Kara and Jimmy attend a OneRepublic concert and one of the roadies turns out to be former Smallville resident Pete Ross. Pete unwittingly chews some kryptonite-laced gum and develops stretching powers. Clark and Chloe are thrilled to meet up with their old friend but warn him against using his powers in public. However, Lex discovers Pete's powers and blackmails him into helping break into Lionel's safe by threatening to reveal Chloe is a meteor freak.
→ see also Category:Screencaps from episode 7x13
Jimmy Olsen and Kara Kent are attending a concert in the Stride Gum Factory for the band OneRepublic. Pete Ross is backstage, also watching, and chewing a piece of gum that glows green. Suddenly, a piece of scaffolding comes loose and falls directly in Kara's path. Pete goes to grab her out of the way, but before he can move, his arms stretch several feet and pull Kara to safety. She looks shocked but grateful. Jimmy has snapped a photograph of Pete saving Kara.
Clark finds Lana and Lionel Luthor discussing Kara's amnesia. He says he thinks it's time to tell her, but Lana and Lionel disagree because she has been spending too much time with Lex. They are interrupted by a knock on the door. It is Pete, who is shocked to see Lionel casually conversing with them. Clark just mumbles that it's a long story.
Lex is contemplating a monogram that he notices matches a symbol in his family crest. He is interrupted by Kara. She admits that she cannot find anything about her past on the farm and questions why she has no medical or dental records. Lex tells her that the design on her bracelet is a symbol that matches others around town. He believes that whatever Clark is hiding has to do with the symbols.
Clark and Pete are talking about the new developments around town: specifically, how many people now know Clark's secret, and how Clark is now on good terms with Lionel, despite all that he has done in the past. Pete admits that he gets by, even though he had to leave his life behind because of Clark's secret. Pete shows Clark his new stretching power and Clark is worried that the kryptonite will harm him. He says it has already affected his thinking. Pete counters that he doesn't intend to hide his powers because he finally felt what it was like to be a hero. He tells Clark that he better not try to stop him or he will reveal Clark's secret, and stalks away angrily.
Chloe is at work complaining to the IT department that she's been locked out of her files. Jimmy shows her the photograph of Pete grabbing Kara and she recognizes him. She tells him that she knows Pete and Jimmy says that Pete wants to be interviewed. He thinks Pete will change stereotypes of meteor freaks and an interview could be beneficial. Chloe decides to help Jimmy with the story and uploads the photograph while she leaves Clark a message. However, she is unable to access the file and learns that Lex is monitoring her files. He is viewing the photograph when she storms in angrily. They argue about whether Lex has the right to copy her computer files and he tells her that she can quit if she doesn't like the way he runs the paper.
Clark meets Jimmy at the gum factory. Clark also tells him that the interview isn't a good idea, but Jimmy thinks that Pete will help other metahumans feel less afraid. He leaves Clark alone in the factory. Clark turns to go but is suddenly weakened. He pushes away a shipment of gum and sees a green liquid leaking into the gum.
Pete goes to visit Chloe at the Daily Planet and she tells him that Lex is monitoring and locking her out of her files. Pete asks if she can just hack back into them,
but she tells him that nothing but a massive virus will give her access. Pete shows her his stretching power and she tells him that he better not show his powers to Lex. Pete disagrees and says he thinks real heroes don't hide or ask others to lie for them.
Kara is looking through Clark's trunk in the loft when Lana catches her. She chastises her for going through Clark's things. Kara asks her why her bracelet has the symbols on them and shows her a picture of Lana's tattoo that she suddenly doesn't have anymore. She tells Lana she got the photos from Lex. Lana warns that Lex is very enticing, but she'll realize that everything he says is a lie. Kara doesn't believe her and demands the truth. When Lana doesn't answer, Kara declares that she'll continue to investigate and leaves.
