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Tom Top Ten: Pain - I worship at the television altar
Tom Top Ten: Pain

Welcome to another edition of my Tom Top Ten! This is the fourth in a series of mini (just 10 pics each) picspams in celebration of Tom Welling, highlighting the wonderful performances he gives us, episode after episode. I call this one Pain.

1) 1.03 - Hothead. Clark goes to talk to Coach Arnold about his abuse of his players, but is felled by the meteor rocks in the coach's sauna.

2) 2.03 - Duplicity. Clark rushes to Dr. Hamilton's barn to rescue Pete, but is incapacitated by the large quantities of kryptonite stored there.

3) 3.01 - Exile. Clark's chest burns with pain from the scar with which Jor-El has branded him.

4) 3.03 - Extinction. Clark has been shot with a kryptonite bullet! He is in unbearable pain as his parents frantically attempt to remove it.

5) 4.08 - Spell. Clark, battered and bloody, has been left to suffer by the witches possessing Lana, Chloe, and Lois, when Jason comes to his rescue.

6) 4.14 - Krypto. After escaping with Shelby's help from the cage where he has been imprisoned next to kryptonite, Clark collapses on the ground.

7) 6.22 - Phantom. Clark lies stunned after he goes flying, and not in a good way, when the Phantom rushes him to steal his DNA.

8) 7.14 - Traveler. Clark writhes in agony as he is trapped in a kryptonite-lined cell, tortured by a sadistic LuthorCorp security agent.

9) 7.18 - Apocalypse. In an AU of Jor-El's making, Clark is shot with a kryptonite bullet by POTUS Lex Luthor.

10) 7.19 - Quest. Weakened by kryptonite and bound to a sacrificial altar by madman Edward Teague, Clark lies helpless as Teague inexplicably carves the symbol of the House of El into his chest

Screen caps courtesy of acampbell, KEakaCK, and SVFan, with my thanks!

And there you have my choices for Tom's Top Ten performances where he tears me up inside with Clark's agony. Poor Clark! Do you have a different Pain favorite? If so, tell us about it in the comments. And look for another Tom Top Ten picspam soon!

Did you miss the previous Tom Top Tens? Click to see Dangerous, Broken, and Happy.

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58 comments or Leave a comment
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jeannev From: jeannev Date: September 16th, 2008 01:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
One of the things Tom had to master quickly was writhing in pain. And he does it wonderfully (and often, too often for my tastes). I don't think people really appreciate how hard it can be to do that as an actor, and not look foolish. Tom has it down to a science. Traveler especially was a great rendering of Clark in pain.

Whoops, meant to nominate a moment...Clark in Nemesis. I love the way he cradles his arm throughout the episode. And I love his crawl through the tunnel into Lex's waiting arms.

Edited at 2008-09-16 01:52 pm (UTC)
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 02:09 pm (UTC) (Link)
I agree, for someone who is invulnerable, Clark goes through a great deal of physical pain. And I think Tom just keeps getting better at it. I was so frantic and upset during that horrible scene in Quest, and that was before they showed anything. I was just reacting to the look of pure incredulity and pain on Tom's face!

Of course Nemesis was on my short list. Here is the cap I had saved:

laurelnola From: laurelnola Date: September 16th, 2008 02:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Funny. I look just like these pictures whenever Smallville comes on, now. *big grin* Just kidding.

Actually, this one was easy for me. There was no "Clark in pain" scene that got me like the end scene of "Vengeance", when he cries over his father in his mother's arms. (Can't post a picture of it because I have the cheap-o version of LJ! Sorry!) I think it's because in all the physical pain images, you know he's going to be just dandy the second the kryptonite is gone. His heart, however, is the one thing that doesn't heal instantly. TW actually brought tears to my eyes in that one. *sniffs*
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 10:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
hee! You always make me laugh! *hugs*

Oh, yes, I agree with you that the pain of the heart is infinitely more devastating than anything Clark experiences physically. Did you see my Tom Top Ten called Broken? I included that moment from Vengeance there. What makes it so unique to me is that it's one of the very few times that Clark shows his emotion in a big way. I think that was a deliberate choice by Tom, because losing his father was the most traumatic thing that had ever happened to Clark.

In putting this post together, I realized that Tom plays Clark's physical pain larger than life (obviously, kryptonite is unbearably painful, seeing as how it makes his blood boil and all), but plays his emotional pain in a quiet, nuanced fashion, with bleak, heartbreaking looks that only hint at the true pain inside. He is, as always, my hero. :)
carolandtom From: carolandtom Date: September 16th, 2008 02:41 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh TC! I love Clark so much! but there's something in the way Tom plays a hurt Clark that never fails to appeal to me and makes me re-watch those scenes and imagine Tom playing them when I read TC fics. Oh TC!

