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The Journey of "Smallville": A Deep Dive into Lex Luthor and Clark Kent's Relationship

Who still remembers the series Smallville? It was my favorite series as a child. Although I still love it.

By Oliver GreenPublished about a month ago 6 min read
The Journey of "Smallville": A Deep Dive into Lex Luthor and Clark Kent's Relationship
Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

"Smallville," the iconic TV series that aired from 2001 to 2011, captivated audiences with its fresh take on the Superman mythology. Focusing on the formative years of Clark Kent in the fictional town of Smallville, Kansas, the series explores his journey from a high school student to the iconic superhero, Superman. This blog post delves into the intricate relationship between Clark Kent and Lex Luthor, charting their journey from friends to adversaries, and ultimately, highlighting Clark's transformation into Superman.

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The Encounter of Lex Luthor and Clark Kent

The initial meeting between Lex Luthor (Michael Rosenbaum) and Clark Kent (Tom Welling) is nothing short of dramatic. Their encounter sets the tone for their complex relationship throughout the series.

A Fateful Accident

In the pilot episode, Clark saves Lex from a near-fatal car accident. Lex’s car plunges off a bridge, and Clark’s superhuman abilities allow him to rescue Lex from drowning. This event marks the beginning of their friendship and is pivotal for several reasons:

  • Immediate Bond: Despite their vastly different backgrounds, Clark and Lex form an instant connection. Lex, the son of billionaire Lionel Luthor, contrasts sharply with Clark, who was raised on a humble farm by his adoptive parents, Jonathan and Martha Kent.
  • Moral Contrast: This incident highlights the moral dichotomy between the two characters, foreshadowing the eventual tension. Lex is drawn to the mysterious nature of Clark’s abilities, while Clark is wary of Lex’s obsession with power.

Lex's Obsession Begins

Lex’s near-death experience sparks an obsession with uncovering the truth about Clark. He starts investigating the strange events in Smallville, particularly those linked to meteor showers, which are a recurring element in the series.

Lex Luthor and Clark Kent's Journey Together and Their Conditions

The evolving relationship between Lex and Clark is central to "Smallville’s" narrative. Their friendship is marked by mutual admiration, underlying tension, and an eventual falling out.

Mutual Respect and Growing Suspicion

In the early seasons, Lex and Clark share a deep respect for each other. Lex often helps Clark out of tricky situations, using his resources to protect Clark’s secrets. However, this friendship is fraught with growing suspicion:

  • Clark's Secret: Clark's superhuman abilities and alien origin are a constant source of tension. Lex’s relentless pursuit of the truth strains their relationship. Despite Clark’s efforts to maintain their friendship, his secretive nature leads to trust issues.
  • Lex’s Ambitions: Lex’s ambition and quest for power increasingly come to the forefront. His actions become more morally ambiguous, and his willingness to go to great lengths to achieve his goals creates a rift between him and Clark.

Significant Episodes

Several key episodes highlight the evolution of their relationship:

  • "Shattered" (Season 3, Episode 8): Lex's mental stability is questioned as he uncovers disturbing truths about his past and his father. Clark’s attempts to help Lex showcase his loyalty, but also the strain of keeping his own secrets.
  • "Covenant" (Season 3, Episode 22): Lex discovers the hidden room in his mansion filled with information about Clark and the meteor shower, leading to a major confrontation and the eventual dissolution of their friendship.

Clark and Lex as Adversaries

The shift from friends to adversaries is a gradual yet inevitable progression in "Smallville." As Lex's darker nature emerges, Clark’s role as a hero becomes more defined.

The Breaking Point

The breaking point in their relationship is marked by several significant events:

  • Betrayal and Deception: Lex’s increasing involvement in morally questionable activities, including experiments on meteor-infected individuals, sets him against Clark. Clark’s inability to trust Lex further deteriorates their relationship.
  • Lana Lang: Both characters' romantic interest in Lana Lang (Kristin Kreuk)
  • adds another layer of complexity. Lex's marriage to Lana and his subsequent manipulation of her trust are critical turning points.

LeX in the elegantly evil point of view

Lex’s transformation into the archetypal villain is masterfully depicted. By the later seasons, Lex embraces his darker tendencies, solidifying his role as Clark’s nemesis:

  • Elegant Evil: Lex’s character is often portrayed as elegantly evil. His suave demeanor and calculated actions contrast with his increasingly sinister motives. The elegance in his villainy is highlighted through his strategic moves and intellectual battles with Clark.
  • Power and Control: Lex's pursuit of ultimate power and control over not just Smallville, but the world, underscores his descent into villainy. His desire to harness the power of the Kryptonian technology and abilities leads to several conflicts with Clark.