Jimmy sees Pete in Lex's office at the Daily Planet. Pete is uploading a virus onto Lex's computer, but Lex catches him. Jimmy watches as they talk. Lex remarks that Pete is probably saving Chloe, alluding to Pete's old crush on her. Pete thinks Lex is still evil, but Lex offers him a job: he tells him to recover Kara's bracelet from Lionel's safe. Pete says that Chloe wouldn't want him to steal to save her job, but Lex tells him that if he doesn't, he will reveal that Chloe is meteor-infected.
Clark arrives and explains that Pete's power is the result of kryptonite-laced chewing gum and that he thinks it is affecting his personality. In the basement office, everyone's computers have been infected and fried by a virus. Jimmy arrives and tells them that he heard Lex and Pete's conversation, and that Pete is stealing something from Lionel Luthor.
Pete sneaks into Lionel's office and uses his ability to open Lionel's safe. He finds Kara's bracelet and realizes that it has a Kryptonian symbol engraved on it, but Clark finds him. Clark tries to reason with him but Pete points out that Lionel hadn't told Clark he had the bracelet either. Pete is convinced that the Luthors need to be dealt with. He incapacitates Clark with a meteor rock and leaves. He meets Lex at the gum factory and grabs him by the neck. He chokes Lex until one of Lex's thugs knocks him away. The thug beats him up but Pete refuses to tell him where the bracelet is.
Lionel finds Clark on the floor and removes the kryptonite, but Clark speeds away to save Pete. Lex continues to torture Pete until a speeding blur knocks both Lex and the thug out. Clark rescues Pete, who sheepishly tells him thank you.
The next day, Pete (with his arm in a sling) admits that he unfairly blamed Clark for how his life turned out, mostly because he was jealous. He apologizes and says it's time for him to make a change and find another way to save the world. Pete goes to tell Chloe goodbye. She tells him that she appreciates how he risked his life to protect her. He admits that Lex told him that she has a power, but she doesn't have to tell him what it is. He turns to go and sees Jimmy. Pete tells Jimmy that he has decided not to be interviewed after all and exits. Jimmy wonders if Chloe and Pete were ever more than friends. Chloe asks how things are going with Kara, and Jimmy admits that it is hard with her amnesia. Jimmy asks Chloe if she wants to have a cup of coffee, hinting that he wants to rekindle their relationship. Chloe agrees.
Clark hides Kara's bracelet underneath the floorboards of the barn.
Kara gets very close to Lex and trusts him more and more.
Lex is contemplating the family crest again when one of his assistants enters. She shows him a constellation pattern and reports that the stars haven't aligned like this since the day of the first meteor shower. They are interrupted by Kara. The assistant leaves and Kara tells Lex that she doesn't trust Clark and Lana anymore and asks if she can stay at the mansion with him.
- Tom Welling as Clark Kent
- Michael Rosenbaum as Lex Luthor
- Kristin Kreuk as Lana Lang
- Allison Mack as Chloe Sullivan
- Erica Durance as Lois Lane (credit only)
- Aaron Ashmore as Jimmy Olsen
- Laura Vandervoort as Kara Kent
- John Glover as Lionel Luthor
Special Guest Star
- "Stop and Stare" - OneRepublic (At the concert in the beginning of the episode in the gum factory )
- "Mercy" - OneRepublic (Performed When Pete goes to confront Lex)
- "Apologize" by OneRepublic (When Clark hides Kara's bracelet, in the barns floorboards)
- Hero is defined as, "A real or mythical person of great bravery who carries out extraordinary deeds." A secondary definition is, "A role model".
- The title is a reference to Pete and his interpretation of being a hero.
- Antagonist: Lex Luthor
- Lois Lane does not appear in this episode.
- Kara's bracelet has the sign of the House of El (the Superman insignia) engraved on it.
- The logo of the Stride gum resembles the Superman 'S' logo.
- Lex notes that the first meteor shower was on October 7, 1989. However, Chloe Sullivan says in the Chloe Chronicles that it was on October 16, which corresponds to the airdate of the Pilot episode.
