Welcome back all you Supergirl fans. Remember how last time I was wondering how they’d stretch Reigns story out another three episodes? Wonder no more! For this episode of Supergirl does the unthinkable, the unexpected, the underwhelming! What to know what it was? Read on, true believers and, as always, some spoilers are ahead.
1. The 10 Second Reign of Terror
I’ve gotta hand it to the creators. They knew the natural arc of Reign’s archetype was wrapping up and, due to the unsustainability of the arc this early in the endgame, they cut their losses and kept the fight to, like, a minute and a half at the start of the episode. Instead of having Reign escape or get more powerful via the mystic space rock of nebulous, possibly evil power, she’s taken out and Sam returns. It saves us from having to sit through a lot of tired, overdone villain tropes but it doesn’t answer the question that I keep asking: where do we go from here?
The answer is High Priestess Serene and her evil coven of evilness. Obviously. It’s not like the high priestess was assumed to be a ghost or a construct ala Kara’s mother and was only revealed last episode to be alive and on Nü Krypton. It’s lazy writing and lazy plotting and it frustrates me to no end. This could have been such an interesting dynamic to play with throughout the season! The reveal that the cult is alive and well and controlling Reign for a well-defined reason would have made for a compelling driving force for this plot line and given it a reason to go dormant from time to time.
Instead, we’ve got what we got here. It’s been so long since Reign and her manipulators have had any motivation other than, destroy Earth because they’re an evil cult of destruction, that I’ve totally lost the reason why the world killers were created. I’m not invested in Serene’s travel to Earth because, well, I barely know her and her role this whole season has been to be a shadowy motivating figure for Reign, not the big mastermind behind the whole plot. Yes, she was the impetus for Reign’s transformation but it was never presented as if she had a particular, personal stake in Reign being on Earth.
What I’m trying to say is, Steppenwolf had more on-screen motivation than Serene currently does and if I’m praising Steppenwolf, from Justice League, you’ve got yourself a weak character.
2. Openings that are Endings and Endings that are Openings
The first ten minutes of this episode could easily have been the conclusion to the season. Every beat, every scene, every line of dialogue felt like the end of the season finale, instead of the beginning of the third to last episode. Narratively, that isn’t true as there are plenty of unresolved plot lines but I couldn’t shake the feeling that the episode was winding down just as it was supposed to be winding up.
3. The Shining Grey City of Nü Krypton
Yes, I know the floating asteroid McGuffin has a name but I can’t remember it and Nü Krypton is just so much more fun to say. Or type. Whatever. I noticed this last week but Nü Krypton seems kind of washed out and I can’t figure out why. Why would they mute the colors on Nü Krypton? Wouldn’t they want to make it feel either exactly like Earth or be more vibrant or something? Instead it’s kind of a muddy location and that doesn’t endear me to it. In fact, it makes me want the story to shift away from Nü Krypton so we can get some color back into the show.
It could just be me. It’s a minor gripe but a gripe nonetheless.
4. James Olson, Warrior for Justice and Sociality
Jimmy has been involved in two plots surrounding hot button, social issues these last couple episodes. While it’s great that he’s doing things that are integral to the plot, it is worrying that he is becoming the only focal point for these types of narrative threads. Still, the show handles the topic of gun violence mostly well. Some of the dialogue is beyond forced, Lena Luthor’s especially, as if the writers were just trying to slip in a few of the phrases that get thrown around when discussing the topic of gun violence and gun ownership.Continued below
The most nuanced parts revolved around J’onn and the DEO’s role in enabling the distribution of dangerous, military-style guns. Everything works out in the end, with easy answers, and a lesson, a moral, is taught. Such is the way of social topics in the CW shows. It is an idealized world after all.
The most unfortunate part of this B-plot is that they wrote this, most likely, a year ago and filmed it not long after, thinking it was topical then. It’s still topical now. It’s never stopped being topical. That is the tragedy.
5. Let the Tear Flows
I am mentally preparing myself for Carl Lumbly’s departure from the show. He was a wonderful addition and was not in nearly enough episodes. This week was all about preparing J’onn, and by extension, us, to say goodbye. J’onn’s struggle to accept his father’s decision was despair inducing and for a while, I thought the show was gearing up to having M’yrnn actual lose his memories because J’onn waited too long.
Then I remembered this is Supergirl and I haven’t seen this show have character actions drive real consequences. The only drama and consequences that happen are externally motivated. Which is a real shame. I’m not saying that this was the wrong decision. More so that I shouldn’t have been surprised when they ended this episode’s J’onn plot with a happy-ish note.
And there you have it folks! Next week is the penultimate episode of the season! I wonder what it will entail. Probably the evil coven of evilness coming to Earth and doing evil things for evil sake. Maybe it will surprise me. Either way, if M’yrnn dies next episode I will be crying.
OH! One more thing. Reign actually looks threatening and scary now that her stupid mask is gone. Why didn’t they do this from the start? It would’ve saved them a lot of hassle. See you in seven!