written by Dayna Abel
SPOILER WARNINGS ARE IN EFFECT
KARA: “I don’t think you get that I gave my heart to a lying jackass who was unaware of his behavior towards me, who disrespected me at every turn, and now is this reformed person who…what? He wants to reminisce about the good times?”
Jeez, Supergirl writers, just @ me next time.
Thank Beebo, there is finally a reckoning between Kara and Mon-El. Nearly my every complaint was addressed in this episode, and while almost any character could have said it, it meant the most coming from Kara herself. I honestly don’t know what the hell they were thinking in Season Two, but Season Three has gone out of its way to reintroduce Mon-El in a way they wouldn’t have had to if they’d just gone this route in the first place. In a way, it almost makes it even harder to watch Season Two’s Mon-El, knowing this is what we could have had all along. I can actually feel okay about Mon-El this season. Given that I wanted to throw him into a vat of molten lead last year, that’s a hell of an accomplishment.
With that out of the way, let’s take my heart and rip it in twain, shall we? David Harewood, Carl Lumbly and Odette Annable wrecked me this episode. The parallels between Sam and M’yrnn here are obvious: both of them are fighting something that’s completely out of their control. Sam is shown beyond a shadow of a doubt that she is Reign, and she’s horrified that “she” is hurting and killing others, not to mention being something other than human. “All those people..!” she cries when she finally sees the evidence for herself. Kudos here to Lena Luthor for immediately comforting Sam. Lena knows evil, and Sam’s not evil. “It wasn’t your fault,” she insists, even though Sam isn’t having it. She blames herself for Reign’s actions and vehemently tells Lena to keep Ruby far away from her until they find a way to cure her of being Reign.
Equally as tragic are the consequences of M’yrnn’s progressive dementia. His telepathic powers are so strong that his fear and anger over his disease are bleeding out across the entire DEO, affecting everyone within range. Even J’onn can’t shield them from his own father. It’s absolutely the most heartbreaking thing to watch when J’onn realizes he is going to have to hurt his father to help him. Alex relates a story about her own grandmother’s experience with Alzheimer’s, and Kara tells J’onn “My Uncle Jor-El used to say ‘The son becomes the father, and the father becomes the son’.”
This hit me on a personal level. My own father was his father’s caretaker as my grandpa’s physical and mental health was failing. Papa would eventually forget people’s names, forget who his own son was. To this day I’m not sure if he even knew I was there the day before he died. I can’t imagine the pain of knowing that’s a thing that will absolutely happen to you, of M’yrnn feeling that he’s going to be a burden on J’onn for the rest of his life.
The worst of it was J’onn telling M’yrnn how M’yrnn was hurting people, and M’yrnn refusing to believe it, just like Sam refused to believe she was Reign. M’yrnn insisted that he would never ever hurt anyone, but even he couldn’t deny the facts anymore. Inevitably, he had to allow himself to be shackled by the power dampener for everyone else’s sake, as well as his own.
It’s a frightening thing when you have to fight something that’s completely out of your control. The worst part is that there’s no real villain here; there’s nothing anyone can punch to make it go away. They’re just awful things that simply happen, and they’re outside of Sam’s and M’yrnn’s control. It’s hard to deal with something like that.
The only part of this episode that irritated me was Lena keeping Sam’s identity from everyone. In three seasons, have we learned nothing about keeping secrets? Lena is not doing the right thing by hiding Sam’s secret. Sam didn’t ask Lena not to tell anyone; Lena took that upon herself. When J’onn couldn’t deny the harm his father’s condition was doing, he stepped up and told people, and Alex promised she would work to help M’yrnn. The DEO easily forgave M’yrnn. I don’t understand why Lena chooses to keep this absolutely vital information from people who could help. They care about Sam, too. Furthermore, if someone is hurting others and you know about it, I feel it’s your moral imperative to let others in on that information, especially if withholding that information is going to put other people in danger.
Sometimes one has to do the hard thing to do the right thing. No matter the cost. Kudos to everyone who just acted the hell out of their characters this episode. Supergirl is definitely back to form.
Supergirl airs Monday nights at 8 Eastern/7 Central on the CW. Dayna can be reached on Twitter @queenanthai.