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"Leech" is the twelfth episode in the first season of Smallville, and twelfth episode overall. It aired on February 12, 2002.


Eric Summers suddenly receives the powers once wielded by Clark, and Clark is left without them. Lex Luthor turns the tables on Harry Hardwick. Lana Lang laments the impending sale of the Talon.


→ see also Category:Screencaps from episode 1x12


Eric Summers, after leeching Clark's powers.

The Smallville High School students are on a geology field trip looking for a specific list of rocks. Eric Summers, a shy, quiet boy, offers to help the pretty, blonde Holly find a meteor rock, but her boyfriend threatens to knock him into the next county. The geology teacher Mr. Summers (Eric's dad) breaks it up, then berates Eric for not finding more rocks. Eric wanders away morose. When he has all the students loaded up on the bus, Eric is missing. Clark Kent volunteers to go find him.

Clark finds Eric standing on the ledge of Smallville Dam listening to music and dropping rocks into the dam, just as the thunderstorm starts rolling in. Eric is holding his bag of rocks, which includes a meteor rock. A bolt of lightning strikes near Eric and he starts to fall off the Dam. Clark grabs his hand before he can fall, and at that moment, Clark is struck by lightning square in the chest. The electricity radiates down his arm to Eric, and a cloud of green smoke surrounds them. When Clark pulls Eric up, he reaches over to pat out some embers on Eric's coat and is surprised when he burns his hand on them.

The next morning, Jonathan asks Clark to help him get the truck out of the mud. Clark seems confused when he can't do it. He falls down hard and his nose starts to bleed. When he realizes his super speed is gone too, Martha gives him a ride to school.

When Eric Summers comes downstairs for breakfast, he realizes that he doesn't need eyeglasses anymore. His father gives him a hard time again for what happened at the dam. When he goes to backhand his son, Eric uses his super speed to grab his father's hand. Mr. Summers backs off, greatly surprised.

At school, Clark is sweating buckets after the kind of workout that never used to faze him. He asks Eric if he's feeling any different. Eric just says he feels great, and then when he's alone, repeatedly bench-presses six hundred pounds while smiling. After school, Whitney drops Lana off at the flower shop. He tells her that he has been having a hard time because he has to spend so much time helping out at his dad's store that he doesn't have time to train and his grades are slipping. He's worried about losing his football scholarship to Kansas State. They are both surprised to see the "For sale" sign in the window of the flower shop, which includes the Talon Theater. Lana is particularly upset with her Aunt Nell for not consulting her about it.

Roger Nixon shows up at the Luthor Mansion with his report on the car crash. He reports that all evidence suggests that Lex actually hit Clark on the bridge. He is eager to break the story, but Lex warns him no one else is ever to learn of these findings.


Clark and Pete play pick-up basketball with Whitney.

Clark struggles through his chores on the farm, which he says take two hours instead of five minutes. He expresses profound respect for his father's ability to do this every day. He is still out after dark mending a fence when Lex arrives. Lex is surprised and disappointed to see that Clark is struggling. He accuses Clark of not telling him the whole story about the day of the crash. Clark gets angry at Lex's insinuations that Clark is hiding secrets about himself. Clark dares Lex to hit him with a hammer to see if it hurts.

As Chloe and Pete are walking along Main Street, a man grabs Chloe's laptop and runs off. Eric chases after the thief, who thrusts at him with a knife that shatters against Eric's hand. Finally, Eric grabs the thief and throws him 30 feet to cheering crowds. Chloe writes a story about Eric in the Smallville Ledger, calling him a "Super Boy." Reading the story, the Kents realize that Eric must have taken Clark's powers somehow, and Jonathan guesses he will probably not get them back. Clark has mixed feelings. He thinks it must have been a waste of time keeping his abilities a secret since everyone seems to be celebrating Eric's abilities. Martha reminds him that doesn’t have to hide any more. She advises him to try to have some fun.

Screenshot (2)

At school, Clark shows disdain for Eric's boasting about his abilities, but he cheers up when Whitney and Brent invite him and Pete to a pick-up basketball game and he can actually accept. He and Pete lose badly, but Clark is smiling from ear to ear.