As usual, great choice of moments and pics! I would have chosen the scarecrow moment from the Pilot as well. That's the first time we see a hurt Clark, and on the very first episode of the series! Poor Clark! He had been emotionally hurt with the revelation of his origins and of his involuntary involvement with the meteor shower and, a little bit later, he has to go through a terrible experience that causes him severe emotional and physical pain. We should have known Clark was in for a very painful ride throughout the series!

Awesome picspam! Tom suffers like no one else while managing to be unbelievably beautiful!
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 10:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
At first I included the scarecrow moment, because as you say, it was the first time Clark understood his vulnerability, and it was so fascinating to me that the symbol of his weakness was a necklace worn by the girl he loved more than any other. But in the end I went with the bigger, more physical scenes.

I love the way Tom surrenders himself to these extreme moments. That takes courage in an actor, I think. His commitment to the role astounds me at times, which is why I picked the cap I did for the title header. Well, that and because his body just looks amazing there. ;)

Thanks for your comment! I'm glad you liked this one!
whimsywinx From: whimsywinx Date: September 16th, 2008 02:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
There's just something about a man in pain. Does that make me a sadist?
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 10:55 pm (UTC) (Link)
LOL! That's not it, silly, it's because you want to comfort him and make it all better! :)
eeyore1017 From: eeyore1017 Date: September 16th, 2008 04:23 pm (UTC) (Link)
I agree with everyone else who has commented so far that Tom does a really good job of writhing in believable (fake) pain. I remember reading Laura Vandervoort talking about Tom helping her with how she should act when she encounters Kryptonite. I think her quote said something about him telling her to act like she has a really bad stomachache. :-)

Out of all of your pictures, I think the one from Traveler is my favorite, due to the hip action. :-)
I think the hardest one to watch was from Quest- too graphic for me.

Another "Pain" moment that came to mind (and there certainly are a lot) was from Obsession:

Tom always looks beautiful no matter what he's doing. Thank you for these wonderful pictures! I can't wait for the next set!
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 11:11 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks for posting that cap from Obsession. It's perfect, and it shows just how buckets o' crazy Alicia was! Which did nothing to diminish my love for her. :)

There was no way I was going to include the caps from Traveler that showed ET's handiwork; they were just too horrible. But I'm amazed at Tom's face in that cap, which takes place as ET is cutting into Clark's chest. His look says everything, and is the embodiment of disbelief, outrage, and pain, all rolled into one. I can't believe he's acting! He's so awesome!

It's so funny that you mention LV, because as I was hunting down caps for this picspam, I noticed how great she was at reacting to the kryptonite in Lara. I guess she learned from the master!

I'm glad you're enjoying these! If I can swing it, I'll be posting another one on Thursday.
netlynn From: netlynn Date: September 16th, 2008 04:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
O.M.G. TC! Why is that so hot? And you know what? You and I are on the same thinking here lately, because these are all my favorites too. What is it about him writhing that is so damn hot??

Heh. I have a few moving examples. :p

Thank you again, for all the lustful images you've provided lately. You know you're getting me more and more excited about Thursday, right?

Congrats on the new TV and Blu-Ray. *iz jealous* I had to LOL at the manip with the hubby and the football. Smart woman!!!

Edited at 2008-09-16 04:36 pm (UTC)
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 11:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
OMG, I love your gifs so much! I could stare at that one from Traveler ALL DAY!! And thanks for including the one from Spell, too. The pic I chose doesn't give us the benefit of that magnificent chest. ;)

Putting these together has made me even more excited for Thursday as well. I'm so full of Tommy love right now I'm about to explode. TWO DAYS!!

I do love my new TV, although it was fully occupied with football games both Sunday and last night. :D My hubby has never been one of those guys with an obsession for new toys, but he sure loves this one!
goodvibe From: goodvibe Date: September 16th, 2008 05:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Those moments from 'Exile' and 'Traveler' in particular are just, gah!

I don't know if it constitutes as pain (certainly not physically) but at the end of 'Hidden' when Clark walks through the door, literally looking like the world collapsed on him, I don't know, it was just very effectively portrayed by TW. The pain of realization and resignation.
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 16th, 2008 11:52 pm (UTC) (Link)
You know, that moment from Hidden is one of my favorites. Jor-El has just promised to exact a terrible price for returning Clark's life and powers, and Clark is helpless to stop him. It's such an awful burden to carry, and it seems so unfair. Your description, the pain of realization and resignation, is just perfect. I have that scene in mind for a different Tom Top Ten, but I'm not sure if it fits yet.

I also love the Clana reunion that follows Clark's return, just because visually it's so stunning to see the contrast of Tom's ginormousness next to KK's teeny-tiny frame, with her feet so far off the floor, and because the two of them play it so tenderly. It's happy and sad all at the same time, because although they're together again, you know they've lost that brief, carefree time where Clark didn't have his powers, and in that, their chance for lasting happiness.
drusplace From: drusplace Date: September 16th, 2008 06:31 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh! This post HURTS!!!!!!!!!

