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For the eponymous character, Bette Sans Souci.

"Plastique" is the second episode in the eighth season of Smallville, and the one hundred-fifty-fourth episode overall. It aired on September 25, 2008.


It's Clark's first day at the Daily Planet with Lois, and the pair are immediately thrown together on a story when a bus explodes outside the office. Clark rescues Bette, a young girl who bonds with Chloe over their shared meteor abilities, but Bette is hiding a big secret. Paramedic Davis Bloome arrives in Metropolis and is drawn to Chloe.


→ see also Category:Screencaps from episode 8x02


Lois decides to give Clark fashion tips.

When Clark shows up for his first day at the Daily Planet dressed in a plaid shirt, Lois gets him to change into a borrowed dress shirt inside a phone booth in the office. As he emerges from the booth, they hear an explosion from outside and are thrown into each other's arms. Clark quickly runs outside to investigate the noise.

Clark arrives on the main street, where a bus has exploded. He uses the cover of smoke to tear open the roof of the bus to allow the people inside to escape. As he is helping them out of the wreckage, he notices a red-haired woman still inside and carries her to safety.


Clark saves the people from the bus, including Tess.

Meanwhile, Chloe notices a girl stumbling around, coughing due to smoke inhalation. She shouts out for an EMT to help, and through the thick smoke emerges Davis Bloome. He runs over to Chloe and begins to examine the girl. He gives her first aid and thanks Chloe for her help. Clark asks another EMT if the red-haired woman is okay, only to hear that she's been taken somewhere. Clark spots Chloe and comes over for a talk. He suggests that she should come back to the Daily Planet, now that Lex is no longer in charge. However, she declines and begins to tell Clark about the other changes in her life, making certain her "engagement ring" is in view. However, Clark suddenly gets a text from Lois wanting to know where he went.

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Clark gets helpful reporting tips from Lois.

Back at the office, Clark comes in and finds Lois chasing down a story. He tells her about the police theory that the bomb misfired but was too busy helping people to get a source. An aide comes to get Clark and escort him to the new boss, who asked specifically to meet with him.

Upon entering what used to be Lex's office, he sees that the Daily Planet's new owner is Tess Mercer, the red-haired woman he saved from the bus. Tess tells Clark that Lex has told her all about him in the past, especially his "thing for saving people." She asks for suggestions on where to find Lex, but he tells her he doesn't know what happened to him. Tess concludes by thanking Clark for saving her life, but as he leaves, he tells her that he'd hate to see her life get consumed by the job the same way Lex's was. Tess' assistant comes in and asks if she should have someone keep an eye on Clark. Tess tells her she's going to watch him personally, because she believes he's hiding something.

Chloe brings food for Bette in the hospital waiting room. Bette explains that she's between homes right now with no parents. As Chloe goes to get a soda for her, Davis shows up and recognizes Chloe. When he hears that Chloe plans to drop Bette off at a street shelter, he talks to Bette and offers to get her into a home where he knows somebody. Chloe volunteers her house for the night, under the condition that Bette will consider Davis' offer, and she agrees as long as she's not forced into anything.

ClarkHearing - Plastique

Using super-hearing, Clark learns that there was no bomb on the bus.

As Lois and Clark go to the bomb site, Lois wonders about Tess talking to Clark. She denies being jealous of his meeting with the new owner, and Clark reassures Lois that Tess was just welcoming him to the Daily Planet. Lois attempts to charm an officer into gaining access to the bomb site, with no luck. Clark uses his super hearing and determines from the bomb unit that there wasn't actually a bomb on the bus. Lois is skeptical, but Clark wants to talk to Bette. Lois goes to talk to the other bus passengers and emergency personnel, while Clark heads for Chloe's apartment.


Bette uses her powers to kill Tommy.

Bette is preparing lunch when Clark arrives (now back in his own, plaid red shirt) and he mentions to Chloe his suspicion that someone with a meteor power was responsible for the explosion. Bette overhears them and says she knows another street kid named Tommy. Bette says she can take Clark to find him and knows where he hangs out.

