Supergirl Season 2, Episode 18 Review: Ace Reporter

Lena chooses Supergirl over her ex-boyfriend in a character-centric episode of Supergirl.

This Supergirl review contains spoilers.

Supergirl Season 2, Episode 18

Now, that is how you do a filler episode. Aside from Kara’s return to CatCo as a reporter, “Ace Reporter” wasn’t a particularly important episode when it comes to the larger plot threads of Season 2. But what it lacked in moving the larger storylines along, it more than made up for in terms of character moments for Lena Luthor. As always, Supergirl is at its best when it is servicing the female relationships on this show.

Lena Luthor can’t catch a break. First of all, she’s a Luthor, which may come with its fair share of resources, sure, but might not be worth it when you also take into account the drama and emotional abuse that also seems to be a requisite part of being in this family. Second of all, her ex-boyfriend ended up being nanobot-infected serial killer. Sure, he wasn’t aware of what he was doing, but that arguably only made it more difficult when Lena had to choose between killing Jack (played by iZombie’s Rahul Kohli) and letting Supergirl die a slow, tortorous death-by-nanobot. Lena chose Supergirl.

It’s moments like these that I wish Lena were in the know about Supergirl’s true identity. (Who know? Maybe she is. Sercretly.) It was still moving to know that Lena would choose Supergirl over Jack, but it would have felt a bit more honest, perhaps, if she were choosing Kara over Jack. After all, Kara is the one who she goes to when she need a friend to support her and Kara is the one who shows up to give Lena flowers and comfort her when Jack is dead. Kara promises Lena that she will always be here for her, which is not only a touching scene, but an oddly foreshadow-y one. I’m not sure if I believe that Lena is secretly evil right now, but I kind of wonder if she has the capacity to be. To be fair, Lena wonders this, too, telling Kara that she is afraid that, once she can feel something again, she will be afraid of the kind of person she has become.

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Supergirl surprised me when it came to the last minute bait-and-switch with Jack. It wasn’t the Evil Ex trope. He was being controlled by the money-desperate CFO. That was an unexpected, original twist. I hope Supergirl does something similar with its Lena storyline. Part of me wants Lena to be a proper Luthor antagonist to Supergirl. Another part of me wants that to be complicated or all-out subverted by this show that prioritizes female friendship and support above all else. We’ll have to wait and see. For now, #SuperCorp is alive and well, people.

Um, Jimmy & Winn are also friends.

I wanted to love the Jimmy & Winn stuff in this episode, but it just came off feeling like a cheap knockoff of the Lena/Kara storyline that made up the A Plot. Supergirl’s inability to figure out something to do with James now that he isn’t Kara’s love interest continues to be problematic in Season 2. It’s one of the only continuing weak spots of this otherwise great season. Winn’s relationship with Lyra isn’t going to win any Best Plotline Awards, but at least its serviceable. James feels like he belongs on a completely different show (probably Arrow) and it was particularly obvious in an episode like this, which relied so much on character moments. Do better, Supergirl.

Kara is back at CatCo.

I love how much Supergirl loves glorifying journalism. You can tell that the show is just itching to be relevant and socially progressive, but that only so much politicizing fits within the structures of its plot. The purpose and important of journalism is one of the things it can do, and it owns that slightly pedantic theme.

In “Ace Reporter,” we saw Kara doing her best to get to the bottom of the BioMax miracle development. When Lena asks Kara to support her when she goes to see her ex’s presentation, Kara can’t help but be a reporter. It’s not because she wants the glory or the paycheck. It’s because she wants the truth and she wants other people to know it, too.

Ultimately, it that commitment to the truth that Snapper Carr respoonds to. In some ways, Snapper pisses me off as a character. He’s funny and he’s consistent, but he’s also kind of an unnecessarily cruel jerk in the ways that he wields his power. He’s a throwback to the kind of newspaper editor that I don’t think pop culture needs to be supporting anymore. 

That being said, his curmedgeonly attitude is a perfect thematic counterpoint to Kara’s sunny optimism. And the fact that they ultimately see eye-to-eye about a lot of things proves that you don’t need to be a ray of sunshine like Kara to want to do good in the world. Morality comes in all shapes and sizes. Sometimes, it looks like Snapper Carr.

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Memorable quotes.

“Big unemployed is not fun anymore.” — Kara

“So, what’s your Krytponite?” Is Lena trolling Kara? Discuss.

“Kara Davers with…”

“This just feels like stalking.” “No, it’s journalism.” “OK, very creepy jurnalism.” Mon-El wasn’t in this episode much, but when he was, it was an absolute delight. I am always a fan of Mike showing up on the scene and the way that Mon-El subtly encourages Kara’s journalism is much-needed after all of the undermining Mon-El has done in their superhero-ing relationship.

“Listen, I feel a connection to you, like a man-nection, and we should hang out.” — “Mike”

“I’m going to powder my nose. Do not be here when I get back.” — Lyra

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“It’s not the reporter that matters. It’s the truth that matters.” — Kara

“I wouldn;t know. I’ve never stood behind a man.” — Lena

“Did I mention that I am a black belt?” “Did I mntion that I was a Luthor?”

“You came to see me. That’s more than enough.” These two are so in love.

“I think when I feel things again, I’m gonna feel very, very afraid about the person I am going to be.” — Lena

“Do you really want to help people?”  “Most days.” I love Lyra’s honesty.

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“What’s this I hear about a cat stuck up a tree? I’m starving.” This made me laugh out loud.

“Don’t start a food truck.” But I would watch the spinoff about Supergirl starting a food truck. Superfood?

“My name is Rhea. I have a business propositin for you.” Teri Hatcher is back and she’s about to sink her evil claws into Lena Luthor. I can’t wait.