After Ryans mother died, his stepfather James Gibson got married again and started exploiting Ryan's abilities in order to rob pawnshop owners. Fleeing from the Gibsons, he ran out onto the highway where Martha Kent accidentally hit him with her car. He feigned amnesia and stayed with the Kents, becoming Clark's "little brother" for a few days. He learned about Clark's secret by reading Martha's mind. After his evil stepfather was arrested and his stepmother killed, Ryan moved to Edge City with his aunt.
When he began to have unexplained migraines, his aunt took him to the Summerholt Research Facility in Metropolis. Dr. Lawrence Garner discovered that Ryan had a brain tumor which was causing his telepathy. Ryan's aunt left him with the doctor and moved to Arizona. Ryan called Clark to tell him that Dr. Garner was holding him against his will and experimenting on him. Clark broke Ryan out, and with Lex Luthor and Judge Ross' help, he got a restraining order to grant the Kents temporary custody. Clark considered Ryan the little brother he never had, but shortly after, Ryan fell ill and had to be admitted to the hospital. It was discovered that he had an inoperable brain tumor and Clark did everything he could to prevent his death, including running over 400 miles to convince a famous doctor to treat the boy. However, his treatment was not completely successful and only gave him a few extra days. At Ryan's request, he spent his last few days with Clark; Clark was devastated when Ryan died.
Ryan's telepathy was limited to what people were thinking about at the time. He was also unable to read the mind of non-humans, like Kryptonians.
- Ryan James was played by Ryan Kelley for two episodes.
- Ryan's favorite comic book was Warrior Angel, which is also Lex and his childhood friend Duncan Allenmeyer's favorite comic.
- Ryan was the first metahuman, that Clark encountered, whose powers didn't come from exposure to Kryptonite.
- Ryan was the first secret keeper outside of Clark's family who saw Clark's spaceship and learned that he was an alien.
- Ryan was the first of Clark's loved ones to die.
- 2 Appearances of Ryan James (Smallville)
- 1 Images featuring Ryan James (Smallville)
- Quotations by or about Ryan James (Smallville)
- Character Gallery: Ryan James (Smallville)
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