WARNING: The following contains major spoilers for Superman & Lois Season 1, Episode 13, “Fail Safe,” which aired Tuesday on The CW.
In last week’s episode of Superman & Lois, Superman (Tyler Hoechlin) and John Henry Irons (Wolé Parks) joined forces to stop Morgan Edge (Adam Rayner), aka Tal-Rho. Before his capture, the villain used his heat vision to destroy the Eradicator, and, as the episode came to a close, he was locked up in a Kryptonite-powered prison cell at the Department of Defense and showed signs that the destruction of the Eradicator had changed him. Now, as “Fail Safe” begins, Edge is still locked up, and he’s clearly going through some sort of change, hearing the voices of his father, as well as a cacophony of other Kryptonians.
Superman visits his half-brother to get answers about Leslie Larr’s location and the Eradicator, but Tal-Rho doesn’t answer. Instead, he tries to convince Kal-El that he enjoyed the brief freedom he experienced when Zod took over his body. Superman objects, but Tal insists — he knows how difficult Kal must work to keep his powers in check at all times, and he’s certain that it came as a relief for him to finally let go. Superman leaves him in his cell, but Tal’s words appear to have gotten to him.
At the Kent farm, life is slowly getting back to normal. Clark tells his family that the DoD will remain in Smallville a little while longer, but Jordan (Alex Garfin) and Jonathan (Jordan Elsass) can finally head back to school to resume their normal lives. Similarly, Lois (Elizabeth Tulloch) heads back to work at the Smallville Gazette. Her editor, Chrissy Beppo, wants Lois to write about what happened with Edge and the Department of Defense, but Lois can’t divulge the whole truth. Chrissy, furious with Lois’ lack of integrity, asks the reporter to leave.
Meanwhile, Clark attends to the Kent’s houseguest, John Henry Irons, who has set up shop inside the barn. Irons is still working on his suit while considering what he will do next. Soon after, Superman and Irons are called into action when Leslie Larr is finally located. The missing Kryptonian is flying towards the DoD, with the intent of breaking Edge out. Thankfully, Superman interrupts her just in time, and he and Irons, wearing his trademark “Steel” suit, team up to take out Leslie. She ends up locked up at the DoD as well, and Superman and Irons both meet with Sam Lane (Dylan Walsh) now that the mission to stop all of Edge’s Kryptonians is finally done. Lane says that with the last of the Kryptonians rounded up, he can finally shut down Project 7734 and get rid of all the Kryptonite weapons the DoD designed.
However, while Sam, Lois and even Irons seem to agree to destroy the weapons, Clark himself is the one who is uncertain. Later, he revisits Sam and says that destroying the weapons is a mistake. The truth is, they are the only weapons that could make the difference if he ends up being corrupted again. This time, he was able to fight back and free himself, but next time, that might not happen.
Elsewhere, Jordan and Jonathan Kent head off on little adventures of their own. After they both get to school, the prospect of an assembly addressing the recent events involving the Department of Defense and Morgan Edge doesn’t sound all that appealing to them. As for Sarah Cushing (Inde Navarrette), she is getting ridiculed for the part her family played in unknowingly helping Edge and has no interest in hanging around at school. She asks Jordan to ditch school with her, and the two head off on some sort of impromptu date, while something similar happens to Jonathan. After some of his friends ask him questions about his grandfather and the DoD, his crush, Tegan Wickhem, asks him if he wants to forget about school for today and go for a drive instead.
Jordan and Sarah find their way to a lake, where Sarah expresses her disdain for the people of Smallville for the way they are treating her family. Jordan insists that he is there for her, no matter what, but after sharing a kiss, they are interrupted by the police, who arrest them both for trespassing on private property. As for Jonathan, he drives through Smallville with Tegan, who pesters him with questions about Edge and the DoD. Soon, he realizes that she isn’t interested in him and that she’s only talking to him to try and find out what happened. Angry, he leaves Tegan there and walks back to the farm.
Back at the farm, Jonathan reunites with John Henry Irons, who puts the finishing touches on his armor. The two briefly talk about how Jon doesn’t have to be only one thing, but the conversation is cut short by Clark, who bursts in asking why his son isn’t at school. After talking with her father, Lois returns home, ready to fight with Clark over his decision to keep the DoD’s Kryptonite-powered weapons. The dispute, however, is interrupted when Lois gets a call from the police. She and Lana Lang (Emmanuelle Chriqui) both head over to the station to bail out Jordan and Sarah, who are thankfully let go with a warning. While there, Lana overhears the town’s two-faced mayor trying to use her husband, Kyle, as a scapegoat for what happened with Edge and gives him a piece of her mind. As for Kyle, he has been going through a rough patch, with his fellow firefighters and the entire town turning his back on him, and he’s considering having his whole family start fresh outside of Smallville.
At home, Lois and Clark sit down to continue their conversation. Clark explains what he experienced when Zod controlled him, and that it is extremely dangerous. Even if these were Zod’s feelings, Clark is scared that if something similar happens again, he won’t be able to save himself. Lois, understanding his point of view, agrees to keep the weapons as a fail-safe, but she doesn’t want to leave them with the DoD. She wants them to belong to someone they trust: John Henry Irons. Clark asks John to fulfill this massive favor for him, and, after some initial pushback, he agrees.
Lois later returns to the Gotham Gazette with a statement from her father and asks Chrissy to write the piece in her stead. Thankfully, this goes a long way in patching things up between the two reporters. But the threat of Edge is far from passed. At the DoD, Tal-Rho finally surrenders to the voices inside of him, and he allows himself to be taken over by the Eradicator. Because of this, he gets a massive power boost that allows him to escape. Superman searches for the villain across the entire planet, but he isn’t anywhere on Earth. As the episode comes to a close, Tal is hovering next to the sun, absorbing all of its solar energy. For now, Edge is no more — and the Eradicator is born.
Superman & Lois stars Tyler Hoechlin, Elizabeth Tulloch, Dylan Walsh, Alex Garfin, Jordan Elsass, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Inde Navarrette and Wolé Parks. The series airs Tuesdays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on The CW.
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