Smallville

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Tippi Blevins: B- | Grade It Now!
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Marked Men

In Metropolis, Cat is leading Clark to her wee bitty car. He has to fold himself into this minuscule auto like a circus clown, his knees practically pressed against his chest. He surveys his new surroundings with something like horror. The seats are pink and there's a pink stuffed animal staring at him from the dash. Oh, dear Lord, there are more stuffed animals on the driver's side. Meanwhile, an unknown man studies them from a distance. A twangy guitar chord announces him as an outlaw of the Western type. He flips a sort of red glass monocle over one eye. A digital readout from his perspective shows Cat and Clark from precisely 330 yards away. In the car, Cat perkily reminds Clark to put on his seatbelt. The unknown outlaw raises a revolver, aims, and fires. We follow the bullet from the barrel through an open window of a passing car, past a coffee cup in a cafe patron's hands, through the spokes of a bicycle, and so on. The bullet swerves and dodges and then zips through the tailpipe of Cat's pinkmobile. The bullet hits some crucial part of the car's innards just as Cat is saying "My grandpa always said 'seatbelts save lives!'" The car goes kablooey in slow motion. Clark grabs Cat and whooshes her to safety. "Oh my gosh, Clark," she mews. "We almost died!" Well, maybe next time.

Later, Clark is back at the office, studying the guilty bullet. It's somewhat accordion-shaped from its efforts but the letters "A R N T" are still visible on its side. A shaken Cat is at her desk, speaking on her cell phone in hushed tones. "Don't tell him it's me," she says to someone. "He'll just get upset." She cancels some prearranged "pickup" and then hastily hangs up when Clark approaches her. "You want to tell me what you got caught up in?" he asks. "Someone did just try to kill you." Cat tries to cover her secrets with a layer of kitty litter, but it's that cheap stuff and the stink of crap still comes through. She babbles about how Clark, much like Lois, sounds like a conspiracy theorist. "Always railing against the establishment, the normal people," she says. "Normal," Clark echoes. "Like you and me," she chirps. "God, it must have been hard listening to her justifications for all these alternative values and lifestyles." Clark gets puffy with indignation. It's not a lifestyle choice! Some of us are born that way! That we enjoy the company of other men in tight leather outfits is none of your concern! Cat laughs to think Clark might actually think all these vigilantes are "part of the natural plan." She pronounces them without a moral center. "That's easy to say when they can't come out and defend themselves," Clark says. Cat disagrees; the vigilantes could come out of the shadows any time but choose not to. She starts to relay something Godfrey said, but Clark tries to get back on task by telling her about the bullet. Cat is stunned. "Why would anyone want to kill me?" she asks. Clark goes through a long list in his head, but takes her to hide out in Smallville anyway.

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Smallville

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