I think Exile is the one where I feel Clark's pain the most, because it isn't just physical pain.
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:01 am (UTC) (Link)
When I look at that cap from Exile, all I can think about is how hot Tom looks, and how deliciously his f**k lines disappear into his jeans. And how he appears to be going commando. *is extremely shallow*

Sorry to tarnish your very nice comment with my baser instincts. :)
svgurl From: svgurl Date: September 16th, 2008 06:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
Wow, Tom really does pain well. And yes, he does go through it way too often lately. Poor guy ... I'm kinda upset that they never showed the effects of the "Traveler" kidnapping. It's his worst nightmare and they didn't even let him talk about it for one minute. :\

But I'm going off topic. These are fabulous scenes you chose. Poor Clark.

Thanks for this!
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:03 am (UTC) (Link)
Hey, it's never off topic in my journal if it's about Tom or Clark! :)

I'm glad you liked it! It's been cool to see Tom's range by exploring these different themes.
lexalicious70 From: lexalicious70 Date: September 16th, 2008 10:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
That moment from "Extinction" is so hard, too, because it's one of the first times he's seriously feeling pain, and he reacts to it not like a hero, but like a young man who's confused and frightened.

I've never seen the ep with the Kryptonite cage, (still gearing up to watch season 7 DVD's,) but YOW, that hip buck up off the floor is oddly hot!

Great set!
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:36 am (UTC) (Link)
I agree about Extinction, and that was one of the things I loved about it. He was frightened, as were Jonathan and Martha, and yet they knew they had to get through it with only each other. It was one of those moments that defined them as a family, and I loved it.

I also loved Clark's ingenuity later, when he made himself the lead vest. That's my boy!

Traveler is an awesome episode all the way around, IMO. I thought it would be hard for me to watch Clark being imprisoned and tortured like that, but Tom played it so heroically, never giving in or letting Clark show even a hint of defeat, that it was actually very uplifting for me. Plus, the writhing was HOT! :D

That is a lovely icon. ♥
ivorykiss From: ivorykiss Date: September 16th, 2008 11:24 pm (UTC) (Link)
Do you have any idea what you're doing to me here girl? :p

He plays Clark's pain so well and I might enjoy it a tad too much. *sigh*

Here's another moment, from Wither, that makes me feel for him!

tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:39 am (UTC) (Link)
I thought you might like this one! ;) That cap from Wither is gorgeous, and perfect. My poor baby!

Your icon is made of awesome, you know. :D

Edited at 2008-09-17 01:31 am (UTC)
tasabian From: tasabian Date: September 16th, 2008 11:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Aw, the poor darling!

The "Krypto" pic is actually scaring me - Tom looks like the life is draining from his eyes.

(In the "Exile" 'cap I feel like a bad person for paying more attention to Clark's nipples than his pain. And his belly button.)
lexalicious70 From: lexalicious70 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:43 am (UTC) (Link)
*Is a bad person with you*

Yeah . . . that happens to me when we get Lex!chest, too. "Oh no, Lex is shot! He's . . . " *stares at nipples and abs* "He's, umm . . . I'm sorry, what was the plot again?"

talitha78 From: talitha78 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:32 am (UTC) (Link)
The many faces of TC! Love it.
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 17th, 2008 12:53 am (UTC) (Link)
I'm so happy you like it! The funny thing is, this was the most difficult one for me to put together so far, because I don't usually snag TC pics. I had to search all through Alison's archives, plus a bunch of downloaded caps I had never looked at, to find these. And now I can't get enough of them! :) This little project is broadening my horizons once again.
acampbell From: acampbell Date: September 17th, 2008 01:52 am (UTC) (Link)
Wonderful post, as always!

Now, hmmm...let's see what I can bring to the party:

Just random stuff:


I love the way Clark looks in this scene from the Pilot. Especially the gray sweater!


No words necessary for this one.



I love this scene from "Leech": Clark all smarting and pissy, Lex so ashamed and practically grovelling. Ah, those were the days...





From "Exodus"


From "Onyx". Clark is stunned that his baby would hurt him this way!


And for fun (don't hate me!)
acampbell From: acampbell Date: September 17th, 2008 02:12 am (UTC) (Link)
Oh, and I almost forgot:


katysam From: katysam Date: September 17th, 2008 12:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm home for the evening and making the most of high-speed internet to stare at poor Tom in pain. *pets him*
Seriously, he's not doing so well in that last one. (I'm trying not read too much because I haven't seen that far yet ;)
tariel22 From: tariel22 Date: September 17th, 2008 03:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
I won't spoil you, and don't read the other comments, because I talk about that cap at length in a couple of them. What I will say is that Tom puts everything he's got into his acting, and it shows. :)
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