This week on Supergirl, it was an episode of revelations, voluntary and not. Between Lena and Sam and M’yrnn unwittingly causing chaos at the DEO, more than one person was reduced to tears this episode. Let’s dive in with Kori on recap duty and Elizabeth on analysis!
Hoo-boy. That was a doozy. I said in last week’s recap that I was fully expecting the J’onn and M’yrnn story to just f*ck me up and it sure did. We start the episode on a lighter note, with the Supergang playing charades. M’yrnn reveals J’onn used to cheat at a game when he was a boy, waiting until M’yrnn had left the room to move the pieces around. J’onn had apparently tried to claim it was his imaginary friend “from a 5th dimension” (hello Mister Mxyzptlk reference!), but has a hard time remembering the “friend’s” name. J’onn offers it (it’s Zook), and the team laugh before duty calls. There’s also a fun little aside of seeing what happens when Kara actually likes one of her shirts and doesn’t want to ruin it by dramatically ripping all the buttons off.
They head to the alien bar and have to subdue a rampaging Kalanorian (not before Kara is thrown into an arcade game), and after, we get a fun little moment between Alex, Kara, and J’onn. The Kalanorian’s behavior is unusual, but J’onn theorizes that Mercury rising is playing havoc with her psychic abilities. The Danvers sisters crack a joke about astrology, to which J’onn quips that it’s more about complex lunar and gravitational shifts that Kalanorians are sensitive to. It’s a nice little reminder of not taking human (or even Kryptonian) physiology as the default.
J’onn and M’yrnn are still dealing with the revelation that M’yrnn is experiencing onset za-alet (think Martian dementia), so J’onn quietly brings his father to the DEO to attempt a ritual that would transfer the memories from the affected parts of his mind to the healthier ones.
Elsewhere in the DEO, Mon-El and Kara use some 31st-century tech courtesy of Querl to review every angle of Kara’s last ass-kicking at Reign’s hands. Kara analyzes the footage and realizes that Reign is all strength, but no technique. There’s no real finesse, footwork, or other strategies besides relying on the Kryptonian powers, so Kara is able to see areas where she can effectively counter-attack. This leads to Mon-El showing her the finer points of “cape fighting,” explaining that their capes are made of some kind of Kryptonian smart cloth.
Okay, I’m going to be a stickler. He’s wearing the Mon-El classic red suit that Winn presumably made for him. Where did Winn get the extra cloth? Where did Mon-El get this cloth in the future? I don’t need a lot of explaination beyond an “I had a similar material in the future,” but you have to work a little harder here, writers.
Anyways, the DEO is plugging along and then all hell breaks loose.
Remember that ritual for M’yrnn? Of course, it goes sideways. DEO agents, Winn included, begin to irrationally lash out at each other, leading to physical altercations that J’onn has to break apart psychically. He explains that M’yrnn is having bleed over from attempting the ritual, and it’s affecting everyone in the building. J’onn can’t bring himself to use a dampening technology on his father, however. (Get ready for the tears, kiddos.) He just got his father back, and he refuses to strip M’yrnn of the dignity he maintained for centuries under White Martian imprisonment and torture. My heart.
But let’s take a break from this and go check on Sam and Lena.
Lena, the world’s most extra and devoted friend has run a battery of tests on Sam and correctly deduced that Sam and Reign are the same person. Okay, again. She’s figured out what Supergirl and the DEO haven’t, that Sam and Reign are the same, but she still can’t figure out that Kara is Supergirl? Shenanigans!
Anyway, Lena finally tells Sam the news, and Sam refuses to believe her. Lena resorts to some tough love, telling Sam she’s not a mother, she’s a monster, and it triggers an episode for Reign to come out. Since Lena has thought ahead (of course she did), Sam’s little room cell is reinforced and the fallout is contained for now. But when Lena replays the footage for Sam, our poor, poor Sam has to face the truth and collapses in tears.
She naturally feels awful and cries for all those people she hurt. Lena comforts her and reassures her they’ll find a way to fix it, especially since she was able to obtain some of Reign’s DNA during the last episode.
In a surprise, we see Lena at her apartment for once, and not her office. She’s spent so much time on Sam and trying to help her friend, she’s kind of neglected her boyfriend, James. Luckily James is a great guy because he shows up with a mountain of food, worried she’s not taking care of herself. He also tells her he doesn’t necessarily need her to confide in him right now, but he does need her to eat. Awww.
Back at the DEO, Kara tells J’onn something her uncle, Jor-El, used to say. “The son becomes the father, and the father the son.” J’onn relents and goes to M’yrnn and tries to tell him that his psychic bleed is affecting everyone around him. M’yrnn doesn’t take it well, insisting he’d never hurt anyone. Then, all of his bad psychic energy unleashes.
Kara and Mon-El are resuming their cape tricks training and, wow, okay, it does not go well. Under the effects of the spillover, Kara absolutely unloads on Mon-El. Honestly? It’s long overdue. She tells him she’s angry she kept apologizing to him when he was disrespectful to her (while he was still learning how to not be a spoiled prince). She calls him a jackass and says she can’t believe she fell in love with him. Also, the fact that she had to put in all the work to make him not an asshole and then he shows back up married to a perfect lady and wants to “reminisce” is kind of a dick move.