In Metropolis, Lex is annoyed at Sir Harry Hardwick for keeping him waiting. He threatens to reconsider the deal to help Harry take over LuthorCorp with his shares. Harry announces that the deal is off, and that he has another plan to take over LuthorCorp, having just bought Cadmus Labs. With the profits from the patents, he can afford to buy LuthorCorp outright.

After school, Clark meets Lana at the Talon theater. She explains that she is sad because her Aunt Nell has decided to sell the flower shop and the theater. It has sentimental value for Lana since her parents met there. He asks her for her English notes, since he slept through class, and she remarks that he seems more relaxed these days.


Eric terrorizes his classmates.

When Eric gets home, he's excited about being in the paper and he expects his parents to be proud of his good deed. However, his father informs him that he is taking him to see Dr. Litvack for some tests and afterwards a professor in Metropolis to study him. Eric gets angry and speeds away. He arrives at school, where he boldly asks Holly on a date. Her boyfriend threatens to leave her alone. So Eric terrorizes Holly's boyfriend, threatening to crush him with a truck. When Clark tries to stop him, Eric throws him several feet. Clark lands on the top of the car, unconscious. Horrified, Holly tells Eric to get away, and calls him a freak.

As Clark has his ribs bandaged, he tells his parents he feels responsible. Lex arrives to make sure Clark is all right. Clark is irritable and defensive, so Lex backs off and apologizes.

Eric arrives home asking his parents for help. He knows he made a mistake terrorizing his schoolmates. His parents know what happened, but they are afraid of him and have called the sheriff. Eric is devastated.

Jonathan reports that Eric's parents are afraid of Eric. Clark expresses sympathy for Eric and asks his father if he was ever afraid of him. Jonathan tells him that he put a few holes in the walls, but he was a good kid, so he was never afraid. Clark reasons that if Eric has his abilities, he might have his weakness, too.

Back in Metropolis, Lex has arrived at the offices of Harry Hardwick, who has realized that Cadmus Labs is worthless. Lex reveals that he planted the misinformation about Cadmus Labs on his computer knowing that Victoria would steal it. Lex announces that he and his father will be making an offer on Harry's company in the morning.

Clark asks Lana if he can borrow her meteor rock necklace, and goes to Eric's house with it.


Clark takes his powers back from Eric.

When Clark arrives at Eric's house, he finds the sheriff's car sticking out of the roof. Mr. Summers tells Clark that Eric went to "get rid of" his powers and that there was "only one place he could do that". Clark finds Eric at the dam again. He jumps and Clark meets him at the bottom, unharmed. Clark tries to tell him that he can adjust to his abilities, but Eric is still in a rage. Clark attacks Eric with the necklace at the same time Eric attacks Clark with a live power line. The combination of high voltage and meteor rock transfers Clark's super powers back to him. A cut on his forehead heals instantly and the necklace hurts his hand. Clark puts the necklace back in the box. Then, Eric is taken away in an ambulance.

Later, Lionel calls to congratulate Lex for taking over Hardwick's company. After they hang up, Nixon arrives. Lex tells him that he was wrong about Clark and that the Kents are now off limits. Nixon delivers a photograph of Lionel in an intimate position with Victoria. Lex is saddened to realize that it was Lionel who used Victoria to set him up.

Clark returns Lana's necklace in the lead box he received from Lex. He says that it will protect her memories without holding her back.



Guest Starring[]




Featured Music[]

Song Artist/Band Scene
"Fade" Staind Played at the beginning, when Eric and Clark are hit by lightning at the top of the dam.
"Elevation" (remix) U2 Played when a thief tries to steal Chloe's purse and Eric stops him and throws him across the street.
"Snapperhead" Mark Cherrie Played when Chloe and Pete talk to Clark about Erics heroics and Chloe dubs him Superboy.
"Fat Lip" Sum 41 Played when Clark plays his first basketball game as a normal guy with Pete, Whitney and Brent.
"Amplify My Soul" Keith Kohn Played When Victoria and her father meet with Lex in Metropolis.
"Bonecracker" Shocore Played in the school parking lot, when Eric asks out Holly throws and attacks Brent before throwing Clark on top of a car.
"Inflatable" Bush Played at the end, when Clark gives Lana back her necklace at the Talon.


