J'onn Jonzz and Supergirl. Photo from CBS.

Supergirl Ep 119 & 120 Review: Who Is In The Pod?

By: Kelsey Dodge
CBS finale Myriad Supergirl

The title to this review should really be “Why I Think This Finale Was Terrible But I Still Want To Watch Season 2,” but I figured it was too long. I don’t know, I have such mixed feelings about the end to this maiden season of ‘Supergirl’ that I’m torn between the parts that I loved, the parts that made me laugh and parts that were so off the wall that it was hard to watch. The last two episodes of ‘Supergirl’ were aired separately but I refused to watch ‘Myriad’ until I could view it back to back with ‘Better Angels.’ I did this because (a) the writers have been so good at building suspense that I knew I needed to see them together, and (b) I got a 2 hour finale of my own design. Still . . . . I finished episode 20 feeling like I’d just been on a storyline roller coaster and was completely confused about what I’d just watched.

Non (Chris Vance) looks over his kingdom. Photo by CBS.

Non (Chris Vance) looks over his kingdom. Photo by CBS.

‘Myriad’ picks up with all of National City under Non’s mind control. Myriad’s true purpose was to harness the collective consciousness of the planet so we could all work toward ending world hunger and global climate change. Except to do so everyone would have to lose their identities and become mindless drones. Chris Vance might be a good looking man, but I still can’t see myself signing up for his plan. I did like that his intentions were noble enough that you almost wanted to root for the bad guys, but the complete lack of freedom would prevent most people from joining his cause.

There were disturbing parallels to current events concerning political deadlock and social injustice that I think many viewers could identify with. We all want to improve the world around us, but so many of the decision makers whom we give authority to waste our time and precious resources.  Non certainly takes the cake for his twisted methodology on saving Earth, but are his ideas so foreign? We live in a world that seeks to suppress ideas and opinions that differ from our own so maybe mind control isn’t far off. Group think and the ever influential ‘popular opinion’ is in many ways a form of mental leashing.

Indigo and Non plot to destroy Earth. Photo by CBS.

Indigo and Non plot to destroy Earth. Photo by CBS.

I did enjoy how Indigo was used as a foil for Non; she manipulated her lover with exacting skill. As a fan of conspiracy theories, Indigo illustrated the back room political players so popular in political intrigue, but who we never actually see. For all of National City, it appeared that Non held all the power when in reality, Indigo was running the show. She encouraged Non to kill Kara and then ensured Myriad would kill the human population when their plans for enslavement go awry.

The Good

There were some really well written parts to the last two episodes and I want to acknowledge what I thought worked.

  1. Alex and Hank as mother and son. I didn’t catch on right away when the bus was stopped and the highway patrol was searching for Alex and Hank, but as the trooper got closer and the blonde woman reached in her bag for her gun I suddenly realized who they were. We’ve only seen Hank/J’onn as an adult but why couldn’t he assume the form of a child? It was a genius disguise.

    Eliza Danvers. Photo by CBS.

    Eliza Danvers. Photo by CBS.

  2. Eliza Danver’s reaction to Hank. We’ve only seen Eliza a few times in the course of the season but the last two episodes finally brought her into the main story line. Her reaction to seeing Hank Henshaw, whom she associated with her husband’s death was visceral and compelling. This was a great scene and I felt that it added to the overall story well. When Eliza then sits Hank down and asks him questions about his transformative abilities I had a little nerd moment and giggled in delight.
  3. Cat Grant’s character development. Hasn’t Cat been the most difficult character to love? She was the least likable person when this season started but the writers did an exemplary job of unveiling her motivations over the last 20 episodes and letting her personality grow. I loved that Cat helped Supergirl find a non lethal way to save National City, and her scene at the end where Kara thinks she’s getting fired, but Cat really gives her a promotion was rousing. And of course, when Cat finally pronounces Kara’s name correctly, it was a lovely, squishy, emotional moment for anyone who has yelled at their television to correct her pronunciation.
  4. The battle between Alex and Kara. I absolutely bought the idea that Non would use Alex as a weapon to destroy Kara. That, more than anything else his character did in this episode seemed real and spot on. I was so frustrated that he had threatened to kill Supergirl after Astra’s death and then he chickened out in ‘Myriad’.  The fighting between beloved sisters was hard to watch, but it was a deliciously evil plan.
  5. J’onn tears Indigo apart. This was . . . graphic, though thankfully devoid of squirting blood and flailing entrails. It was a nasty way to destroy someone, but Indigo hasn’t lacks any compassion toward others so I was pleased to wave good bye to her character. Still, I’m not sure I grasp the logic about how J’onn’s dismemberment of her human form was more deadly that when Supergirl blew her apart in ‘Solititude.’

