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Supergirl Review - The Safest Bet

Written by  Published November 1, 2016 06:38
Welcome back to the weekly exploration of Supergirl on the CW right here on This week we examine episode 4 of season 2 entitled Survivors. When we last left these pages Ms. Martian, Maggie Sawyer and Mon-El had just debuted and everyone was settling into their newly changed lives. We examined the overall theme, the specific implications and the action-packed throwdowns. Last week’s episode was a gem but we can’t live in the past.

Let’s get this monkey smoking…




Season 2, Episode 4
October 31, 2016

Thrilled to have found another Martian, Hank is determined to get to know M'Gann better; Kara and Alex take notice of an alien fight club run by Roulette while investigating an unregistered alien's murder; and Supergirl starts training Mon-El, whom she has taken under her wing.

What They Didn’t Tell You

 Supergirl 2x04 Recap Aliens Behaving Stupidly 500x303Mon-El is cooped up and tired of it. While Alex, Kara and Maggie sawyer chase down leads on Roulette, Winn is tricked into going out with the Daxamite and of course Mon-El runs into trouble with the civilians. In the fight club, Maggie and Alex find out M’Gann is one of the fight club participators and tell J’onn after Supergirl breaks up the fight – and then gets her butt kicked by classic Superman villain Draga the gladiator from War World (which gets a mention in the episode).

J’onn confronts M’Gann and gets captured by Roulette and put into an arena match against Ms. Martian. He refuses to fight and realizes M’Gann is fighting because she thinks she deserves the punishment for surviving Mars’ last day. She agrees to stop fighting and by episode’s end they find a unique friendship. Kara finally defeats Draga thanks to a tip from Mon-El and an address from Lena Luthor – who is being too nice to Kara and rescues J’onn and breaks up the fight club. Roulette is arrested and then released due to powerful friends. Alex asks out Maggie only to find she has a girlfriend (or date) and this saddens Alex. Supergirl determines to overcome the prejudice and the constant reminder of Krypton’s failure and agrees to oversee Mon-El’s integration into human life. He agrees to train him. In the closing, it is revealed that Ms. Martian is a white Martian – the very race that exterminated J’onn’s people.



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In the last few weeks we have explored the second season of Supergirl and its themes of change, prejudice, voice and where these two themes take the viewer. We have seen Kara land on a new network, with a new work dynamic, a new struggle for voice and new relationships but we have also seen that every character on the show runs parallel to the thematic undertones used to convey the narrative. This week it seems there is a bit of an alteration to the theme of change so prominently displayed in the first three episodes because while the characters are indeed exploring the changes in their lives it is the viewer who experiences the change in this episode.

With great care the cast and creatives at Supergirl have fundamentally changed how the viewer sees the characters. This time the change happens in perspective as each character strives to come to terms with their own new perspectives. Snapper Carr is an utter joy to disdain but the relationship we had with him in the first episode remains unchanged – we like to hate him for the way he treats Kara – but our perspective of him has changed to that of a stern but utterly moral journalist using harsh no nonsense talk to make Kara a reporter. You see, we finally respect him now. In many ways Carr is an example of how each character has changed in the eyes of not only the viewer but each other.

We now view Kara as the hope and light, but she is flawed with latent prejudice and the struggle to shed it, makes us relate a little more, and we also see her flaws as a reporter and notice she is a tad naïve. With Alex, we now view her as lonely and in need of companionship when before we thought her an island of granite.  With J’onn we see a being so desperate to not be alone he cannot see the heartache before him when before we saw resigned acceptance to his fate. It goes on down the line character by character.



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Survivors really emphasized the way that survivors cope. Kara uses an idealization of her home, J’onn uses a stoic sadness, Alex uses her work, Mon-El uses frivolity and Ms. Martian uses penance. The brilliance here is that while this is clearly a developmental episode, by throwing Roulette’s fight club in the middle completely hid this fact. The action and the promise of more was enough to facilitate an open mind so the developmental aspects of the plot could bloom.

Supergirl continues to be the CW’s best DC superhero show this year because of the deep emotional and thematic devices that propel the plot via the viewer’s heart. While other shows offer other aspects f the DCU it is Supergirl that anchors the light and the hope to the viewer.

Tell the monkey to crush his butt…

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