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Smallville (TV Series) Episode: Zod

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Clark Kent is trapped in the Phantom Zone – a desolate world of ash and frozen wastelands. He quickly discovers that his powers will not aid him in this reality as he is attacked by horrific "Zoners" who inhabit the tundra. Clark soon meets Raya,

Quote1 Every world needs its heroes, Clark. They inspire us to be better than we are. And they protect us from the darkness that's just around the corner. Quote2
--Martha Kent

Appearing in "Zod"

Featured Characters:

Supporting Characters:


Other Characters:



  • Kryptonian dagger (Destroyed)
  • Kryptonian hard drive
  • Phantom Zone key
  • Kryptonian Crystal (First appearance)


Synopsis for "Zod"

Clark Kent is trapped in the Phantom Zone – a desolate world of ash and frozen wastelands. He quickly discovers that his powers will not aid him in this reality as he is attacked by horrific "Zoners" who inhabit the tundra. Clark soon meets Raya, another displaced Kryptonian who was once the assistant to his father Jor-El. Raya shows him a Kryptonian medallion, which is actually a key to escaping the Zone. However, it can only be activated by the blood of someone from the House of El.

Meanwhile back on Earth, Metropolis is gripped in chaos. Riots tear through the city streets and Lionel Luthor fights tooth and claw against gangs of thugs just to survive. He saves Chloe Sullivan from another group of tormentors, then gives her a gun so she can protect herself.

Atop the LuthorCorp building, Lex Luthor, possessed by the essence of the Phantom Zoner known as Zod surveys the carnage. Beside him is Lana Lang, who still hopes that some part of the real Lex Luthor still survives within him. Zod declares his intention to remake Earth into a new Kryptonian empire. He wants to keep Lana by his side to sire his heirs. His plans for world domination include hacking into the Pentagon's computer systems and taking control of the world's satellite systems.

Elsewhere, Martha Kent and Lois Lane survive the airplane crash, but Lois is in critical condition. Martha tries to send a mayday signal out over the plane's radio, but the two are suddenly whisked away to the Fortress of Solitude. There, Martha encounters the essence of Jor-El who tells her that Clark has been banished to the Phantom Zone. There is nothing he can do to help him. However, he does possess the means to stop Zod. He gives Martha a Kryptonian dagger and tells her that she must use it to kill Lex Luthor. This is the only way to stop Zod's control once and for all. Jor-El then teleports Martha and the insensate Lois Lane back home.

In the Phantom Zone, Clark and Raya encounter two more Phantom Zone prisoners, Nam-Ek and Aethyr. Raya appears to betray Clark and tells the others that Clark holds the key to escaping from the Zone. At the last moment however, Raya shows that she is truly on Clark's side and kills Nam-Ek. She gives Clark the medallion and he uses his blood to open a portal back home. Unfortunately, when he arrives back on Earth, several Zoners escape as well.

Later, Lana Lang goes to the Kent farm where she finds Martha and Lionel Luthor. Martha shows her the dagger and explains that this is the only thing that can stop Lex-Zod. Lana offers to do the deed, knowing that she is the only one who can close enough to Lex to use it. She goes to Luthor Mansion and tries to stab Lex, but the power of Zod is too much for her. He takes the dagger and breaks it in half. He admires Lana's bravery however and lets her live.

Clark finds Martha and Lionel who bring him up to speed with everything that has been taking place since he left. He then rushes off to Luthor Mansion to confront Lex-Zod. Clark uses his heat vision to destroy the alien hard drive that Lex was using to hack into the Pentagon. Enraged, Lex-Zod plows into Clark and the two go flying across the state. They eventually land in the middle of a field and Zod gets the upper hand on Clark. He tells Clark that if he swears allegiance to Zod, then he will allow those he loves most to live. Clark feigns submission, but this is just to lure Zod in close. Taking his hand in an apparent display of loyalty, Clark shoves Jor-El's Phantom Zone key into Lex-Zod's hand. The key draws Zod's essence out of Lex Luthor and traps it inside the medallion. Lex Luthor, now free of Zod, collapses to the ground with no memory of what has happened to him.

Clark then goes to the hospital to check on Lois. She vaguely remembers seeing a "palace of ice" and believed that she was in Heaven. Clark tells her that her severe injuries probably made her delusional. He then goes back to the farm where his mother offers him some sage advice on what it means to be a hero. He later meets Chloe back at the Daily Planet who introduces him to the Planet's intern photographer Jimmy Olsen.

Lex Luthor meanwhile, having been released from the hospital finds Lana Lang. He doesn’t remember anything, but he does know that he is responsible for everything that has happened. He is deeply burdened by his own guilt.

Back in his office at LuthorCorp, Lionel Luthor finds that he can still understand Kryptonian symbols even though he has been cut off from Jor-El.

The escaped Zoners travel about the globe enjoying their newfound freedom. One of them is seen in Argentina.


  • This episode first aired in the United States on September 28th, 2006.
  • Although Zod does not make a physical appearance himself in this episode, the character is patterned after the version seen in the films Superman and Superman II. A brief glimpse of Zod's true face can be seen in the final battle between Lex and Clark. The image is actually cropped footage of Terrence Stamp who played Zod in the original films. There are also two lines of dialogue that harken back to the theatrical Zod. In one scene, Lex-Zod commands Clark to "kneel before Zod". This has become something of a trademark quote of the original Zod. In another scene, Lex-Zod tells Lana, "Zod does not take orders. He gives them". This line is taken from Superman II, but in the film it was Ursa who spoke the line, not Zod himself.
  • First appearance of Jimmy Olsen in the series. Jimmy makes sporadic appearances throughout season six and becomes a recurring character in season seven. By season eight, he is a regular cast member and is featured in the opening title credits.
  • In this episode, Zod declares his intent to sire an heir with Lana Lang. The season eight episode "Bloodline" establishes that Zod has already had a child with his wife Faora. This child, conceived through unconventional means, ultimately becomes the super-villain Doomsday.
  • Raya is a character unique to the television series and does not have a mainstream DC Comics counterpart. Although Raya seemingly dies in this episode, she survives the Phantom Zone attack and appears again in "Reunion".
  • When Clark breaks free of the Phantom Zone, five other "Zoners" can clearly be seen escaping as well; one of which reappears briefly at the very end of the episode.


  • In the final scene with Martha Kent, her head wound is briefly seen on the left side of her head whereas it should be on the right. This is actually a reverse angle shot that managed to slip past the editors.
  • Jimmy Olsen gives Clark Kent the nickname C.K. in this episode. This is a nod to the 1994-97 television series Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman where Jimmy Olsen often referred to Clark by the initials C.K.
  • Future episodes will refer to the events from this episode as "Black Thursday". [1]

See Also


Character Actor
Clark KentTom Welling
Lana LangKristin Kreuk
Chloe SullivanAllison Mack
Lex Luthor/ZodMichael Rosenbaum
Lionel LuthorJohn Glover
Lois LaneErica Durance
Martha KentAnnette O'Toole
Jimmy OlsenAaron Ashmore
Jor-ElTerence Stamp
RayaPascale Hutton
Nam-EkLeonard Roberts

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