  • A leech is a segmented worm that is known for its bloodsucking ability.
  • The title refers to Eric Summers "leeching" Clark's powers.


  • Antagonist: Eric Summers
  • Clark uses the following abilities in this episode: super strength, super speed, invulnerability and X-ray vision. After he leeches Clark's abilities, Eric Summers uses super strength, super speed, invulnerability, super stamina, and healing factor.
  • Chloe receives her first byline in the Smallville Ledger for the story about Eric.
  • First appearance of Lana's Kryptonite Necklace since the episode X-Ray.
  • Clark gives Lana the lead box so she can store her necklace. Lana asks if this is his way of requesting her to stop wearing her necklace, and she must have agreed, because this is the last episode in which she regularly wears it.
  • This is the first episode where we see Clark actually bleed; he gets a nosebleed after trying and failing to get Jonathan's truck out of the mud and receives a cut on the side of his forehead after being thrown onto a car by Eric. Though this was all due to the fact Clark was powerless.

In Other Media[]

  • The transfer of powers has appeared in Lois & Clark on three separate occasions. Two cases involved electricity, with the power transfer being incomplete (that is, Superman retained his powers), and, as shown in the second episode, temporary. The third case involved a laser generated through Red Kryptonite, with the power transfer being complete and presumably permanent. In the comics, no such ability was present.
  • The episode begins with a geology field trip. In the comics, Pete Ross was a geologist as an adult, before the John Byrne reboot.


  • Eric Summers was portrayed by Shawn Ashmore. Shawn's identical twin brother Aaron was chosen to play Jimmy Olsen.
  • John Glover provides an uncredited voice and picture cameo at the end of this episode.


  • Clark's powers are transferred this way again in Season 7's Wrath when Lana acquires them. In that instance the transfer is incomplete. As a result, Clark still has his powers at the same time she does.
  • Eric Summers also appears in the Season Three episode Asylum.




Lex: I don't think you're being completely honest, and I think I know why.
Clark: All right, then you tell me what happened.
Lex: I think I hit you at 60 miles an hour. Then, you ripped open my roof, pulled me out and saved my life. You're the closest I've had to a real friend my whole life. You don't have to hide anything from me.
Clark: You think I'm hiding something from you? You know what? Here, take this hammer. Hit me anywhere.
Lex: I'm not gonna hit you, Clark.
Clark: Come on! If I get hit by a car, you can't hurt me.
Lex: Clark, I just want the truth.
Clark: The truth is, I'm just a guy who tried to do the right thing, isn't that enough?

Pete: What's wrong?
Clark: My leg, it hurts.
Pete: It's a cramp. Walk it off. You're falling apart today, Clark.

Clark: Hey, dad?
Jonathan: Yeah?
Clark: How do you find the strength to do this everyday?
Jonathan: Years of practice.

Clark: How much longer is it going to hurt like this?
Doctor: Oh, you'll be fine in a couple weeks.
Clark: A couple weeks?

Martha: Clark, you're our son, whether you can bench press the tractor or not.

Chloe: I'm sorry, but I find geology even more pointless than algebra. I mean, I could just order these rocks online and have them delivered vacuum-sealed.

Lex: Clark, I just heard.
Clark: So, did you come by to make sure I was hurt?
Lex: I wanted to make sure you were all right.
Clark: Yeah, never better. Maybe we can go out in the parking lot and you can hit me with your car.

Victoria: It was just business.
Lex: You call sleeping with me business? I'd hate to think what that makes you.

Eric: Come on, Clark. If you had the power to do whatever you want, what would you do?
Clark: I'd stop people like you.

Lionel: (after he takes credit for Lex's takeover) That's what happens when you trust your family, Lex. I'm proud of you.
Lex: (sarcastically) Thanks, Dad. That means a lot coming from you.

Clark: Maybe being normal won't be so bad, I mean it works for you and mom.
Martha: (sarcastically) Oh thanks.

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ComicsThe Comic · Season 11 · Miniseries