Welcome back all you Supergirl fans! I hope you had a restful week off from the show that somehow manages to bore & frustrate me in equal measure. I spent my time cooling down from the quite large rant I had last time and preparing myself for the worst. Thankfully, it was only half as bad as I thought it’d be.
Let’s get to the thoughts, shall we? And as always, spoilers ahead.
1. Space Journey II: The Yawn of Cone
Leviathan might be the biggest disappointment of the whole season, and considering my burning, raging hatred over the handling of Lena’s heel turn, that feeling shocks me. But it’s true! Every time Rama Khan and Alexandra Rojas were on screen, my finger twitched above the fast forward button. It’s just so deeply uninteresting. The closest thing to a not 174% predictable set of events and dialog choices is in Rojas’ lamentations over the loss of Russel but even that rings hollow.
We knew Russell in the context of being dead, of being Robocop, and then in a flashback episode that, well, I pointed out my issues with it here, but no other way. Couple that with the inconsistent representation of Rojas and you’ve got a recipe for me not caring about her “cathartic moment.” More than that, however, was Rama Khan and Green Dress Lady whose name still hasn’t been mentioned. I don’t know how Supergirl managed to suck all mystique and threat out of Leviathan but they did it. They boiled it down to a bunch of petulant, smug centuries old children fighting over who gets to kill the humans. . .and then made them speak lines that were old hat when the dinosaurs roamed the Earth.
Maybe this mysterious “she” will be a better villain but I ain’t holding my breath.
2. Will the Real HOPE Please Stand Up?
Uh, so, did I miss something? Didn’t HOPE completely erase and rewrite over Eve? Wasn’t that a thing that happened? Where is this concern for Eve coming from, Lena? Are you that far gone that you don’t see literally writing over a person to replace them as something villains do? I get it, she sees herself as right in her eyes. But there’s no reflexivity, no reflective thought on what she’s doing. No conflict. I cannot believe that Lena Luthor would do these things without the kinds of fretting and self-convincing that she had last season and before.
We get a bit of that struggle this week as she is forced to finally confront Kara/Supergirl as well as the possibility of losing HOPE, which makes me question whether or not she is afraid of losing her creation or the only friend she has left, a position she probably doesn’t realize is pretty similar to the one that let her become this jaded in the first place. Bah! This week handled things a little better but damn do I wish they wrote Lena with half the smarts and self-awareness they say she has. Or maybe she never had this self-awareness and I’m projecting that. It’s possible and if I’m wrong, then I’m wrong. I’ll still be frustrated either way because it is a manufactured state that was telegraphed in the sloppiest ways.
Also, does this show not know the difference between lies and secrets? Because the two are very different and while one can feel like the other, you’d think someone, anyone would have the insight into the realities of the situation to put that together
3. I’m Sorry You Felt That My Punching You in the Face Was Aggressive
Supergirl is a garbage apologizer and I don’t think the writing team knows how to write her as being anything but pretty self-centered. Not arrogant, not uncompassionate but so much of what she says, does and frets about is on her. It was her secret that drove Lena to these ends. It was her being a bad friend that drove Lena away. It was HER, HER, HER. Much as it had its flaws, Lena’s response was perfect: this was never about you. It’s true and I don’t think Supergirl has ever really taken her to task about that.Continued below
It’s a character flaw that crops up in her “I know best” attitude. Her attempts at empathy, while on the whole important and well handled, often veer into centering the problems on her without giving space for others. . .but the show never treats it as such. Even now, it isn’t handled that way and instead we’re supposed to side with Kara. I think Alex said it best when she basically told Kara point blank: Lena’s been pretty shitty to you for the past two years and her actions tell a very different story than the one you’re constructing and it is her actions that matter.
She said what I’ve been saying for a good while, that Lena has no ground to stand on for feeling betrayed considering all the shit she kept from Kara/Supergirl. Actually, this whole episode should have been a “Alex was right” parade. . .except for the fact that she was totally wrong about Ma’alefa’ak and rushed to judge Lena in a fair but uncharitable manner. Eh, could be worse. You could have completely forgotten about a plot point from the previous episode.
4. I’ll Have a Mocha Frappuchino and Three Zooms to Go Please
Did. . .did Brainy magically heal after last episode’s incident with his broken inhibitor? I feel like I missed something and no one acknowledged his weird antic from then. Considering this is a direct follow-up, you’d think that would be important but nope! Guess we can chalk that up to, uh, I dunno. . .Crisis? Let’s go with that.
5. Too Much, Way Too Fucking Much
This season has been the complete opposite of the last one: unfocused, poorly scripted, and so utterly boring that two, TWO Earth threatening apocalypses that aren’t even Crisis couldn’t make it an interesting week, instead feeling bloated and rushed, like they needed to, once again, wipe the slate clean before the midseason finale and crossover. Everything is wrapped up in a nice neat bow: Lena gets away, HOPE is in jail, Ma’alefa’ak gets the start of his redemption, the space car returns, Rojas is safe, kinda, and Leviathan’s grand plans are. . .well, they’re a-coming I guess.
I dunno y’all. It’s been eight episodes but it feels like 15 and not in any good way. They’re trying to do way too much and it’s to the detriment of them all. Pick one, hell, pick two, and develop them more. Leviathan was such a great set-up with Eve. Why did she have to get punted off to the side? To give Lena someone to talk to that wasn’t a CGI tube? To show that she has morals even though she really only has one and that’s dubious at best?
Whatever the case, it’s been a hell of a season thus far and, really, I just want “Crisis” to arrive so I can maybe review a good episode of this show again.
5.5. Crisis Teaser
I’m a few episodes behind on Batwoman, so I’m not sure if this is an Elseworlds teaser situation where they’re all the same, but seeing Nash Wells was a nice way of tying in the Crisis in a different way than just with J’onn and Mar Novu. Now if only Kara had been brought in on it too. . .
Oh, and I had to show this image because oh man, did it crack me up. Apologies, friends, for my juvenile humor.
That about does it for now! How far off my rocker am I? Or did I find that one hot take that’s just kinda lukewarm? Let me know in the comments and join the five DCW reviewers next week as we partake in Part One of “Crisis on Infinite Earths,” and then I’ll see you all again in January for the return of the season. . .unless they somehow have episodes after Crisis which I highly doubt.
Best (paraphrased) Line of the Night:
Alex: “Between Lena and Rama Khan gearing up for Pompeii 2.0, I’d like to avoid a third disaster.”