They drive back to Metropolis and find Tommy hanging around a skate park. Despite telling Bette to stay in the truck, Bette comes out to talk to him anyway, trying to reassure him that everything's okay. Tommy doesn't stay, instead he runs down a back alley and Clark and Bette follow. Clark tells him he only wants to talk, but Tommy just yells at them to go away. Behind Clark, Bette's eyes flair with fire in the irises, exploding flammable barrels near Tommy, killing him. Bette pretends that Tommy blew himself up, but as soon as Clark leaves, she grins cynically.

Back at the Daily Planet, Clark tells Lois what happened and figures that Tommy's powers ran out of control, and ultimately killed him. Lois pulls out a recorder, showing she was taping their entire conversation. Clark gets frustrated, but Lois says she'll call him an anonymous source. However, she tells Clark she won't go ahead with the story unless she has scientific evidence. She goes off to the hospital to get a coroner's report, after telling Clark he's been assigned to do Tommy's obituary, which is a step up from everyone who starts and are stuck writing ads.


Davis meets Clark, thinking he's Chloe's fiancé.

Chloe is at the Isis Foundation trying to replace a light bulb when Davis comes over with Bette's application for the home. Davis helps her with the light bulb and when they get fairly close, Chloe becomes a bit flustered and tells him she's engaged. Davis backs off and says he hasn't heard anything about Isis but knows about "meteor types" and figures they can use the help. He suggests that Chloe help the meteor people, and Chloe reveals she has researched his past, discovering that he was a foster child and moved around to numerous homes. Davis advises her to hold on to real love, if she has indeed found it.

At the Luthor Mansion, Tess is reading a file on Bette when an aide comes in to report they're still unsure of the girl's whereabouts. The aide notes that Tess tried to approach Bette on the bus and things didn't go well, and that Lex would have terminated the girl immediately. Tess reminds him that she's in charge now, and things are going to be different. She orders the aide to bring Bette to her.


Clark arrives just in time to save Chloe from Bette.

Lois sneaks into the coroner's room at the hospital, with a reluctant Clark outside holding flowers. Davis sees him and they introduce themselves to each other. Davis mistakenly assumes that Clark is Chloe's fiancé. When he realizes that's not the case, he asks Clark not to give away that he told Chloe's secret.

At Chloe's apartment, Bette is preparing to leave despite Chloe's objections. When Chloe doesn't stop, Bette makes an object explode using the explosive force from her eyes, and Chloe realizes that Bette has that power and not Tommy.

At the hospital, Lois gets the file which reveals that there was no meteor rock in Tommy's body. His rap sheet shows that Tommy was a major criminal, but never used explosives. They deduce that Bette was responsible, and when Lois turns to press the elevator call button, Clark super-speeds to Smallville.


Tess makes Bette an offer.

Meanwhile, Bette explains to Chloe that she deliberately set off the explosions first to protect herself on the bus, and later to get revenge on Tommy when he betrayed her. Bette says she was locked up for three years by some corporation at Black Creek until a week ago when they were released, supposedly after tagging, but she had avoided being tagged. Bette told Tommy, who sold her out. Chloe says she was there too and that she also had meteor powers, but they shouldn't kill, no matter what. When Bette threatens to dispose of her, Chloe makes a run for it. Bette aims a blast at Chloe, who falls down the stairs. Clark arrives just in time to catch Chloe and deflect the explosive blast, which bounces back and stuns Bette. Clark convinces Bette that he will help her no matter what she's done, and insists she is not a monster. He offers her his hand and she takes it.

Bette is sent to Belle Reve, and Chloe and Clark are cleaning up the mess in her apartment when she notices her ring has fallen off. Clark has found it and gives it back to her and asks how long she's been engaged. She wonders if Jimmy told him, but Clark doesn't give up his source. He asks why she kept it from him, and she expresses her concern about the changes the engagement will force upon their friendship. He tells her that her happiness is one of the most important things in the world to him, and that she shouldn't worry about anything else.

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Lois thanks Clark for helping her land the story.

Tess and her team intercept the prisoner truck on its way to Belle Reve, and Tess talks to Bette about coming back to LuthorCorp. Tess claims that she is trying to help her, and that she was the one who shut down the Montana facility where she was previously held. She says that Bette is a hero, and that she can be part of a team of heroes Tess is putting together.

