Things are heating up for Supergirl, and it’s not just with her evil twin Bizarro (Hope Lauren). This week we were thrown more than a few curveballs and I’m feeling like the unrequited love connections may never be realized. Alas, the writers seem intent upon keeping us guessing all the way to the season finale.
The show opens with Maxwell Lord (Peter Facinelli) initiating his dastardly genetic experiment with the comatose girl. He has created some kind of device that combines Supergirl’s DNA with a human host and in the classic Frankenstein style, he excitedly remarks “She’s alive!” Instead of piecing together parts of cadavers, though, Maxwell has harvested Kara’s (Melissa Benoist) genetic code from Red Tornado’s broken arm. Remember when Alex (Chyler Leigh) brought the arm as a peace offering to Max? Our evil entrepreneur took full advantage of the gift to engineer Supergirl’s downfall. Mary Shelley would be so proud.
Now, in a moment of complete nerdiness and obscure references, Maxwell Lord’s very next line is “Death is the veil through which those who live call life.” This is a quote from Percy Bysshe Shelly, Mary Shelley’s poet husband, and comes from a play he wrote called Prometheus Unbound. The subject matter of that play revolves around the idea of an anti-hero rising to power, the regeneration of mankind and new definitions of good and evil. References are woven throughout the show and I just know there are English Lit fans out there who fangirling themselves silly.
When Bizarro finally gets out of the lab to stretch her legs, we discover that she has Supergirl’s abilities kind of. She demonstrates her super strength buy throwing a truck into a mountain, but she also has some anomalies. Instead of freezing breath and heat vision, Bizarro has fire breath and cold vision, powers that are equal and opposite to our heroine. And then there’s the language issue. As Supergirl puts it, Bizarro talks like Cookie Monster. Apparently the brain damage was not completely reversed and her verbal skills are pretty basic.
One of the shockers for the evening was that this anti-Supergirl may not be the only one. Winn (Jeremy Jordan) looks into the records for the local hospitals and discovers that numerous Jane Does with severe head injuries were taken to a private facility, named Prometheus Genetics. Maxwell Lord is the owner and he apparently has 7 girls in all. While Kara undoubtedly wanted children one day, this probably wasn’t what she had in mind. Alex confronts Maxwell on his actions and the two circle each other like prize fighters. Up until now we’ve seen the suave, sophisticated cad that Maxwell usually portrays, but there’s a darker, more sinister side that begins to appear.
Maxwell sends Bizarro out three more times in an effort to kill Kara. Despite his nasty mind games to get his superminion to bend to his will, I spent most of the episode feeling like she was obviously no match for Supergirl. So what gives? Maybe Maxwell is just testing this version of his anti-hero. I could see how he might need to beta test a few before deciding to launch an all out attack. But that is a logical plan and Max seems caught in his own mania. I got the sense from watching the show that Max really thought this would work.
Hank and Alex attempt to take out Bizarro with Kryptonite bullets but the element has the opposite affect on her. Just as her powers are oppositional to Supergirl’s, so too are her susceptibilities. Kryptonite causes Bizarro’s strength to increase rather than decrease so Hank and Alex whip up a modified version of the element and, once Bizarro is hit with it, the element finally weakens her enough to allow capture. Once Bizarro is finally at the DEO, we see that her humanity and compassion finally override Max’s brainwashing. Perhaps that compassion was the real reason Max’s plan didn’t work. His selfishness blinds him to the emotions of others and he underestimated how strong those basic instincts are.
Speaking of things that are bizarro, Kara and Cat Grant’s relationship goes on a rollercoaster ride in this episode. At the top of the show, Cat arrives to work and Kara has forgotten her boss’ daily dose of caffeine. However, Cat arrives with her own cup – and one for Kara. This act of kindness feels forced and uncomfortable for both sides. Then Cat listens to Kara and is patient with her during the workday. We soon see that Cat is just trying to play nice in the hopes that her estranged son, Adam, will stick around longer.
Sadly for our real life spouses, Kara and Adam call it quits. Or, rather, Kara breaks up with him after rushing out of one date early and being kidnapped from the second. Apparently Kara was Adam’s only tie to National City and he decides to head home. Cat reacts by telling Kara that their relationship needs to be strictly professional from then on and all traces of “Nice Cat” disappear. The ups and downs between these two women was tough to watch since we seemed to be on a trajectory toward some kind of understanding or mutual respect. But Cat is obviously hurt by her son’s priorities and the only person she can take her frustrations out on is Kara.
I’ve been stuck in the friend zone for so long that I’m just thinking about buying some investment property here. -Winn
As for our love triangle between Winn, Kara and James, it seems the writers want to bring us back to square one. When Lucy (Jenna Dewan Tatum) arrived, it appeared that the path was clear for a Winn/Kara romance to blossom. But with Kara’s unwillingness to address her feelings, if she has any, for Winn, and Winn’s open expression of his love for Kara, the two are still at an impasse. Adam doesn’t help and then Winn encourages James (Mehcad Brooks) to pursue a relationship with Kara. What is Winn doing?
I assume that Winn just wants to be first on Kara’s mind. It’s a reasonable desire and if I had to guess, I’d say that Kara is going to date her way through a few more eligible gentlemen before she finally wakes up. I still don’t understand her issue with dating Winn, but maybe there’s a backstory the writers haven’t yet revealed. I certainly hope she discovers that the best guy for her has been beside her all along.
Alex ends up waging her own war against Maxwell Lord. She was the first to suspect that he knew of her and Kara’s relationship, and when Kara was kidnapped on her date, Alex realized that Maxwell would be a threat to everyone in their family. In a bold move, Alex captures and puts Max in a holding cell at the DEO. Hank (David Harewood) is incredulous at her move; the DEO has no authority to hold human prisoners and Max’s notoriety is going to be an issue. Alex defends herself claiming that Max is a threat to their operations and, most importantly, he is a threat to her family.
Where do we go from here? Well, obviously Maxwell Lord is in jail at the DEO and that can’t last long. The sinister billionaire likes to plan ahead and I can easily see that he has some kind of leverage that will result in his release. What about his threat to reveal Supergirl’s identity? Or that of the DEO’s? Alex and Hank will have to find a way to reign him in and keep everyone’s secrets under wraps.
Then there’s the issue of the other missing women. Are there other super humans waiting to battle Supergirl? Perhaps Maxwell has other plans for them. Either way, if we don’t see the DEO wrap up this issue then they may resurface in another story line later in the show.
Then there is the weird issue of who is dating whom has me perplexed. I’m glad the writers haven’t made the Winn/Kara romance an easy gambit, but goodness the twists and turns are giving me motion sickness. The office is going to be a very chilly place if James dumps Lucy and asks Kara out. There would certainly be an epic cat fight between the two women.
Finally let’s not forget the giant spider creature hanging out in Kara’s apartment. In the last few seconds of the show we see that Kara has arrived home and notices a sticky plant like structure on her living room table. She hears a sound and the creature attacks her. Talk about a bad day! First she breaks up with a cute guy that throws her relationship with her boss back to the stone age, her identity and her family are in danger and now she’s attacked by an eight legged monster before she can even get her sweatpants on. It’s a wonderful mess and I can’t wait to see where the show takes us next week.
Watch on CBS Monday nights at 8:00/7:00c
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