Season three of Smallville brought several more hidden facts about the Kryptonian heritage of young Clark Kent (Tom Welling) to the forefront -- and also provided a few additional links to Clark's future life as Superman. The series also found the unsavory past of billionaire industrialist Lionel Luthor (John Glover) catching up with him, profoundly affecting his mixed-up son, Lex (Michael Rosenbaum), who had already been battered about when a team of doctors attempted to purge him of his "delusions" (read: his memories of Lionel's perfidy). The season began with Clark, still under the addictive influence of red kryptonite, angrily renouncing his friends and family in Smallville and exiling himself to Metropolis, where he briefly entered into a life of crime under the tutelage of sinister Morgan Edge (played variously during this season by Rutger Hauer and Patrick Bergin), who, like many villainous characters on the series, was an associate of the redoubtable Lionel Luthor. In order to rescue Clark, the boy's adoptive father, Jonathan Kent (John Schneider), entered into a strange bargain with Clark's Kryptonian birth father, Jor-El (Terence Stamp), the ramifications of which would permeate the action for the remainder of the season. Once safely returned to Smallville, Clark underwent the by-now-standard curious experiences wherein he was obliged to utilize his unique powers wisely and without giving his dual identity away. He also discovered a few new powers, among them super-hearing and (it was implied) the ability to fly. On the romantic front, Clark's relationship with Lana Lang (Kristin Kreuk) went through a variety of ups and downs -- especially during a rather harrowing story arc involving a mercurial young man named Adam Knight (Ian Somerhalder) -- reaching a climax of sorts at season's end when Lana decided to leave Smallville in order to study art in Paris. Meanwhile, another of Clark's female acquaintances, budding girl reporter Chloe Sullivan (Allison Mack) drew ever closer to unearthing a number of secrets involving both Clark and Lex. She also revealed something that many viewers had long suspected: she was related to a certain high-profile Metropolis reporter named Lois Lane (who would become a regular character in season four). Not satisfied with dangling this tantalizing foretaste of things to come for young Clark Kent, the Smallville producers also used season three to introduce Clark's future boss, Perry White, here played by Michael McKean -- the real-life husband of Annette O'Toole, the actress who played Clark's adoptive mother, Martha Kent.
As season three drew to a conclusion, Clark had come face to face with another refugee from Krypton, a superpowered girl named Kara (Adrianne Palicki), who urged our hero to renounce his earthly ways and fulfill his "destiny." Meanwhile, the true nature of Lex Luthor was exposed in all its tawdry glory, and two of the series' most stalwart characters, Chloe Sullivan and Pete Ross (Sam Jones III), were poised to make their respective exits -- and it was painfully clear that at least one of them would never, ever return. ~ Hal Erickson, Rovi