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"Delete" is the eleventh episode in the third season of Smallville, and fifty-fifth episode overall. It aired on January 28, 2004.


Clark and Lana each make an attempt on Chloe's life after receiving mysterious e-mail messages. Lex helps uncover the source of these emails and Lana rents the apartment above the Talon to Adam.


→ see also Category:Screencaps from episode 3x11

Chloe is packing up her desk at the Daily Planet and saying goodbye to her editor, Max Taylor. He remarks that she must have enemies in high places to get blacklisted while still in high school. She gives him a couple of stories that she was working on and asks him to look them over. It is impossible for him to publish anything she has written so Chloe suggests a pseudonym: her cousin's name, Lois Lane.

Molly Griggs seeks revenge on Chloe Sullivan.

Lex is working late at LuthorCorp and goes looking for the on-call tech guy. He finds Molly Griggs. He explains his problem and she gives him a disc which should scan for the viruses. After he leaves, Molly finishes removing the hard drive from Chloe's old computer. Chloe arrives at the Torch office and Pete tells her that someone came by and confiscated all the donated computers. She exits the school late at night and is run down by a familiar Dodge pickup. She has to dive under the pickup to avoid harm and is shocked when Clark climbs out of the truck. Clark looks equally surprised to see the wrecked truck and Chloe on the ground.

At the hospital, Sheriff Adams declares Clark to be stone sober and questions the two teens about the incident. Clark can't remember leaving the library. Chloe tells the sheriff it looked like Clark lost control of the truck. The sheriff dismisses Clark and he runs into Lana, who introduces him to Adam Knight, who just finished another session of physical therapy.

The next day, Lex tries to return Molly's disc and learns that no one named Molly works in the tech department and that all hard drives from the computers she was working on were wiped out.

At the Talon, Lana makes Adam a complicated cup of coffee, and Adam remarks on how uncomfortable she seemed around Clark last night. Lana explains that they have a lot of history. She knows that Clark still cares for her, and she can't control that, but he doesn't know what he wants.

Clark is examining the pickup when Chloe arrives at the Kent Farm. She informs him that there was no tampering done to the truck. She asked the mechanic. She starts to cry and says she can only apologize for investigating him so many times. Clark realizes that Chloe thinks he tried to run her over on purpose. He admits that he still isn't over her betrayal, and Chloe reminds him of his own recent bad judgments, but then they switch gears, and she asks him if he remembers anything after the library and he says the last thing he remembers is working on his laptop. Chloe examines the computer and learns that he downloaded an email from someone named "'Brainwave'" just before the accident. It is revealed that "'Brainwave'" is Molly Griggs' screen name as she prepares to send an email message to Lana Lang. Lana finishes showing Adam around the school when she receives an email message on a handheld device that Lex gave her. The message consists of flashing lights rather than words. Lana's eyes glow.

A hypnotized Lana tries to kill Chloe.

And after receiving the message, Lana immediately seeks out Chloe and bashes her head against the wall and throws her down the stairs. Lana follows her down the stairs and coolly states that she is trying to kill her. Lana kicks her in the chest and hits her across the face before Chloe starts to fight back and they fight violently and intensely down the stairs. Chloe rams Lana into a firehose case, and the latter grabs an ax. She chases Chloe down the hall, through the locker room, and into the shower. She knocks Chloe down and is about to bring the ax to her head when Adam intervenes with some impressive martial arts of his own. Lana finally stops trying to kill Chloe when Chloe trips her and she hits her head on the floor and asks what happened.

Adam helps Clark and Chloe figure out the murderous emails.

Later, at the Talon, Clark, Lana, Chloe, and Adam try to piece together why and how someone would want to kill Chloe. They realize that they both got suspicious e-mails just before the attacks. Clark guesses they were hypnotized. Adam helps them track down the IP address of the sender and they realize the messages came from the computers taken from the Torch office. Clark wonders how Adam knows so much about martial arts, computers, and the human brain.

He goes to Metropolis to ask Lex if Lionel is behind it. Lex realizes that the mysterious Molly probably was responsible. Lawrence Garner visits Molly in her loft apartment. He tells her that Max Taylor is questioning him about Chloe's scathing article on his dubious research.

Clark asks Lex if Lionel is responsible.

Lana finds Adam preparing to leave the hospital. He mentions that he would rather stay in Smallville instead of return to Metropolis. He wants to get to know her better, but she questions his motives. He doesn't want to clean up the mess of her previous relationship, and he asks her to leave. Later, they have a real discussion about where their friendship is headed and she persuades him to stay. She offers to renovate the apartment above the Talon and rent it to him.

Lana offers to rent Adam the Talon apartment.

Chloe finds Clark at the Torch office. He tells her what he learned from Lex. She recognizes Molly Griggs' photo and says that Molly is a super-smart engineering prodigy who was being treated at the Summerholt Institute after a psychotic break. Chloe interviewed her for a story she was writing about Lawrence Garner, so they call Max Taylor to warn him. Unfortunately, Molly has already gotten to his secretary, who kills Max during their phone conversation.

Clark takes Chloe to the Luthor mansion for protection and she tells Lex what she knows about Lawrence Garner. Clark leaves to talk with Garner and Lex leaves to talk with the techs he put in charge of tracking Molly. When Clark arrives at the Institute, he confronts Garner with everything he knows, and Garner has security escort him out. Clark uses his super hearing to hear Garner make a call to Molly and overhears Garner give the name of the apartment building and number to the operator. When Clark arrives, he finds Lex is already there. Molly explains that she is defending Dr. Garner out of loyalty. He doesn't have the power to control her. She developed the program herself. Lex discovers that Molly sent another email, and Clark is horrified to realize it was to his mother. Just then, Chloe arrives at the Kent farm, in response to Martha's phone call. Martha comes at her with a sickle while Jonathan chains her to a post by her neck.