Lois has gotten a front-page headline about the bus explosion, and thanks Clark for his help. She gives him back a corrected version of his first article, Tommy's obituary. They talk about Chloe's engagement, and Clark reminds Lois that she should be happy for Chloe.


Davis suddenly wakes up in an alley.

When Chloe phones Davis, she gets his answering machine and leaves a message to thank him for helping her to decide to re-open the Isis Foundation. At that same time, Davis is lying unconscious in an alleyway, naked and trembling. As he slowly returns to his human self after mutating, he wakes up and screams.



Guest Starring[]





  • Plastique (or plastic explosives) is a specialised form of explosive material. Common forms of plastique include Semtex and C-4.
  • Bette Sans Souci is Smallville's version of DC Comics villain/hero Plastique whose name is also Bette Sans Souci


  • Antagonist: Bette Sans Souci
  • Clark’s Abilities: Super-Strength, Super-Speed, Super-Hearing, Invulnerability
  • Bette's full name is French, and it literally translates to mean "careless chard". The "careless" part is likely a reference to her personality.
  • Oliver Queen and Jimmy Olsen do not appear in this episode.
  • This is the first episode in which Lex Luthor is not seen in any way, shape, or form. Since this episode, Clark is the only member of the original main cast who appeared in every episode.
  • Although implied, it is never explicitly stated that Bette received her powers from a meteor infection.
  • Clark changes his clothes inside a phonebooth. In the comics and movies, Clark would change into his costume in a phonebooth.
  • This is Clark's first meeting with Tess Mercer and Davis Bloome.
  • This is the first on-screen indication that Lois has published a story in the Daily Planet. The headline is "Bomber Defused".[1]
  • Clark mentions that if Tommy had caused the explosion, the shrapnel would go away from him. In reality, the explosion would cause shrapnel to go in all directions as the barrels were destroyed. - Except Tommy wasn't believed to have blown up the barrels, but himself, which as the origin of the explosion, it would have blasted everything around him away as Clark states.  Bette's ability projects from her to an object within her line of sight, and therefore she blew up the barrels in front of him, which is how Clark was able to figure it out.
  • When talking to Bette about being at Black Creek, Chloe tells her that "I had a meteor power too. I could heal people." Her use of the past tense confirms that she now believes she has lost her healing power.
  • In a deleted scene, Tess stops by the barn to give Clark a tie.
  • This is the first episode since Arctic that Lois appears in where she isn't in any physical danger.
  • Lois calls Tommy "Livewire", which is also the name of a Superman villain, but with electrical powers. That character would later appear on the show. Lois also calls Tommy a "Human Bomb", which is the name of several DC Comics superheroes.
  • Clark says that the police believe the bomb on the bus may have misfired as there were no casualties, but we see and hear about many injured people. It seams the word "casualties" is being incorrectly used to mean deaths when in reality it can mean deaths on injuries.
  • While expressing doubt that Tommy was the one behind the bus explosion, Clark notes that there was no traces of meteor rock (Kryptonite) found in his system. However, by this point in the series, Clark had encountered a number of super-powered people, who did not get their powers from meteor infection: Chrissy Parker, Bart Allen, Mikhail Mxyzptlk, Arthur Curry, and Dinah Lance, along with several witches, people empowered by alien technology (ex. Jeremiah Holdsclaw and Lindsay Harrison), and super-powered aliens. Furthermore, the Season Six episode Justice (and the related 33.1 storyline) established people with super-powers as being a global thing (rather than something limited to one Kansas small town).

In Other Media[]

  • In the beginning of the episode, when Clark goes to the Daily Planet, Lois reacts on how Clark is dressed, and tells him to change. This might be a reference to Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, when Clark for the first time works at the Daily Planet. Also, later in an explosion, Clark saves a lot of people from a bus full of smoke, this might also be a reference to the same episode in Lois and Clark. In Lois and Clark, Clark saves a man from a smoking sewer entrance (thus getting the clothes dirty, which Lois reacts to).
  • In the comics, Plastique first appeared in 1982, while attempting to blow up the Herald-Express, a New York newspaper. She becomes a member of the Suicide Squad and later the Justice League offshoot team "Extreme Justice" before reverting to her life of crime some years later.
  • Bette Sans Souci is the 34th DC Comics character adapted into the series.



