written by Cara Russell
SPOILER WARNINGS ARE IN EFFECT
The award for “best use of a Sinatra song” goes to Supergirl this week, with Lex Luthor abandoning all pretenses of being a good guy while blowing up the Kaznian troops he helped groom. Even Red Daughter gets the shaft, and after being used to stage Supergirl’s defeat, she’s stuffed into a holding capsule next to every other abducted alien being used as a battery.
From there, it’s a straight shot into Lex’s Superman-hating, Hitler-quoting, mass-murdering megalomania and I really wish this season were half as long as it was, just so I wouldn’t have had to endure so much to get here. It’s so beautiful I shed a tear. Words cannot express how wonderfully the cast has played through, especially Jon Cryer as Lex Luthor and Jesse Rath as Brainiac 5, who have both shown a huge range in a short period of time.
Kara recovers her lost evidence, thanks to Brainiac 5, and writes a crushing exposé on Lex’s machinations. This is hilariously followed by Lex going on about how he’s controlling the message of his ascent to power, and whatever he says will be taken as truth.
Lex summons Lena and Lillian to the White House, briefly claiming to have done all of this for their family before falling into his usual “I actually did this to kill Superman” routine. The anti-alien space weapon destroyed earlier in the season was a prototype, with the new version currently aimed at Argo City, where Superman currently resides. It’s powered by energy siphoned from other aliens rounded up by American immigration – energy which Lex plans to use to revolutionize the global energy infrastructure via L-Corp. Lillian tries and fails to poison Lex, proving that either she’s reformed or Lex is further off the deep end than usual…but not so far that he doesn’t see an assassination attempt coming.
Ben Lockwood is entirely off the deep end after having learned he’s been Lex’s pawn all along. Ben loses his Alien Affairs job to Lex over broadcast television, without even a courtesy call. He shoots up more Harun-el before starting a rampage with more Liberty goons on Shelly Island, where the space laser is charging up. Thanks to a timely message from captives Dreamer and J’onn, Supergirl and the crew are there to meet Ben, where it goes poorly for the rampagers. Ben ends up shot with the Harun-el antidote, but so is James, and James receives an eye injury to boot.
Meanwhile, J’onn and Dreamer have been rampaging in a different direction, successfully causing a riot inside the facility. Brainiac 5 joins them, and between the three they overload the weapon without blowing up the entire island, Brainy regains his humanity thanks to his love for Nia, and they free the other captive aliens.
Lex arrives to defend the base, but is intercepted by Supergirl and her Kryptonite-proof space suit. Even so, it’s a knock-down drag-out fight between them until a newly freed Red Daughter joins the fray. While not shielded against Kryptonite, Red Daughter helps shift the battle, and her death allows Kara to reabsorb her twin in a very pointed throwback to Matrix Supergirl merging with Linda Danvers.
During aerial pursuit, Lex’s damaged suit fails. Supergirl tries to save him, but Lex opts for a fall to his apparent death, remaining on-brand till the end. He instantly appears in another secret lair, where Lena is waiting for him with a dose of Harun-el antidote and a pistol. Lena straight-up shoots Lex in the chest. In his dying monologue, Lex reveals Supergirl’s secret identity, dispelling fan-favourite theories that Lena knew Kara was Supergirl all along. While this doesn’t stop Lena from attending the next game night, it does look like this will be a large plotline for Season Five, along with Kara’s angst over telling (or rather, not telling) Lena first.
Speaking of next season, Alex and Kelly Olsen share a kiss that better not be a kiss of death. Eve tries to escape Lex’s grasp only to have her hidden alliegences revealed by her handlers at Leviathan. This looks like another Season Five set up, but the most disappointing one to date, as they use another gross dogwhistle currently in use in comic book circles. It might also be a proxy for Marvel’s HYDRA, and that’s another tree best left unbarked.
In lighter reveals, a jailed Ben Lockwood watches his own son become a champion for alien amnesty and fellowship, as few other characters have seen just how horribly it can destroy a family. This was worth seeing George get into the family business for a hot second before finding out his best friend was an alien in hiding. The Monitor makes an appearance to pull J’onn J’onnz’s brother Malefic (voiced by !!PHIL LAMARR!!) from the Phantom Zone before ending the season by meddling with Lex’s fresh corpse. Considering the Monitor is an Arrowverse crossover character, it’s a promise of great things for next year’s crossover event.
Supergirl airs Sunday nights at 8 Eastern/7 Central on the CW. Cara can be found on Twitter @virtualcara.