- When discussing with Clark how Kryptonite affects someone's personality, Chloe notes herself as an exception, but for some reason, there's no acknowledgement of other Kryptonite empowered humans who maintain their sanity such as
- Lana is driving a blue Toyota Tundra identical to the red one Clark drove last year.
- During the scene at the start, when One Republic are playing, the drum beat is the opposite to what the drummer is playing. He is playing the snare when the song is a kick etc.
- Near the end of the episode, in the Daily Planet scene, Chloe tells Pete not to let another light-year pass by before she sees him again. This is an incorrect usage of the phrase light-year, as it is a measure of distance and not time.
- Near the end of the episode, in the Daily Planet scene with Jimmy, Chloe and Pete, Pete takes out a piece of Stride gum and begins to chew. Chloe is shocked so Pete says, "Relax. It's kryptonite free." Jimmy then laughs. This makes no sense because Jimmy doesn't know Clark's secret and doesn't know to call the meteor rocks 'kryptonite'.
In Other Media
- In Superman's Pal, Jimmy Olsen #37 (June 1959), Jimmy drinks a serum which turns him into Elastic Lad. In this episode, Jimmy dubs Pete "Elastic Man".
- Pete's powers are very similar to DC Comics superhero called Plastic Man and Ralph Dibny (Elongated Man) and Marvel Comics superhero Reed Richards (Mister Fantastic).
- This is the final episode of Smallville to feature Sam Jones III as Pete Ross.
- This episode contains extensive product placement for Stride chewing gum.
- After the Season Two finale Exodus, this is the second and final time that Lionel Luthor and Pete Ross share a scene.
- This is the first appearance of Pete Ross since he moved to Wichita in the Season Three episode Forsaken. Pete still has a crush on Chloe, and a deep distrust of the Luthors.
- Lex shows Kara photos of the Kryptonian symbols burned onto the barn door, which occurred in Season Two's Rosetta.
- Kara asks Lana about her tattoo, which was really a Mark of Transference which she had during Season Four when she got it in Crusade, then disappeared in Commencement. This marks the first time that it has actually been mentioned on screen since then.
- Chloe remarks that Pete "the Boss" Ross is back, his street racing nickname in Season Three's Velocity.
- Lex's assistant also appeared in Bizarro, Action, and Gemini.
- Jimmy was last seen in Gemini.
- Lex inspects a small Roman soldier figure. This is the same figure the good side of Lex (Alexander) was playing with in Lex's mind in Fracture. This is the first time that Lex has shown interest in his good side.
- This episode marks the 69th appearance of Clark's red jacket and blue shirt outfit, which he wears frequently throughout the series.
- Lex's assistant also appears in the later episodes Traveler, Veritas and Descent, where it is revealed that her name is Gina.
- Near the end of the episode, in the Daily Planet office, Chloe greets Pete with "Hey! Is this the 'Barry Bonds' Pete or the 'Hank Aaron' Pete?" These were both great baseball players whereas Pete's sport is basketball, but seems to be a reference to the allegation that Barry Bonds used steroids to enhance his abilities, while Hank Aaron did not.
- Chloe refers to Pete as the "Go-Go Gadget Arms", a reference to Inspector Gadget who can also stretch his arms, with the catchphrase "go-go gadget".
- In addition to the chewing gum itself, the concert in the opening scene is held in a Stride gum factory. Chloe expresses surprise that the gum factory has already been closed, saying "maybe next time they won't let the flavor last quite so long." This is a reference to Stride's ad campaign, where its gum factories are shut down because of the "Ridiculously Long Lasting Gum".
- Chloe refers to Lex as "Citizen Lex", a reference to the film Citizen Kane, which is about a man very similar to Lex.
- Lex: (to Pete) You know, we may have more in common than you think: we both have a friend who let us down and something tells me that you know what it's like to love a woman who's still infatuated with Clark Kent.
- Clark: If he ingests any more kryptonite... we both know what happens to people.
- Chloe: Present company on stand-by.
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