'Inquiring freaked-out minds want to know'
There were plenty of scenes that I don't think added much to the episode they came from (Aqua, Fragile, Cyborg), but there were also some scenes I was really sorry were cut. These were mostly scenes that shed light on some of the relationships that haven't been given much screentime in Season 5.
The 'Thirst' Lex-Chloe scene was particularly strong, and I really enjoyed MR's performance in it. He plays Lex in this scene as experiencing quite ambivalent feelings--it's almost as if he catches himself really caring about Chloe's survival and then jokes it off with 'come on, Chloe, you're not finished being a pain in the butt yet, are you?' And his reactions once Chloe wakes also conflict with one another--on the one hand, his face darkens when she calls for Clark and says something has happened to Lana, but on the other hand, he strokes Chloe's face. I find it interesting that there's evidence of mixed feelings on Lex's part, but not on Chloe's at this stage. She seems terrified of him, not at all grateful, and in the deleted scene from Tomb, she doesn't seem at all surprised when Clark says Lex wants to put her in Belle Reve. To Chloe, Lex is solely a figure of menace now.
Also: 'less hair, more money' is Lexian humour par excellence!
And: Am I the only person that found it weirdly unsettling that now both Clark and Lex have injected Chloe in the chest to revive/save her?! (at least, that's what it looked like Lex was doing)
The 'Fanatic' scenes didn't do a lot for me, largely because I wasn't very invested in Jonathan's storyline. It was interesting to see how much Martha and Jonathan had argued about his health and the campaign (I really hated Jonathan telling Martha to 'support' him. Arrgh! The woman loves you and is concerned for your health--don't guilttrip her into ignoring your reckless behaviour patterns!). I'd quite love to know what Jonathan was going to 'swear' to do in the telephone conversation before the caller rang off. He really never left off with the aggressive threats, did he? And I'm not sure how I feel about the burning scarecrow as a threat. It's heavily associated with Clark in my mind, and at one level that works quite well--since Jonathan 'died protecting Clark's secret'. But I also found it jarring, and I'm not quite sure why. I did find Clark being concerned about the ethics of covering up Lex's posters veeeery cute.
Reckoning: Hmmmm. Well, personally, I'm really glad they cut this scene. I don't think it worked. I think the episode was far more powerful without it. But it was interesting to see Clark return to the Fortress--the silence he was met with was far more chilling for me than any speech Jor-El has given him in the past. It was quite hard for me to watch--Clark saying 'I didn't ask for this' (err.. yes, you did honey--not this *exactly*, but you were playing with fire), and apologising to Jonathan's dead body... Ouch! The line 'he's the only father I'll ever have' would have been more powerful if we'd heard Jor-El try to father him in that scene--in the silence, it sounded too true and not as empowering a rejection of Jor-El as, perhaps, it was intended to be on Clark's part.
'Tomb' was not an episode I particularly enjoyed the first time around. But these cut scenes were pretty solid. I personally liked seeing the young sherriff flirt with Lois--it was also good to see Lois remain determinedly focussed on the case, though willing to use his attraction to her advantage. I loved her 'inquiring freaked-out minds want to know' line. I also really enjoyed the Lexana scene. For one thing, the connection between the fire and passionate attraction was made more overt--Lana says 'there's nothing like a warm fire' and Lex says 'actually, I was just thinking of you'. Do we really think he was thinking of her? And if he was, how 'romantic' were those thoughts really? I do like the way they've used the fireplace as a site where love (or 'love'!) can be kindled. Lex is so deliberate about that fire. The image of him staring into it therefore becomes quite unsettling.
Poor Lois! They cut a stack of her scenes this season. Grr. Lois-girl that I am, I loved the 'Hypnotic' scene between her and Clark. I really like that she called Clark on his behaviour and came to Lana's defence as a friend. I don't think she should have turned a blind eye to his behaviour. I was very amused by Clark's big cheesy naive grin in response to Lois's sarcastic 'oh, that's so romantic!' And I also think Erica played the 'me?! jealous?!' part really well. Although I don't actually think that she was that jealous. It read mostly as outrage.
The Lionel scene in 'Mercy' amused me endlessly. Which it really shouldn't, because at heart I symapthise with Clark in this episode. But the sight of him staring in disbelief at Lionel cutting sandwiches on the Kent's kitchen bench was too funny for words! And Lionel offering him a cup of tea from his own teapot?! Eep! (Nice echo there of Lionel's crazy tea party with Emily.) Clark was really channelling Jonathan in that scene: 'some people are exactly what they appear to be'. I think it's a good thing the scene got cut--it pushed things a little tooo far, but I still enjoyed it.
Another Lois scene was cut from 'Fade', but I have more mixed feelings about this one. Because DEAR GOD what was that outfit? I know it was meant to be ugly, but she usually dresses so well! It scares me that she HAS that in her wardrobe. *shudders* Having said that, I am always there for a Martha/Lois scene and I totally blissed on the 'if I'd had a daughter I'd have wanterd her to be just like you' line. Again, I think Erica played Lois's reaction beautifully, letting some emotional vulnerability show briefly. I also think it's a great testament to the friendship that Martha and Lois have developed that Martha can tolerate Lois rabbitting on about her son the way she does! It seems like Martha's come to understand Lois's forthrightness and to recognise that it's not threatening or intended as rudeness.
The other Martha-Lois scene in Vessel was nearly as good. For one thing, we got some background story on the plane tickets! Joy! I was amused by Lois's 'only girly quality' and her crankiness with the online ticket scheme. And I find it interesting that the writers twice wrote in scenes where Martha acknowledged how important Lois had become to her--that she saw her as family. That they got cut both times kind of irks me. I just love those two together! (I still want a 'bestest buddies' Martha/Lois icon--maybe a cap from one of these scenes will work!) But it also made me look forward to seeing more of them, and Lois generally, in Season 6.
Finally... what the hell was that hideous birthing scene?! Eep! The actual footage was bluuuch. But I was fascinated to hear the line 'you were chosen to be a god among men' from Fine. Nice parallel there with Jor-El's 'rule them with strength'.
Whee! These made me sooo squeeful. I've missed this show so much! Many thanks to the wonderful stir_of_echoes for her generosity!