While we saw the setup in Episode 4, My Adventures with Superman Episode 5 steers us in the direction of the main trio being at odds. Lois is upset over Clark’s lies, and Jimmy feels abandoned by Lois and Clark as they miss their meet-up for their planned camping trip. While this rift is likely a mere blip in the overall series, it’s effective primarily due to how it brings to light their insecurities and hangups regarding being left behind, kept in the dark, or exposed. “You Will Believe a Man Can Lie” is the best episode to date both because of the character development as well as two action set pieces that utilize the abilities of our heroes as well as those of the antagonists they’re facing.
There’s only one small blip in the episode. The drama stems from their relationships so even though as the audience we have greater context as to why Clark has been so MIA with Jimmy due to his Superman obligations we also understand his hurt. Both Lois and Clark are asking Jimmy to cover for them as they engage in their own side projects and from the start of the episode them forgetting the camping trip in telegraphed. That said, even though we feel for Jimmy his storyline is lacking in comparison to the main push as Lois tries to convince Clark to admit to him being Superman. Jimmy’s voice actor Ishmel Sahid is hilarious, his voice becoming more erratic as his main company of the week, main sports reporter Steve continues to compare the two much to Jimmy’s horror.
Lois, meanwhile, is in fine form in general this week. She keeps trying to lead Clark into confessing because once she knows it all becomes obvious. And her attempts only mount in desperation. She chases him around the city to force another interview, a strong indication of her resolve (and stubbornness.) She handcuffs them together, a hilarious move since he could easily break out of them but instead, in a moment of confusion, forgets to as the two fight the villain of the week in a feat of fun and swift action choreography. Her biggest action though is to put her life on the line, falling off the building he’d deposited her on to keep her safe to force his hand in saving her to prove his powers.
It might be the confirmation she needed of the truth of his powers as he holds them both airborne, but it comes after a scene that demonstrates Clark’s immense growing pains. The drama surrounding the tech that had been dispersed by Livewire to other local thieves and petty criminals culminates in a standoff between Deathstroke who is working with Amanda Waller and a mysterious figure known as The General. Deathstroke says that they’re “the good guys” but there’s little doubt they’re anything but — especially when it comes to Clark/Superman.
Using all the tech we’ve seen so far — ice ray, robots, etc — Deathstroke has been tasked to stop and “contain” Superman. The General states — “I’m the one keeping the earth safe” — determined to capture Superman though we don’t know what motivates him to do so beyond an arbitrary warning of “Net Zero”. The battle between Deathstroke and Superman reaches its peak when it threatens civilians, the impact of Superman hitting the highway structures causing them to begin to crumble. That, it would seem, is a step too far for The General though Waller and Deathstroke seem perfectly fine to lose a few lives to ensure capturing Superman.
The bruising — literally — fight scene further demonstrates how this is all so new for Superman and since he’s still in the throes of figuring it all out — his powers and how to use them — it makes him more vulnerable. The injuries stick this time too, making him seem even more exposed as those fighting him are coming at him with an attack plan, armed with motivations he’s none the wiser of. It’s the worst possible time for him to have a fallout with Lois too, who accuses him of lies, saying:
“Secrets are just another type of lie.”
On the one hand, we understand why Lois is so hurt by this, especially as she and Clark had been at the start of a romantic relationship. That said, when Clark tries to explain to her that he’s still new to this and was worried, especially when she’d told him she planned on exposing all of Superman’s secrets, our hearts go out to him. Again, this is a vulnerable version of the hero. With no idea who he is or where he came from, of course, the idea of having his entire identity deconstructed for the sake of news would be terrifying.
Jimmy goes missing, though that’s a bit of an afterthought and more of a setup for next week’s episode.
My Adventures with Superman Episode 5 is demonstrative of the series’ ability to build emotionally impactful moments of high tension and stakes all the while keeping it PG. The show doesn’t need to go the Harley Quinn or Peacemaker route of DC television and, instead, offers Superman’s story with little bloodshed and swearing. It might seem old-fashioned, even childish to some, but the showrunners are managing to create some of the very best versions of these characters to date, with beautiful animation and production from studio Mir, a consistently rousing score, and strong writing that emboldens and embellishes on these existing, iconic characters.
My Adventures With Superman Episode 5 is available to stream on Max, with new episodes airing every Thursday at midnight on Adult Swim.
My Adventures with Superman Episode 5
My Adventures with Superman Episode 5 is demonstrative of the series’ ability to build emotionally impactful moments of high tension and stakes all the while keeping it PG. The showrunners are managing to create some of the very best versions of these characters to date, with beautiful animation and production from studio Mir.