OK, as a newly converted Smallvillager, I need to say that this may be one of the best episodes I've seen this year. Between the killer special effects and the Freaky Friday switcheroo between Lionel and Clark, there was just too much fun going on. Even my roomie got sucked in, but that probably has something to do with Tom Welling's hotter-than-red-Kryptonite bad-boy swagger as a Lionel in Kent clothing. Seriously, I don't think either of us are right after that bit with the Luthorized Clark checking out his own equipment. See that look he gave himself? Guess Lana really is missing out, huh? What wasn't missing tonight were plot developments, which were flying faster than a speeding bullet with Jason's extra-curricular affairs coming to light; Lionel figuring out both Clark's secret powers and Lex's betrayal, and enough backstory on Lana's tattoo to have me bookmarking for future reference. In fact, even though I'm totally bumming that we won't have new episodes until April, the next few weeks of repeats will give me a chance to figure out what Margot Kidder's planning for that stone with switcheroo powers, why the usually clued-in Chloe didn't catch on to Sexy Clark calling her "Miss Sullivan" after his brutal kiss-tease and where the hell Lois was all night. Because I think I have a little crush on her. That's not, like, comic-book-fanboy weird, is it? — Damian Holbrook

I thought it would be less heart-wrenching to watch this episode again since I already knew the ending. I was wrong. Watching Jack beat the heck out of Charlie in order to revive him, paired with Jack's tattling on his super-intense dad, is still too much for this girl to take. Didn't Charlie have any broken ribs? Regardless, Jack was able to find Charlie just in the nick of time, thanks to the trail of clues that the former hobbit knew to leave from his experience with those nasty orcs. And speaking of tracking people, if I am ever stranded on a desert island, I want Locke with me. Sure, he's a little creepy sometimes, but he can hunt and he just seems to know everything. How'd he get this knowledge working at Hurley's box company? Someone must have majored in outdoor activities. And if the castaways ever do escape mystery island, Walt's going to be set for life with the fortune that Hurley lost to him playing backgammon. On the numbers front, Kate said she used to spend eight hours tracking with her dad — woo hoo, another eight. But Hurley said he placed 17th in a tournament... where does that figure into this whole convoluted thing? This show's going to drive me crazy. In a good way... I think. — Angel Cohn

American Idol
First off, Ryan Seacrest deserves to be beaten with tree limbs soaked in Sea Breeze for making poor Carrie and Constantine think they were out like that. He ain't right at all. The Top 12, however, is very right. Along with the aforementioned Seacrest victims, we've got Lindsay, Scott, Mario, Vonzell, Anthony, Bo, Mikalah, Jessica and my future text-messaging fees, Anwar and Nadia. Sure, a few of them may already be short on shelf life — yes, I'm talking about you, Mikalah — but the elimination of Janay more than makes up for losing Amanda, Nikko and Travis. Plus, now I don't have to give up believing in God. Oh, and to those of you up in arms (and nasty e-mails) over my failure to recognize Janay's losing tune as Selena's "Dreaming of You," how about going a little easy? After all, it's impossible to recognize even mediocre songs over the screams as they're being tortured like that, OK? — DH

How ironic. On the day I take over Alias coverage from my talented colleague Damian Holbrook, there was a character named "Damian" mentioned in tonight's episode (that was Mr. Blackwell's first name, if you didn't catch it).

Anyway, they almost got me. I knew there was a major twist coming as the gang was closing in on Sloane in Brussels, but I was totally shocked when I saw Jack sitting there (what's up with those glasses, Clark?) with the reforming Alliance. However, during the commercial break I remembered the pact Jack and Sloane had mentioned, so I immediately figured this was a setup. Nicely done, though.

A long overdue welcome back to Angela "Don't mess with me" Bassett. Was that some coy flirtation between her and the normally stoic Dixon at the end? That would be a kick... well, until she dies tragically or ends up in a coma or something. In romance corner No. 2, we have Nadia and Weiss, who's as subtle as a junior-high dweeb passing a folded note that says "Do you like me? Check the 'Yes' box or the 'No' box."

Eeriest moment that seemed like something out of Lost: Vaughn being told that no nurse named Rosemary was tending to his uncle. Something creepy is obviously going on with Vaughn's not-so-dead daddy. Just please, may we not find out that Vaughn and Sydney are first cousins. — Danny Spiegel

The West Wing
Super Tuesday looms in La-La Land, and the media is all abuzz about the freakin' polls instead of the issues. Values dominate the debate, politicians play it safe — and I'm cowering under the covers in the middle of a flashback to November 3, 2004, crying "No! No! It can't be! Please say it isn't so!" Ah, if only there were mulligans in politics... but I digress.

I knew it would happen. Santos snatched the pebble from Josh's hand and became the kind of slick politician who "pivots" when asked a question to avoid giving any answer other than the one he has prepared. He's even willing to risk the scorn of the Latino community if it will keep him in the race! But the newly anointed connoisseur of connivance manages to put himself quite literally in the right position, earning what appears to be the governor's endorsement without ever so much as acknowledging the controversial legislation at hand. "Very good, Grasshopper."

OK, Hoyne bowing out of the race under accusations of "sexual misconduct" was a little too convenient, but screw it. Who cares? Bartlet's swan song is only five episodes away, and we've got a lot of ground left to cover before Santos moves into the White House — not to imply that I have the inside scoop, because I don't. It's just that, as much as I like Alan Alda, I want, no, I need to see Jimmy Smits in that role. I need Santos, you hear me!? Hell, I know it's a fantasy, and it might be more dramatic to play "regime swap" (ooh, which reminds me. Gotta submit that reality pitch to Fox), but fantasy has its place, and sometimes it's better if art doesn't imitate life, know what I mean?

Line of the night: "Congressman, would you sign my hernia truss?" — At least he wasn't wearing it. — Dan Roberts