Superman from Clark

The journey of Clark Kent into becoming Superman is not just about acquiring superpowers but also about developing the moral compass that defines a hero.

The Evolution of a Hero

Throughout the series, Clark’s evolution is marked by significant milestones:

  • Embracing Destiny: Clark's realization of his destiny to become Superman is a gradual process. Key mentors like Jonathan Kent and Jor-El, his Kryptonian father, play pivotal roles in guiding him.
  • Moral Challenges: Clark faces numerous moral challenges that shape his character. His commitment to protecting humanity often conflicts with his personal desires and relationships.

Key Episodes and Milestones

Several episodes are crucial in Clark’s journey to becoming Superman:

  • "Rosetta" (Season 2, Episode 17): Clark discovers his Kryptonian heritage and the true nature of his abilities through the assistance of Dr. Virgil Swann, played by Christopher Reeve. This episode is a turning point in understanding his destiny.
  • "Finale" (Season 10, Episodes 21 and 22): The series finale culminates in Clark fully embracing his role as Superman. His final battle with Darkseid and the iconic moment of donning the Superman suit symbolize the completion of his transformation.

Examples and Case Studies

Clark's Secret

Clark’s secret is a recurring theme that drives much of the show’s drama. His struggle to maintain his dual identity while protecting his loved ones is depicted in various episodes:

  • "Pilot": Clark’s immediate struggle with revealing his abilities to his friends and the lengths he goes to protect his secret are established from the beginning.
  • "Exodus" (Season 2, Episode 23): Clark’s decision to leave Smallville to protect his secret and his loved ones highlights the burden of his dual identity.

LeX is 2 important stages of elegant evil

Lex’s transformation into a villain is a study in character development. His descent is marked by critical choices and actions:

  • "Memoria" (Season 3, Episode 19): Lex’s attempt to recover lost memories about his mother and his traumatic childhood experiences provide insight into his complex psyche and the origins of his darker tendencies.
  • "Descent" (Season 7, Episode 16): Lex's ultimate act of patricide, killing his father Lionel Luthor, is a definitive moment in his complete embrace of evil.


The intricate relationship between Clark Kent and Lex Luthor is one of the most compelling aspects of "Smallville." Their journey from friends to adversaries and Clark’s eventual transformation into Superman are central to the series' appeal. "Smallville" not only redefined the superhero genre on television but also provided a deep and nuanced exploration of its characters.

"Smallville" was a beloved TV series that aired from 2001 to 2011, focusing on the early years of Clark Kent's life in the fictional town of Smallville before he becomes Superman. The cast of the series included:

  • Tom Welling as Clark Kent
  • Kristin Kreuk as Lana Lang
  • Michael Rosenbaum as Lex Luthor
  • Allison Mack as Chloe Sullivan
  • Erica Durance as Lois Lane
  • John Schneider as Jonathan Kent
  • Annette O'Toole as Martha Kent
  • John Glover as Lionel Luthor
  • Justin Hartley as Oliver Queen / Green Arrow
  • Cassidy Freeman as Tess Mercer
  • Sam Jones III as Pete Ross
  • Aaron Ashmore as Jimmy Olsen
  • Jensen Ackles as Jason Teague
  • Laura Vandervoort as Kara Zor-El / Supergirl
  • Erica Cerra as Deputy Sheriff Angela Hart
  • Callum Blue as Major Zod
  • Sam Witwer as Davis Bloome / Doomsday
  • Alan Ritchson as Arthur Curry / Aquaman
  • Serinda Swan as Zatanna Zatara
  • Terence Stamp as Jor-El (voice)

This ensemble cast brought the iconic DC Comics characters to life and made "Smallville" a memorable and enduring series for fans around the world.

Disclaimer: Links included in this blog may be affiliate links. If you purchase products using the links included I may receive a commission however, there is NO additional charge to you. If you opt to use anything I share you do so at YOUR OWN RISK and you take full responsibility for the outcome. Any advice and information shared on my blog is general only and is being shared without taking into account your particular circumstances and needs. Before acting on any advice shared you should assess or seek advice on whether it is appropriate for your needs, financial situation.


About the Creator

Oliver Green

❤️ 30 Years old

💰 Sink ( Single income, no kids)

👔 I work as a Blogger

📊 I love ChatGPT and AI

💻 Hobbies: Gamer, and the Reading.

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    Oliver GreenWritten by Oliver Green

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