This Supergirl review contains spoilers.
Supergirl Season 3 Episode 16
Supergirl has really hit their stride with Winn’s character this season. Even though he was sidelined with a mysterious illness for most of the episode, he still managed to be the emotional core of the episode, with the writing doing a great job of tying in the one-off episode with his mom, and finding some reasonable explanation for why a guy that smart lives in the shadow of everyone around him.
It was great to see that Winn’s most intense moment was with James. It’s wonderful to see how much more interesting their dynamic is now than it was in season 1, where they were simply pitted against each other as they viewed for Kara’s affection, or in season 2 when they talked almost exclusively about their Kara-less love lives. The Guardian storyline didn’t always work, but it did provide the space for these two to grow closer. Their bedside talk was so moving that they actually had me worried Winn might not make it, if only for a second.
J’onn and Alex continued with their great character moments, and which also allowed us to feel the presence of M’yrnn, even if we didn’t see him. Whatever happens to the elder J’onzz, J’onn is going to need his surrogate daughter Alex to help him get through it.
The best parts of this episode were the ones involving character work and the dueling philosophies on how to be a hero. The science behind Sam/Reign is a lot less enticing, particularly when it’s used to isolate Sam and Lena from everyone else on the show. Luckily, it seems as though this episode has wrapped that up.
Lena (mostly) figures out what’s going on with Sam and the other world killers, though it’s unclear if Lena even realizes Sam is connected to the others. Watching Sam and Reign confront each other directly was long overdue, and he struggle helped put Grace’s betrayal into perspective. While the lack of glowing eyes suggests that Grace herself bought into the evil plan, could she simply have given herself over, as reign hoped Sam would do? The latter leaves the door open for Grace to be saved, as she seemed to be when she heard the words, “do no harm.”
At a certain point, the DEO folks are going to have to start limiting what they share with Brainy and Imra. It’s a bit odd that they continued to share absolutely everything with them, even after Kara found out that Imra used that information to go behind her back. Perhaps kicking them out will finally force the Mon-El/Imra blow-up that’s been brewing since he found out she lied to him. I’m not interested in a love triangle for Kara, but that’s a major lie for a marriage to withstand.
Brainy, on the other hand, could use a little understanding. The writers continue to interpret “smart” as “mean,” though at least Winn provides an excellent (if only slightly above average) foil. Making Brainy look more human is a nice way for him to connect better with the audience and the other characters, and it likely makes the actor happy. But eventually he’s going to need to stop hiding behind math and knowledge and pick a side.
Things picked up at the end of the episode, when Imra, Mon-El, J’onn and Supergirl followed the trail of the world killers right to L Corp. I’m looking forward to the fallout from Lena lying to Supergirl (with all kinds of dramatic irony due to the increasingly hard to believe fact that Kara is lying about something even bigger), and the gang finally all working together to rescue Sam and save the world. Sam and Ruby and then Sam and Lena have been off on their own show for far too long. This is the kind of thing that makes 22 episodes feel like a relic rather than a luxury.
While Imra and Kara have reached a new level of closeness and understanding, they still haven’t resolved their fundamental disagreement about how best to handle the world killers. Even more troubling, Mon-El did not share in any of that resolution, so he’s likely to still be feeling betrayed by his wife as well as his best friend.