Clark and Chloe discuss their tenuous friendship.

Chloe knocks Martha unconscious with a kick to the head. Clark arrives and pulls Jonathan off Chloe, but when he tries to help Chloe up, Jonathan comes at Clark with a meteor rock. He punches him several times before Chloe knocks out Jonathan by releasing several bales of hay stored on the upper level of the barn. They snap out of their trances.

The next day, Clark visits Chloe at the Torch and finds that Lex gave back the computers. She guesses he felt guilty about firing her dad. Chloe confesses that she feels like maybe she deserved what Molly did to her as penance for what she did to Clark. Clark assures her that he is partly to blame for pushing her away. He admits that Chloe found him at his weakest moment in Metropolis and she gave him a second chance, so he owes her the same. They agree that while they can't forget what has happened, Chloe will stop trying to add Clark up and take him as he is, and their friendship is renewed.

Lex approaches Dr. Garner and warns him against any further attempts on Chloe's life. He admits to having stashed Molly away somewhere safe. Then he blackmails him with Chloe's article. He threatens to have it published unless Dr. Garner helps him recover his seven weeks of missing memories.



Guest Starring


  • Jim Thorburn as Max Taylor
  • Suzanne Ristic as Maureen
  • Chris Gauthier as LuthorCorp Technician
  • Cornell Turner as Security Guard

Featured Music

  • "Try" - Nelly Furtado
  • "So Damn Lucky" - Dave Matthews
  • "The Reason" - Hoobastank


  • To delete means to erase something out of existence.
  • The title refers to Molly Griggs's mind control program that temporarily erased one's memory, only to fill it with a code to kill someone of her choosing.
  • It may also refer to Molly's wish to eliminate Chloe.


  • Antagonist: Molly Griggs and Lawrence Garner
  • Clark uses the following abilities in this episode: super strength, super speed, and super hearing.
  • Lionel Luthor does not appear in this episode.
  • It is very unusual for Chloe, a student columnist, to have her own desk at a big-city newspaper. However, as Max puts it, Lionel does have a large influence.
  • A picture of the Smallville High mascot wearing a Superman-like costume can be seen for a short moment on the Torch's computers.
  • It is odd that the deadly e-mails from Molly could only be opened once; if it works twice, Clark would have killed Chloe there and then when they are investigating in the barn.
  • Jonathan Kent has a non-speaking role in this episode.

In Other Media

  • In the comics, Brainwave (Molly's computer handle) is a longtime villain and opponent of the Justice Society of America. He can control minds, generate illusions, and fire brain blasts. His son was later a founding member, of the JSA legacy team, known as Infinity, Inc.
  • Adam walks through the halls of Smallville High and says the classic line "It's a bird..." This is a catchphrase from the immensely popular Superman radio program.


Evangeline Lilly

  • Martha's e-mail address is "CNH320" was the license plate number of the General Lee, the car driven by John Schneider's character in his 1970s show The Dukes of Hazzard.
  • Clark's e-mail address is
  • Evangeline Lilly makes her fifth and final appearance as an extra on Smallville. She had previously appeared in Kinetic, Visage, Rosetta, and Accelerate.


  • This is the first mention of Lois Lane, who is established as Chloe's cousin. Chloe mentions another cousin in Obscura, but this cousin may be older than Lois because she was in college already.
  • Chloe's computer was stolen in Magnetic by the retired Officer Mason. Mason was helping Lex investigate the death of Lachlan Luthor and he appears to have been killed for whatever was on Chloe's computer.
  • As pointed out by Clark, Dr. Garner was also the doctor experimenting on psychic child Ryan James in the episode Ryan.
  • This is the first mention of Level 33.1, Lex's secret lab for super powered meteor freaks. Lex says that Molly is "in the care of people who will help her".
  • This is the first time that the offices of the Daily Planet are seen in the show.
  • Adam Knight was last seen in Asylum.
  • This episode marked the introduction of the Talon Apartment.



  • Clark compares Lawrence Garner to Mengele, a Nazi physician who performed human experiments of dubious scientific value.


Please add locations here.


Molly: You'd rather have a PlayStation-addicted dork wearing a Star Wars T-shirt?

Adam: It was interesting meeting Clark.
Lana: We're just friends.
Adam: Just friends. Well, for friends, you're very uncomfortable around each other.

Clark: You're not the same person you used to be.
Chloe: Kind of like if I moved to Metropolis and became a motorcycle-riding party animal and told you to get out of my life. Kind of like that, right?

Chloe: Lana, what are you doing?
Lana: Killing Chloe Sullivan.

Chloe: So we can rule out paranoia. Someone is officially trying to kill me.

Lex: You know, contrary to common perception, my father isn't behind every nefarious activity in Smallville.

Lex: I'm starting to get a complex. It seems all the women I find even remotely appealing turn out to be psychopaths.
Molly: Birds of a feather.

Clark: No, Chloe, he caught you at a weak moment, and we all have them. You found me at mine in Metropolis. You didn't turn your back on me. You gave me a second chance, and I at least owe you the same.
Chloe: I'd like that. So, what do we do now? We can't just forget about everything that's happened.
Clark: Well, you have to understand there are some things about me that'll never add up.
Chloe: I know that.
Clark: You're willing to stop digging?
Chloe: Yeah. I mean I figure you'll just tell me when you think it's right.

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