Welcome back all you Supergirl fans! The fall is here and so is a brand new season on The CW. While the season’s already begun for me over in the land of milkshakes, drama, and murder, here we get to take a lighter tone and a possibly saner one. Season premieres are generally pretty solid and while I know I’ve been wrong before, I think this bodes well for the season as a whole. Please don’t let me be wrong. . .please. Brace yourselves, for there be spoilers ahead.
1. Kara Danvers, Ace Reporter
I am shocked. SHOCKED! That Kara Danvers is a real person. Season three all but forgot about her, relegating her to being a piece of Supergirl’s life that she was desperately trying to forget and to bury, at first because of Mon-El leaving (why, why did this have to be a plot point), and then because. . .reasons. Regardless, it’s so nice to see her in a position of respectability within CatCo as well as actually acting as a reporter. Sure, we don’t get a lot of her being said reporter but what we get firmly establishes why she’s respected within the company now. Instead of resting on her laurels as the protagonist, the writers are showing us her character!
Now if only they would stop over explaining the episodic lessons and pointing out the obvious.
2. Kara Danvers, Mentor to the Stars
This other aspect of Kara gets its own thought because it touches on something the show has been missing since Cat Grant was taken out of the picture, a mentor character. We had Snapper Carr but he was too standoffish and fed into a plotline that was equal parts necessary and utterly wasted. Then Jimmy stepped up, kind of, and so did J’onn but I’ve said enough about season three to fill a medium sized swimming pool so I’ll leave it at, they weren’t really mentors in any meaningful way. Now, Kara has stepped up into this role and it’s a testament to just how much she’s grown since season one and certainly since the end of last season.
She’s confident, encouraging and willing to be wrong. When Nia, the new reporter, confronts her about her dismissal of the fashion story as not being meaty enough, Kara accepts being wrong with grace, something that would not have been the case just a couple seasons ago. Although, as we see with J’onn later, this hasn’t really gone away.
Which brings up the time skip and the feeling like we missed something, some bit of Kara’s journey. It’s for the best, since much of that should have been done during the previous season, and it provides us with a fresh starting point. I hope the show keeps this dynamic up and keeps giving us opportunities to have Kara interact with the world and not just Supergirl.
3. This Scenery is So Delicious, I May Have Seconds
The Graves siblings are the most over-the-top thing I’ve seen in Supergirl and that’s saying something. Otis acts like a kid in a candy store and every line is delivered with genuine manic, glee. Mercy is hyper-serious, like she’s just walked out of a DC film. The contrast between these two provided me with endless joy despite how boring they are otherwise but it was also infuriating because, well, they’re not the big bad. They’re just some henchpeople to a villain who is shaping up to be almost as boring as Reign ended up being.
It’s not even the second episode and I can already sense that Liberty(?) is as stock as you can get. Heck, the mask even looks like they took Anarchy’s mask from Arrow and kept it covered in shadow. It’s looking like Lena’s going to be the best villain of the season at this rate and I’m still not sure where she stands on that scale (which is a good thing!)
4. Get Kelly Sue Deconnick & Mark Russell Stat
Supergirl has attempted to tackle real-world issues before, some of which were stated outright while others were veiled in metaphors, typically surrounding aliens. Now it seems that the whole season will be tackling the current political climate and using aliens as the stand in for. . .well, everything. I’m still not convinced that the show’s writing has the subtlety to pull this off well or in any new ways but I’m ready to be proven wrong. So far, we’ve gotten a decent presentation of the forms that hatred can take and how the most mundane people are capable of harboring and acting upon these feelings when organized correctly, a discussion of passing, the question of what the correct response to organized, decentralized hatred like this is, as well as the dangers of complacency and assuming that just because things have been tolerant, that they’ll stay that way.Continued below
It’s a lot, and there’s more, much more, that Supergirl begins to touch on. They don’t go too in depth (yet) but it’s a solid starting point. I just fear they’ll go for the easy answers and the easy presentations. I also hope they address institutional hatred and racism at some point, although I feel that they’ll tackle this with Jimmy’s Guardian plot at some point.
5. DEO? Is That a New Deodorant?
Is the DEO going to remain as it’s always been or will this finally be the season that we get a clear mission statement for them? Will they operate on their own or have something interesting going on or will it continue to be set dressing for Supergirl since she doesn’t have the fortress of solitude? I’m harsh on the DEO but only because they’re a less shady A.R.G.U.S. and have been ripped away from their semi-horror roots in the comics. That’s fine but if this is the department of Extranormal Affairs and they only deal with stuff that involves Supergirl/stuff in National City, that’s pretty shallow.
It’s a shame because Alex as leader is a fantastic idea. She’s already got a sweet haircut and is leading with a much more hands on and intense method but we don’t get to see her do much leading. That’s because she’s fighting with Brainy for most of the episode and while I’m glad they resolved that quickly, I could have gone without this plot. It doesn’t accomplish much and while it’s true to the characters, why is it now that it’s boiling over? I dunno. Regardless, Brainy is still amazing and funny and thank goodness he’s here.
Also, Jensen has been on screen for 15 seconds and I already hate him. I know from promotional materials he’s a new character but I’m still utterly bitter that Vasquez has been written out of the show at this point. She was a huge part of season 1 and, while she was only a bit part in seasons 2 & 3, was the most memorable agent– honestly, the only memorable, non-deceased agent — the show’s had. And now they want to bring in this schlub? Nuh uh. Make me like him but first bring back Vasquez and make the DEO feel like an organization that does things instead of Supergirl’s exposition team and convenient Q.
5.5. Wonder Woman
Lynda Carter as the president of the USA is the best. That’s all.
What did you all think? Was the season premiere a solid one? Let me know in the comments and I’ll see you all again in a week or, if you follow Riverdale, I’ll see you all on Thursday.
Best Lines of the Night:
Phone Voice: “Thought you’d just want an update. It’s not looking good for Olson. Bye.”
Braniac V: “Would you believe it’s an abandoned warehouse?”
Braniac V: “I Miss Winn.”