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- "We didn't find him. He found us." - Martha Kent (Pilot)
Like any parent, Martha Kent was shown from the start to have high expectations for her extraordinary son. However, she also proved to be Clark's more easy-going parent and often deferred difficult decisions to Jonathan. She let him decide if Clark could join the football team or keep a new truck, an extravagant gift given to Clark by Lex Luthor. She also let Jonathan be the one to tell Clark about his true origins. When Clark joined the football team against Jonathan's wishes, Martha tried to play peacekeeper. When Clark suddenly developed X-Ray vision he first saved Martha from being run over by Tina Greer, then he and Martha helped solve a bank robbery Tina committed as well.
Clark often asked his mother for advice when dealing with his long-standing crush on Lana Lang. Initially, Martha knew that Lana was happy in her relationship with Whitney Fordman and advised Clark to proceed cautiously if he did not want his feelings hurt. However, Martha also recognized that Clark really only had two close friends, Pete Ross and Chloe Sullivan, so she often helped him cultivate a friendship with Lana.
As Clark grew closer to Lex Luthor, Jonathan was quick to judge Lex, but Martha was willing to try to see the young man in a different light than his ruthless father Lionel. She trusted Clark to decide for himself if Lex was trustworthy. Martha and Jonathan also sometimes had differing opinions on the best way to successfully run the Kent Farm. Plagued with long-standing financial difficulties, Martha sought innovative ways to raise income. She was willing to hear what Lex Luthor had to say when he proposed to invest in some area farms and modernize them to make them more profitable and invited them to discuss his prospects. She convinced Jonathan to go, but Jonathan chose to take out a bank loan instead.
Martha was the unwitting target of Harry Volk after meteor rocks made him mysteriously age backwards. Because Clark, Chloe, and Pete got too close to catching Volk, he approached Martha on the farm to kill her. She was able to outrun him but he prevented her from leaving by slashing her tires and cutting the phone line. Martha hid in a grain silo and got away by burying herself and Volk in grain. Clark and Jonathan arrived just in time to save her and capture Volk.
On their anniversary that year, Martha admitted to Jonathan that she sometimes misses living in the city, but doesn't regret moving to Smallville. Shortly after, Clark got involved with Sam Phelan who tried to blackmail him into stealing for him. He even got Jonathan arrested by planting a body in their barn. While Clark reacted with anger and frustration, Martha remained calm and level-headed until Jonathan's name was clear. Similarly, when Bob Rickman hypnotized Jonathan into selling the farm, Martha was angry but got things worked out. She was more concerned to learn that Clark was shot multiple times, but remained relatively bullet-proof. When Clark's powers were transferred to Eric Summers due to lightning, she and Jonathan tried to help him adjust. Clark was concerned that his parents would see him differently but they reassured him. Eric was dangerously violent, but Martha assured Clark that she has never been afraid of him.
Martha and Jonathan let Chloe interview them for a school biography project about Clark. They told her that they used the Metropolis United Charity to arrange the adoption. When Jonathan fell ill due to the Nicodemus flower, Lex promised Martha that he would do everything he could to find a cure. Martha accidentally hit Ryan James with her car and took him to the hospital. When the doctor disclosed that Ryan was possibly abused, she agreed that it would be best for him to stay with the Kents until a relative could be found. She was pleased to see Clark and Ryan bond and wondered if they should have adopted a sibling for Clark as well. Martha tried to mediate between Clark and Jonathan when they got into a fight about Clark's friendship with Lex.
Clark continued to seek relationship advice from Martha when he wondered if he should develop his friendship with Chloe into something more. Martha advised him to ask Chloe to the Spring Formal if he was indeed considering being more than friends with her. When tornadoes hit the town that spring, Martha and Jonathan took refuge in their storm cellar where they were shocked to see the ship had been activated. It blasted a beam of light in the cellar, which was videotaped by Roger Nixon. Martha was horrified when Jonathan left the safety of the shelter in the middle of the storm to chase after Nixon.