Last week ended with Mon-El’s declaration that he wanted to train with Kara and join the grand tradition of costumed heroics, so this week opens with a completely awesome training session! It’s so pretty and fun to watch, with beautiful choreography, tight visual effects, and classic Mon-El quipping. I once again said out loud, “I’m so glad this show’s on The CW now. These effects are gorgeous!”
In a much less controlled environment, Guardian and Winn are also in the middle of costumed heroics. James returns to the van to find a dreary, sleepy Winn, who just wants to put an end to the secrecy at last–he begs James to unmask to Kara.
James immediately tries to come out of the cape closet the next morning, and it’s oh-so-sad. Kara completely misses what he’s trying to say, then insults Guardian yet again by referring to Mon-El as the other hero in town.
First-season villain, Livewire, is back this week. We see her in prison, being interviewed by a criminal psychologist who exposits, “You had a career. You were a shock jock.” And I’m sorry, but no, no one has ever put those words together in a serious sentence. The shrink isn’t long for this world, though, as two intruders bust into the cell to take Livewire.
Kara is deeply distressed at the news of Livewire’s breakout. She rushes in, Mon-El at her side, to recapture Livewire during an assault on the NCPD. She instructs Mon-El to protect the police officers, to stay with them no matter what. Of course, Mon-El has trouble with following that order, because he really wants to protect Kara. He rushes into the fray just as Guardian shows up, leaving Guardian to help the cops. One cop is badly hurt, as is Guardian. When Guardian is lying there on the ground, unconscious, Kara straight-up pulls his mask off, which…what??? That’s a major breach of superhero etiquette. Not cool, Supergirl.
Back at the DEO, it’s awkward silence for the longtime friends, but Mon-El chatters hilariously about everything from wanting a motorcycle like Guardian’s (“Is there a superhero discount?”), to the surprise reveal of Guardian’s identity (he says to James, “I thought you were just a professionally handsome deskperson”).
Kara just rips into James right in front of their friends. It’s way harsh and totally unfair. She says he’s not qualified to be a hero and he’s going to get himself killed…and I’m thinking, wait, your own sister is a DEO agent; in fact, most DEO agents are, to my understanding, human. So how is James less qualified by virtue of not having powers, when Kara fights alongside non-powered individuals every day? Plus, not all the baddies they face are superpowered. A badass mortal like James, equipped with a way sweet suit such as Winn created for him, is equally capable of fighting human bad guys at the very least. Kara is being really unreasonable, and she never apologizes for the whole unmasking thing, either.
In the middle of her argument with James, she mentions Mon-El’s superior qualifications again, and James counters that Mon-El left those cops unprotected. So Kara goes off half-cocked on Mon-El in response, telling him she can’t trust him, then demanding to know if he “likes” her. It’s childish and lame, so the less said about it, the better.
As immature as Kara is being, it’s almost hard to fault Winn for doing something very, very dumb. (I take notes during the episode to prepare for writing the recap, and my description of this scene is literally, “People are being very dumb!”) He lies to Kara and the DEO about not knowing where Livewire is, then tips off James so that Guardian can prove himself by bringing her in.
So here’s the twist with Livewire: She’s not the villain so much as the victim. She was taken from prison to be the subject of a mad scientist’s experiment to siphon her powers into other hosts. The mad scientist is a colossal loser, as demonstrated by his response to Livewire’s anger at being tortured: “Such a nasty woman.”
Guardian arrives and discovers the twist, but so does Mon-El, who followed to help out when he overheard Winn’s tip-off. Naturally, they are confused by the turn of events, and they stand around disagreeing just long enough to get themselves captured.
The good news is, Winn isn’t afraid to admit when he’s screwed up and needs help. He immediately confesses everything to Kara and tells her where she can save James and Mon-El from being experimented on. Kara flies in to save the day and capriciously goes easy on Livewire, then disses James and Winn some more. James even tries to start over and get a clean slate–he’s totally being the bigger hero here, offering Kara his forgiveness for what a jerk she’s been to him, asking only that she start respecting his heroic intent and helping him train, the way she’s doing for Mon-El. But no, she can’t meet him halfway or even just stop being such a jerk to him about this. It’s hard to see her point of view. Has Superman not talked to her about his non-powered allies?
Mon-El shows up to see Kara and confess his feelings. It’s a really sweet scene because he’s awesome. I’m totally going to miss him when they realize he has a fatal lead allergy.
The feel-good story of the week brought J’onn and M’gann back together, finally. M’gann had a sudden seizure and was unresponsive. J’onn was still full of rage, ready to let her die, but Alex got through to him. He psychically bonded with M’gann and learned the full story of her decision to turn against the other White Martians. Her performance here was truly lovely, as she confessed her well-intentioned deception with J’onn: “I couldn’t bring your people back, but I could help you feel less alone.” The bad news is, her seizure was caused by a psychic attack from other White Martians who are currently headed straight for our heroes.