I’m just sad that Kara’s going to apologize to him by the end of the episode, because while it might have come from M’yrnn’s psychic episode, a lot of this needed to be said out in the open. It’s another reminder of just how much Kara bottles and internalizes what makes her upset or angry and how destructive it can be once it has an outlet. Remember red kryptonite, anyone? She had a lot of truth bombs for Alex and J’onn that episode as well.
To Mon-El’s credit, he stands there and takes it (his Legion ring shields him from the psychic attack), and keeps Kara in the room with him instead of letting her wander the DEO. Luckily, Alex steps in to save the day and comes with a dampener for Kara, courtesy of Winn.
The rest of the DEO, however, is devolving to a madhouse. M’yrnn refuses to wear a dampening bracelet, and you can’t blame him as it’s a direct reminder of his centuries in White Martian captivity. We do get to see Kara successfully use a cape technique in subduing one of the prisoners now on the loose, but I’m not sold on the effectiveness of this against the likes of Reign.
J’onn pleads for his father to accept the bracelet, and it’s only when M’yrnn sees a White Martian that he finally pauses, giving Kara enough time to talk to him and help him begin to accept the changes in his life now. He allows J’onn to put the dampener on him and the chaos at the DEO dies down. Father and son embrace, and I’m not crying, you’re crying.
Surprise! Kara doesn’t apologize how I thought she would! Oh, she apologizes for how it came out in a psychic attack, but she admits that she had started romanticizing her relationship with Mon-El after he was gone. She wasn’t wrong about what she said and feels better for airing it out. Mon-El apologizes again for being a jerk. Everyone good? Great.
Oh wait, here’s a flock of falling dead birds. Welp, looks like Pestilence woke up.
Man, this was a hard one to write, my friends. I was snot-down-my-face, ugly sobbing through several parts of this episode, and for so many different reasons. I did enjoy last week’s episode for the adventure, but this week’s episode is a great example of why Supergirl is still my favorite show of all time.
Before I get into the emotional nitty gritty I want to give a shoutout to the incredible fight choreography and the huge amount of CGI they used in this episode. When the show went on hiatus, one of the reasons they cited was production issues. Seeing what they were able to produce with that extra time makes the wait seem worth it. There was so much going on in the background of each shot, especially toward the end when you started seeing the aliens in their cells and when they broke out. It’s not movie quality CGI, but it looks damn good for TV. I can’t believe how much they were able to cram into a single episode.
It’s always viscerally satisfying to see Chyler Leigh and Melissa Benoist nail their fight scenes, but Chris Woods has clearly been practicing to keep up with his character’s development. Jeremy Jordan also showed off some solid fight choreography work, which is amazing because Winn isn’t typically a character who gets to brawl. He played the scene where he was influenced by the psychic waves so well I was biting through my nails the entire time. Well done.
Now, the emotional parts. Lena provoking Sam into turning into Reign was heartwrenching to watch, but I know why it had to be done. Seeing Sam have the meltdown after was even more heartbreaking, as well as her phone call to Ruby. Lena has so much on her plate, it’s amazing she isn’t starting to show cracks. She’s been so amazing to Sam and Ruby, but the stress is clearly wearing her down. It’s why I’m glad that James is trying to meet her halfway.
It’s interesting to see Lena react to James, because I don’t think she’s used to her romantic interests being so thoughtful. While I really want to start seeing more development there on screen, I appreciate that James respected her request to not ask her about her work. While both James and Lena have big secrets to keep, that’s their decision, and I love that they’re able to be adults about it and talk it out instead of letting it escalate into a fight.
Speaking of escalation, that fight between Mon El and Kara was a long time coming, and I’m so glad that they included it. Because Kara is Kara, she needs a little extra push to be that angry. However, this was an important conversation to have. It’s important for her to have listed all the things Mon El specifically did to disrespect her. It was important to have him not say anything at first and to just listen to her. And finally, it was important for him to own up to the person he used to be. I loved that scene, and I was genuinely moved by it.
I have seen some people complaining that Mon El got to develop into a decent person offscreen, but I just can’t see how else they could do it without literally repeating the entire second season arc again. I feel like this is a good course correction, and allows the show to move forward from last season’s problems without getting bogged down by solving them in real time. It’s no small feat to admit wrongdoing, and I’m happy that we got to see this happen on screen.
It’s also never easy to admit that you need help, especially when it’s for something like dementia. The way Supergirl is handling this storyline is sensitive, truthful, and deeply moving. David Harewood and Carl Lumbly are masterful actors, and they had me in ugly sobs during many of their scenes together. Once again, Supergirl takes a real life issue and nails it.
Overall, this episode had me on the edge of my seat, laughing, crying, and just so excited for how this season is going to end. I’ll admit the long hiatus had me worried, but I worried for naught. The show is exactly what I’d hoped it would be, and it’s going to be an excruciatingly long wait until next Monday to see what happens next.
See you next Tuesday everyone!