Laura Vandervoort with Tom Welling, <I>Smallville</i> Laura Vandervoort with Tom Welling, Smallville

After spending what to us seemed like an eternity trapped in the Phantom Zone (thanks, Brainiac!), Clark Kent's cousin returns this Thursday to Smallville (8 pm/ET, the CW). Laura Vandervoort shared with us a super peek at where Kara has been... and where her own career is going. (Hint: She donned a bikini to follow in Jessica Alba's barefootsteps.) Where in the universe has Kara been?
Laura Vandervoort: She's been in the Phantom Zone — and apparently Smallville had forgotten that, because no one has mentioned her since the season started. [Laughs] Is she any worse for the wear?
Vandervoort: Yeah. Time passes by faster in the Phantom Zone, but when Clark finds her she's a little bit messed up in the head. She's on-edge and not quite herself. What, overall, is the "Bloodline" episode about?
Vandervoort: It's about Clark and Kara coming together as a family, but perhaps deciding that they need to not be in the same place to best help the world. There's a little line at the end of the episode about how they'll always be close to each other's hearts and be family, no matter what. Is this where Kara urges Clark to don some tights already?
Vandervoort: I don't think you're ever going to see him in tights. [Laughs] Does she at least give him that much-needed flying lesson...?
Vandervoort: Um, no. There was that one episode last season where she attempted to teach him and it didn't work out, so I don't think she'll be the one to do it. Do you have scenes with anyone outside of Tom Welling?
Vandervoort: I have scenes with Erica [Durance, Lois], but they don't last too long, because I knock her out — mistakenly! And I have a brief scene with Allison [Mack, Chloe]. Does Kara suspect that, as rumored, Chloe has been possessed by Brainiac?
No, she doesn't. Kara doesn't talk about Brainiac at all. Were you glad to get the call to make this return appearance?
Vandervoort: Yeah! When they told me last season they had kind of run out of storylines for me and they needed to focus on Clark, I was upset because in my mind I was planning to be back for another season. And there was also the [once-rumored Supergirl] spin-off thing. I took it personally and said to the producers, "Look, is there something I could have done better?" They said, "We want you all the time on the show." But they've got to focus on Clark and Lois, and having another superhero around who could fly, while Clark can't, wouldn't work out. Yeah, it's a bit emasculating for ol' Clark.
Vandervoort: Tom, when I left, said, "You're going to move on to good things," and [the producers] did mention I might come back for one or two [episodes]. I've been back for one, and I think that's probably it. Were you up in Canada anyway, shooting this Jazzman film?
Vandervoort: I did Into the Blue 2 [a sequel to the 2005 film starring Jessica Alba and Paul Walker] and then I went home to Toronto and I shot The Jazzman. That's a passion project for its director?
Vandervoort: Yes, Josh Koffman, who's the grandson of Moe Koffman. It's inspired by Moe's life story. Josh is a young director with a lot of passion, so we were excited to be a part of it. [Vandervoort's longtime boyfriend] Cory Sevier is basically playing Josh, and I play his girlfriend, the one who inspires him to do what he can with his music. Will Into the Blue 2 be as fun-to-watch of a guilty pleasure as the original?
Vandervoort: I think it will be better. We had some really great actors, like Chris Carmack [The O.C.] and Marsha Thomason (Las Vegas) and David Anders (Alias).... I can't wait to see it. There's a lot of action for me! Did you learn any new skills for it?
Vandervoort: Yeah, all of us had to get certified for scuba diving before we left for Hawaii. We also had volleyball training. Which did you wind up better at — scuba diving or volleyball?
Vandervoort: Scuba diving. [Laughs] I wish I could say volleyball, but that's a sport I've never been able to pick up very well. How is Audrina Patridge (The Hills) in it? This was one of her first legit acting projects.
Vandervoort: I didn't have any scenes with her.... What, not even one on-screen catfight?
Vandervoort: No, my character has nothing to do with hers. Chris Carmack and I are a couple, and our worst enemy is dating Audrina. But she's so sweet, a really great girl. I heard she did a great job. Do you have anything else coming up?
Vandervoort: I did a TV-movie called Out of Control, playing a forensic scientist/criminologist/wannabe cop.... Oh lord. Did you master the lingo?
Vandervoort: That was the toughest part, the CSI lingo. I had a lot of scientific terminology to spout out like it's nothing, but it all worked out in the end!

Crave TV scoop? E-mail Matt and Mickey at