This Krypton review contains spoilers.
Krypton Season 2 Episode 4
“Danger Close” is an appropriate title for this week’s Krypton because it feels like the penultimate episode of the season considering all the threads coming together – and yet it’s not even the halfway point.
Seg and Lyta reunite, have sex and share a touching moment, before Lyta sells him out to Zod. Except is it really Lyta since Seg finds out she’s been re-programmed by her son? And the same almost happens to Seg, except Brainiac is still in Seg’s head. Meanwhile, after having a sentimental bro-down with Seg, Adam is hanging out with Kem – who freed Dev, when he refused to kill civilians (on Lyta’s orders). Dev’s story reveals to Jayna that her daughter is a monster now (thanks, Dru), and she’s off to fight Zod, and talk Lyta down.
Adam tells Val he may have broken the universe. Jax-Ur says “No! No!” a lot as she learns Zod has been playing her all along (goodbye, Wegthor ground support), and then her genocidal Codex Smart Weapon is shut down by Val, and stolen by Nyssa (who is presumably taking it to Zod). Lyta is now on Wegthor (hey there, Adam and Kem). Oh, then Seg and Zod have an incredibly scene on the level of Kal-El and Zod.
And Seg gets a shave (so long, Seg’s Phantom Zone beard).
Whoa, that’s a lot.
I must admit, although I was concerned the action on Krypton/Wegthor was moving a bit slow, and not as engaging compared to the Seg/Adam/Lobo antics on Colu, this episode injected a healthy dose of momentum into the season. And I confess to loving when an ensemble show gets the band back together, and all of our main characters are in similar orbits.
I have said before that Adam (because of the Shaun Sipos’ performance, and the fact the writers clearly love writing for him) is a character you can point in the direction of any other character, and he’ll click. The hug between Adam and Seg before they depart is on the level of Finn and Poe in Star Wars. These are two guys who crack wise, and crack heads, but love each other, and it’s a great friendship that has been nurtured. But then we have Kem (Rasmus Hardiker) back in the mix, and it’s such a joy to have him. Without being a clone of Adam, Kem is another whip-smart character who is a perfect wingman.
Together, Kem and Adam are energetic. Smart Ass 1 and Smart Ass 2 get to share a similar sense of humor as they march towards certain death (following the awful pep talk of “Move fast, and don’t die”).
Also, thanks to the writers for the “Isn’t she a little short to be a Sagitari?” nod to Star Wars as a capper to a sexy, flirtatious scene between Seg and Lyta – a memory that reveals Brainiac is still hanging out, and being a creepy voyeur within Seg’s consciousness.
By far, the best of the bunch this week comes from the Seg/Zod interactions. Seg is not Superman, but he has evolved from reluctant hero to one who maintains hope, and is optimistic. As an audience, we had to watch Seg get to this point (otherwise it would have been a yawn to see him start out looking too much like his Big Blue Boy Scout grandson). Now that he is at this heroic moment, he very much resembles what Kal-El will be like.
And Zod sees it too. For all his talk that “I chose to believe in you” to Seg, all along he has had to work to prevent Seg from becoming the El that would eventually lead to his greatest foe.
Certainly Zod must wonder how things could have been had he convinced Superman to listen to his way of thinking, and his goals to create a “better” future. I believe Zod when he says he wished Seg would come to love him, because he needs to be understood, and loved by his father (and this family dynamic adds an interesting resonance to his relationship with Superman since Zod would see so much of his father in him, and would crave that connection with his enemy/nephew).
But Zod can’t risk the chance. He knows how this will all play out with the El family line. And he is a creature who seeks to control all things, even love – to the point of re-programming his mother, which I believe he didn’t relish doing.
All of this leads to an incredible scene. Seg is relatively pure, and Zod is loaded down with baggage. Seg wants to give Zod, his son, the opportunity to change, and become a better man (though he is still not familiar with all the evil the general has committed). But Zod is essentially having a conversation with three people – Superman, the father from his own past, and this current version of his father.
This plays out wonderfully between Colin Salmon and Cameron Cuffe, each holding their own in this conversational showdown.
Salmon’s expressions here are masterful. When Seg tells him he killed Brainiac, his eyes look crazed, impressed, and skeptical (that Kal’s grandfather would commit murder) all at once. When Seg tells him he can be the best of both houses, Zod looks almost touched by his father’s word, and then evil because, well, there’s no room for error – so Seg has to be mind-wiped.
For the Seg/Zod scenes alone, this episode earns its grade.