  • Tess and Clark's first interaction mirrors Lex and Clark's first interaction. In Pilot, Clark rescued Lex from his Porsche, which he had driven off a bridge, while in Plastique Clark rescued Tess from a bus, which had just exploded.
  • Clark, Davis, and Lois learn about Chloe's engagement, which happened in the previous episode, Odyssey.
  • Chloe's engagement ring is the plastic one Jimmy bought her from a bubble-gum machine in Arctic.
  • Colin was last seen in Blue.


  • Bette also appears in Injustice as a member of Tess' super-team, where her official alias of "Plastique" is revealed. She also returns in Season Ten's Shield.


  • Lois tells Clark that he looks like the "Brawny Lumberjack", a reference to the paper towel brand advertising mascot, who is almost always depicted wearing a red checkered shirt similar to Clark's. She also calls Bette "Psycho Spice", a reference to the British pop singing group The Spice Girls, who each had "Spice" nicknames to describe their personalities.
  • Lois also tells Clark that her being jealous of him would be like Willie Mays being jealous of a bat boy, a reference to the legendary American Major League Baseball center fielder who spent most of his career playing for the New York and San Francisco Giants and was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1979.
  • Lois calls Clark "Houdini" because of his quick exit while they were at the hospital. This was a reference to the Hungarian-American illusionist and stunt performer, Harry Houdini, well-known for his sensational escape acts.


Recurring sets


Lois: But what's with the wardrobe malfunction?
Clark: What? This is a nice shirt.
Lois: Human Resources is going to be down here any minute, and you do not want to meet them looking like... the brawny lumberjack.

Lois: Lucky for you it's a slow news day and I was at my desk, otherwise you could have spent your entire career being nicknamed Farm Boy or Flannel Man.

Chloe: Even a dress shirt can't hide the hero in you, huh, Clark? Heck of a first day at the office.
Clark: Well, that's why I'm there -- so I can be around to help more people. Working at the Daily Planet, I'll hear about every crisis as it happens. I just wish that you were there with me. You know, now that Lex isn't running things...
Chloe: Yeah. I've spent almost my entire life praying to the gods of journalism. It might be kind of nice to try something new, you know? See how it feels.

Clark: Apparently the goddess of journalism is wondering where I am.
Chloe: With Lois on the case, it's gonna get harder to duck away to save the day.
Clark: If I could hide my secret from you, I think I can handle your cousin.
Chloe: (chuckles) Good luck with that.

Clark: I'm Clark Kent.
Davis: Davis Bloome. I met your fiancée. Clark, congratulations. She's a real catch.
Clark: I'm getting married?
Davis: Well, I thought that-- 'cause I thought you and Chloe were together, and you seemed pretty close. When she said she was engaged...
Clark: Chloe's engaged?
Davis: Oh, man, okay, my brain's completely gone completely D.O.A. Clark, she said she hadn't told anyone yet. Do me a favor. Don't tell her I said anything.
Clark: I won't reveal my source.

Lois: Tess Mercer is a pit bull in Prada. There's no way she'd roll out the welcome mat for a copyboy no matter how charming his smile is.
Clark: You think I have a charming smile?
Lois: I think you're about to lose some teeth if you don't tell me what she said.
Clark: Lois, you sound like a jealous girlfriend.
Lois: Jealous. Of you? Please. That would be like Willie Mays being jealous of a batboy.

Lois: Basically, that firecracker was a major menace to Metropolis.
Clark: But there's no mention of explosives in any of his crimes, Lois. If you were a criminal, with these abilities, wouldn't you use them?
Lois: Well if Tommy didn't kill himself then who did?
Clark: Bette claimed that Tommy blew up the bus, but she was there for both of the blasts.
Lois: Oh, my God. My cousin's babysitting Psycho Spice.

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ComicsThe Comic · Season 11 · Miniseries