the force of good. The last four episodes of the season do a good job framing Clark as the last possible resistence to the alien attack (even if he is basically the reason why it's happening)

33.1 / Ares / etc. - Now they through a few wierd lines in the wrap up. At least a few Senators DID know about Ares, and it apparently did receive federal funding. And it makes the feds deep into bed in the kryptonian "fight to the death" type stuff that was happening at military bases. So, was Lex really locking people up totally as a private citizen, or did the government know? If the government knew, it pretty much saps all the "private evil" out of it. If he was taking government money for it, which is implied, then the whole thing takes a completely different angle. And while the story has very effectively put Lex in the evil camp (fake pregnancy, the doctor killing) the other implication that soldiers volunteered for Ares comes as not so surprising.. heck, in WWII, our government conducted all sorts of drug trials on troops that we know of just because of the Freedom of Information Act.. things like lowering the ammount of sleep needed, experimental malaria vaccines, food additives to stop sickness, etc. Lionel reveals that Lex knows about the wraiths. Lex knows nothing about "Phantom Zone" or any of that other stuff.. but now he sees aliens as a full fledged attack on earth. And, he's seen in person them rip people to shreds and be unstoppable.. I'm sure it wasn't that hard for him to show the footage to senators and others and get them to agree that volunteers or whatever were needed to stop it. I'm just saying the reveal that the government did know about these projects either leaves the audience thinking the government is corrupt and evil or that maybe despite the fact that he's turned into a psychotically evil person, his idea at it's base was at least viable.

Lana - really grew as a character. Finally went beyond the whiny little girl stereotype she was played into in the last five eps of the season. Great character development.

Chloe - well, now we know she's a meteor freak. Too bad she didn't just switch bodies with Lois or something, because Lois + Clark = no chemistry at all, Clark + Chloe = great chemistry. I would have preferred Lois die, and Chloe go into hiding by taking Lois by line and pretending to be her. Would have killed two birds at once.


Now that he's getting to play the truly "evil" Lex, Rosenbaum is absolutely rocking the house as he chews up all the scenery around him and just takes over the scenes he's in.
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#745 of 748 Inspector Hammer!

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Posted October 09 2007 - 12:33 AM

Chris, I really must ask that if your so dissatisfied with the show's hero than why continue to watch? Your obviously not enjoying yourself outside of Lex so what's the point?

Merely asking.

And i've never seen Clark snap anyone's neck that I can recall and i've seen the first 4 seasons three times over and season 5 twice. Lex is clearly evil and to the majority of fans Clark is equally as good...they are total polar opposites.

Clark makes mistakes it's clear, but he's learning and everything that happens to him and every lesson he learns will aid him and make him the man of steel. It's a shame your failing to see his comparable goodness and decency compared to Lex's corruption and darkness.
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#746 of 748 Chris

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Posted October 09 2007 - 01:39 AM

Surprisingly, I find the show a blast to watch. I'm not saying this to flame the show. I'm saying that it is a blast to watch because I think the real strength of the show is that it's reasonable to form an alternate view point on the whole mythos and ground it in what the show provides. I -love- that.

I'm dissappointed in Clark, but the show is broad enough in scope that it gives viewers like me plenty of reason to watch and root along.. we just may be rooting for the opposition at times Posted Image

Out of recommendations (and you'll laugh but it was yours in another thread) I took a week and a half and zapped through the series. And I really enjoyed it. I'm not saying any of the above to bash the show, just the character.. I'm just saying, looking at it in a different way, the show did a great job setting up the role of the devil's advocate. And I -love- that.

So, don't take it that I don't enjoy the show or I think ill of the show, I do enjoy it.. I just like a different angle to it.

As to this:

Quote:

And i've never seen Clark snap anyone's neck that I can recall and i've seen the first 4 seasons three times over and season 5 twice. Lex is clearly evil and to the majority of fans Clark is equally as good...they are total polar opposites.

When they decide to break into the facility in "Justice", Green Arrow shoots two or three guards with arrows.. and I'm assuming they don't get back up when it goes through the heart. Clark races through a pair who shoot each other (and he doesn't grab the bullets) so I'm assuming if these aren't dead at that moment, they are surely dead when the building blows. Aquaman walks out of a room with four bleeding bodies on the floor as Cyborg frees him. Cyborg crushes two people into walls. Before he frees Impulse, Clark flings two guards through pylons and knocks them out flat (if not kill them outright) as he escapes with Impulse.

They then blow the building up. (?)

In prior seasons, on Red Kryptonite Clark goes on a robbing spree and blows up a few cop cars, as well as anyone else that got hurt in that as he acted like a thug.

Clark, outside of killing meteor freaks, though, has been pretty good about not killing innocent bystanders Posted Image But the rest of the Justice League has been nothing of the sort.. all we've seen of them is events specifically designed where people will and do get killed. So, Clark is clearly morally superior to them.

Look, I'm not saying anything to say I "hate the show". I really enjoy it Posted Image But I just enjoy it differently, and the show writers, especially whoever is writing the Luthorcorp storyline is doing an absolute brilliant job of providing an incredibly effective case for the devil's advocate. I have to say though, going back through this thread now, it appears at least a few others notice that there seems to be a ton of Red-K episodes which really devolve Clark's character and continue to flash his liabilities.

So, Don't Hurt Me Hammer Posted Image Posted Image I do enjoy the show, and now I'll watch the DVR'd first two eps of the season.
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#747 of 748 troy evans

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Posted October 09 2007 - 05:14 AM

Chris you touch on some very valid points. Even in the comic books JLA members have been responsible for many deaths. Thier goal is to the greater good and they don't seek out to kill or have people die even accidentally. However, even heroes can't save everyone and some people decide thier own fates with the choices they make as to which side of the law they are on. Sometimes villians clearly don't give you a choice or push to the point of causing thier own deaths. Superman's hands are not clean and to see them dealing with that at his beginnings is great writing. They are giving him a very broad character development rather than just a goodie two shoes scope I think he's always had given to him. These things make you see he is human regardless of where he comes from, at least emotionally. His choice not to partake of Jor-el's wisdom has only further developed him into the good hero who we know to have benifited from those down home values instilled in him by the Kent's. His writing has been done very well. Now, Lex Luthor's writing has been done at least twice as well. Your hero is only as good as his villian. I think the writing staff knows and grasps that if Clark's story was on par with or overshadowed Lex's story people wouldn't care. The show is about Superman and we need stronger character devolpement of the surrounding characters for we already know Superman very well. Smallville has been a great re-invention of the Superman mythos and for me has become stronger and stronger as the years go by. Also, it was great to see Martian Manhunter's character in this season for he has been involved in every incarnation of the JLA. The writers are on top of thier game and have given continuity even a comic book fan can be proud of. Well done.
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#748 of 748 Chris

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Posted October 09 2007 - 06:03 AM

Troy: brilliant response. I agree wholeheartedly with almost everything you say. I think the real strength of the show is the way it has paid careful care to the motivations of characters. As I implied, Lex has been a slowly evolving character, and has slowly been seen as someone reasonably obsessed with the unknowable as someone who spun out of control in season 6. And now with Season 7 basically implying that all his work was at least with the passing knowledge of the government, it lends a whole knew level to how we evaluate a whole lot of characters..

I'm secretly wondering whether or not this will tie Martha Kent's position in the US Senate to things like Ares and 33.1, as she would be an easy fit to look into what the government knows and why it helped finance the operations...
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