 

Cat: This is your end of ‘Working Girl’ moment. And if you take advantage of it? I really believe that you can change the world.

Kara: Miss Grant? The end of working girl always makes me cry

Cat: Oh, Me too.

The Bad

I almost don’t want to write this section. If you’ve seen my other reviews, then you know how much I’ve come to love ‘Supergirl,’  but there were so many elements of these last two episodes that just didn’t work for me.

  1. It all starts with Lucy letting out Maxima, an alien at the DEO. What does this scene add to the story line? Not much. I don’t buy that Non cares about the alien prisoners at the DEO nor does he need to let them out at this particular moment. If they aren’t affected by the Myriad machine, then he has to just hope they play along? That kind of assumption is bad planning in my opinion.
  2. Kara arrives at the DEO just in time to prevent the release of the aliens, and Lucy shoots her with Kryptonite bullets. Why would DEO staff have clips of kryptonite bullets at the ready? Hank never did; he always carried real bullets. And if these agents are now under mind control, wouldn’t Non make sure they weren’t carrying something that could kill him?
  3. Superman succumbs to Myriad. Nope, you can’t sell me on this one either. Through Maxwell’s dialogue the writers try to argue that being raised on Earth somehow changed the genetic construct of Superman. It is nature versus nurture but it sounds bogus. I get that they are avoiding bringing in Kara’s cousin but this was a stretch for me.
  4. Maxwell Lord is always one step ahead of everyone. For most of the series, the story lines unfold in an organic manner. Kara, Alex and Hank investigate something strange and clues lead them to a final conclusion. Unfortunately the writers abandoned this style and Max drives a lot of the plot line in the finale. He’s one step ahead of everyone with his ion inhibiting devices, his singular understanding of how Myriad is being transmitted and then he tells everyone they’re going to die. I didn’t like it, it felt forced and I hope season 2 goes back to the old method of story telling.
  5. Hope triumphs evil. Yes, I agree with the premise; I want good to triumph evil. But stopping an alien mind control device by telling people to fight back? Eh. It’s a tired story line. It wasn’t new, or even a new twist on an old story. I was completely let down by the lack of intensity. I will say that the actors did an incredible job delivering their lines, and I loved the way the director filmed some of the scenes as he cut back and forth between the mindless masses and our heroine.
  6. Fort Rozz wasn’t on the DEO’s radar. Really? An agency tasked with hunting down aliens on Earth and they didn’t monitor who what sniffing around Fort Rozz??? On my list of “Things That Don’t Make Sense” this one is at the top. I’m fine with the DEO being unaware of Project Cadmus, but not with their blindness to a giant alien prison hiding in Nevada.

    Alex saves Kara with her own spaceship. Photo by CBS.

    Alex saves Kara with her own spaceship. Photo by CBS.

  7. Kara can’t fly into space. I recall that Superman was able to fly into space; in fact I have a comic book that talks about him doing so. So why can’t Supergirl? Maybe the writers decided that this wasn’t a plausible feature for a Kryptonian but then why was Kal-El unavailable to help in ‘Myriad’ because he was ‘off planet?’
  8. Kara destroys Non with her heat vision. Is this really the only way to destroy a fellow Kryptonian? Well, other than a Kryptonite laden weapon from the DEO. This part of the story was a major let down for me. Maybe I’m expecting too much but I prefer characters who have more than one shortcoming. Part of what makes heroines and villains compelling is the juxtaposition between their imperfections and their strengths.

“Time to grow up and put on the big girl cape.” – Maxwell Lord

Despite the missteps in this finale, I’m excited that CBS renewed this series. There are so many wonderful story lines to explore that I look forward to the second season. We still don’t know the full back story between Maxwell and Cat and I’d like to know more about their odd love/hate relationship. I’m also rooting for a relationship between Max and Alex, which may be in the works. Did you see Max reach for Alex’s hand when they all thought they were going to die? It made my shipper heart very happy.

James and Kara kiss. Photo by CBS.

James and Kara kiss. Photo by CBS.

When General Lane reinstated J’onn as head of the DEO I immediately wondered how Lucy would respond. She was a reluctant director anyway, but it appears that she and J’onn will be working together. Then there’s the budding relationship between Kara and James, Kara’s new promotion and who she’ll find to be Ms. Grant’s new assistant. Project Cadmus is still unresolved and hopes are high that Jeremiah Danvers is still alive and able to come home. Lastly, the finale ended with a Kryptonian pod crashing on Earth and Kara’s shocked expression. Did she recognize the occupant? Who could it be? With so many directions to take the story, I can’t for next season’s premiere in November of 2016.

 


Season 2 starts in November 2016 on CBS

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